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Six Sigma and Total Quality Management

Differentiate Between Six Sigma and Total Quality Management

Six Sigma and Total Quality Management

  • 6 Sigma = 99.99966% Good
  • Total Quality Management is everyone involved in continuously improving service to customers with data and profound knowledge. Six Sigma and Total Quality Management  goes hand in hand, both are very important.

“Six Sigma is a quality program that, when all is said and done, improves your customer’s experience, lowers your costs, and builds better leaders. — Jack Welch. The statistical representation of Six Sigma describes quantitatively how a process is performing. To achieve Six Sigma, a process must not produce more than 3.4 defects per million opportunities. A Six Sigma defect is defined as anything outside of customer specifications.

Total Quality Management (TQM) is a comprehensive and structured approach to organizational management that seeks to improve the quality of products and services through ongoing refinements in response to continuous feedback. TQM processes are divided into four sequential categories: plan, do, check, and act (the PDCA cycle). In the planning phase, people define the problem to be addressed, collect relevant data, and ascertain the problem’s root cause; in the doing phase, people develop and implement a solution, and decide upon a measurement to gauge its effectiveness; in the checking phase, people confirm the results through before-and-after data comparison; in the acting phase, people document their results, inform others about process changes, and make recommendations for the problem to be addressed in the next PDCA cycle.


Six Sigma

Total Quality Management

1 Six Sigma organisations are implementing process management, improvement and measurement as part of the daily responsibilities


Quality often was an activity, separated from the key issues of organisation strategy and performance.


2 Application of Six Sigma to administrative or service processes.


 “total” quality, the effort actually was limited to product and manufacturing functions.


3 Six Sigma includes especially of their operating managers.  TQM includes a “quality council” made up of members rather than of the core management team or a quality staff department. Another


4 In Six Sigma at the top management of the organisation is unquestioned in many organisations.


In every TQM process that has thrived, leadership was actively pursued in leading the process.


5 Six Sigma system almost constantly, is a leader’s recognition that Six Sigma is synonymous with constant innovation of the organisation.


In some organisations quality felt temporary and when the leaders who had started it left the organisation, quality was proven to be temporary.


6 Six Sigma may have some of the complications as TQM.


The unclearness of TQM started with the word quality.


7 Six Sigma is a business system for achieving and sustaining success though customer focus, process management and improvement, and the sensible use of facts and data.


In many organisations, quality was an existing department with specific responsibilities for “quality control” or “quality assurance, where the discipline focused more on stabilising rather than improving processes.


8 Six Sigma philosophy you are following, you can keep the focus from getting confused.


The idea of quality “philosophies” also made the whole concept seem mysterious to many organisations.


9 A clear goal is the focus of Six Sigma. It is a challenging goal, but still believable, unlike past campaigns for ‘zero defects.’


Many organisations made quality more unclear by having similar goals like meeting or exceeding customer requirements, with no way to track the progress towards the organisation’s goal.



10 Six Sigma not only works in manufacturing and in transactional processes, but probably offers more opportunities in service industry.


Many TQM efforts were concentrated on production or manufacturing processes, but not on service or other equally critical areas.


11 Six Sigma has the potential to be more ‘total’ than Total Quality.



Ambulatory services were a mess. Even if the service quality was excellent, consumers cannot get them on time.