Understanding the Six Sigma Methodologies: DMAIC vs DMADV

Understanding the Six Sigma Methodologies: DMAIC vs DMADV

By Discovery Lean Six Sigma

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DMAIC and DMADV are two of the most common Six Sigma methodologies in use today. Businesses frequently rely on them to produce high quality with minimal defects while meeting the expectations of customers. While both are designed to help businesses to be more effective and efficient, they are certainly not interchangeable and are optimized for different process types.

Let us examine and similarities and differences between the two tools and see how businesses can decide the best strategy for optimizing their processes.

DMAIC vs DMADV: The Similarities

Let’s first see a basic overview of these two methodologies before we begin to compare them. DMAIC involves Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, and Control phases while DMADV involves the phases of Define, Measure, Analyze, Design, and Verify.

There’s no denying the fact that DMADV and DMAIC have a number of similarities. Both these techniques use statistical tools to propose solutions to quality-related problems.

They are implemented by Green, Black, and Master Black Belts and target a reduction of defects to less than 3.4 per million available opportunities in accordance with the term ‘Six Sigma’ itself. They both propose data-intensive solutions that derive from hard facts.

The Differences Between DMAIC and DMADV

The major differences between the two tools come in the way they handle the final two steps. In the case of DMADV, the Design and Verify phases involve the redesign of a process to meet the needs and requirements of customers.

This is in contrast to the Improve and Control Steps of DMAIC where the focus is on controlling and adjusting the process. In a nutshell, while DMAIC defines business processes and their applicability, DMADV focuses on customer needs and their relationship with products and services.

Let’s now consider how the tools handle measurement. DMAIC measures current performance while the DMADV technique measures customer needs and specifications. While DMAIC uses a control system to monitor the future performance of the business, DMADV proposes a business model whose efficiency can be verified through simulations.

In conclusion, DMAIC will help improve business processes to remove or reduce defects, while DMADV will help shape a business model that can meet the requirements of the customers.

When to Use Which: The Nature of the Project

It is critical to first determine the nature of your project to be able to choose from amongst the Kaizen, DMAIC, and DMADV methodologies. Businesses need to have a process in place that can help determine whether a project should be directly implemented or if the DMAIC, Kaizen, or DMADV methodology can contribute value.

If you have new product and service designs at hand, it is best to consider DMADV. However, this methodology might not always be the best to work with when considering the existing processes and products. If you do not have any existing product at all, you could use DMADV to implement the design of the product.

Experts recommend using DMADV when you are dealing with a process improvement that does not meet expectations.

DMAIC, on the other hand, works with pre-existing products and processes that no longer meet customer needs.

The best step forward, if a business does not possess in-house Six Sigma expertise, is to seek the support of Six Sigma Master Black Belts and Black Belts who can help make the decision between DMADV and DMAIC.


Six Sigma is a very powerful methodology that can help minimize defects and meet customer needs and expectations. However, choosing between DMAIC and DMADV can be a challenge at times even for businesses that possess Six Sigma expertise.

It is highly advisable to consider first the nature of the project you wish to apply the tools to. Businesses must have a mechanism in place that could determine the best step forward— proceeding directly or using one amongst the two methodologies, as the case may be. Six Sigma experts and Black Belts too can offer valuable insights into this matter.

The post Understanding the Six Sigma Methodologies: DMAIC vs DMADV appeared first on Shmula.

Original: https://www.shmula.com/27623-2/27623/
By: Shmula Contributor
Posted: November 4, 2018, 1:05 am

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