Six Sigma Training Programs and Requirements

Essential Information

Six Sigma training programs usually involve a combination of online and classroom learning, as well as on-the-job implementation. Most programs require participants to identify a real project from within their organization, implement Six Sigma training strategies and track results over the course of several months. Individuals interested in pursuing Six Sigma training should have basic computer skills and knowledge of spreadsheet applications; they should also know how to work with statistical figures.

Six Sigma training is available at various levels, including White, Yellow, Green, Black and Master Black Belt. However, training programs in Six Sigma Green Belt and Black Belt are the most common. Upon completion of Six Sigma training, individuals often earn a certificate of completion and are prepared to take the examination for official certification.

Green Belt Certificate

Green Belt training programs usually last two weeks. Six Sigma Green Belt program participants learn foundational business development techniques, such as the Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve and Control (DMAIC) methodology. Statistical analysis, control charts and flow charts are also discussed in relation to the Six Sigma process.

Black Belt Certificate

At the Black Belt level, business professionals learn to incorporate in-depth data analysis techniques, such as value stream mapping, with DMAIC and lean enterprise applications. As a result, Black Belt students learn to improve quality, increase customer satisfaction and produce measurable results within their organizations. Black Belt training may last up to a month.

Career Information

Typically, individuals already have a job and pursue Six Sigma certification to enhance their effectiveness, earning potential and career success. Industries that employ Six Sigma professionals include manufacturing, logistics, operations, quality control and engineering. Healthcare, sales and purchasing organizations also benefit from Six Sigma methodology. Individuals who are trained in Six Sigma often take supervisory roles, whether through project leadership or general management opportunities.

Licenses and Certifications

Six Sigma Green and Black Belt voluntary certifications are offered through organizations such as the American Society for Quality. In order to qualify for Six Sigma certification, individuals must meet minimum work experience requirements and pass an exam. Individuals interested in Black Belt certification must also supply documentation proving they have completed 1-2 Six Sigma projects. Recertification is required every three years; to maintain certification individuals can either retest or meet continuing education requirements.

Continuing Education

Six Sigma professionals interested in attending continuing education seminars may look to colleges, which often host half- to full-day lectures. Organizational websites may also provide archived webinars. Industry conferences, typically lasting 2-3 days, are available where attendees can gain tips, network and listen to senior guest speakers.

Once a Six Sigma training program is completed, participants receive a certificate and are required to take an examination for official certification. Six Sigma training programs are generally pursued by employed individuals seeking advancement within their companies.

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