Design for Lean Six Sigma, The Xerox Way

Lean Six Sigma is a major Xerox initiative for driving new levels of business performance, product offerings, and results basKoffheadshot.jpged on the customer-centered, industry-recognized methodologies. Jeffrey M. Koff, the Director of Lean Six Sigma Learning and Corporate Lean Six Sigma Operations for Xerox Corporation was a guest on the Business901 podcast. Our podcast centered on the use of Design for Lean Six Sigma strategies, and related product delivery improvement initiatives.

There is not a lot of fluff in this conversation; Jeff is direct and to the point about the uses of Lean Six Sigma. I have seen a great deal of discussion on Design for Six Sigma but very little if any on Design for Lean Six Sigma. Jeff is sold on the DfLSS process and the customization that Xerox has done with the methodology.




Outside Innovation at Xerox: At Ingersoll Rand, Xerox has secured a 9-year contract by saving the diversified industrial firm millions by better managing company-wide print spending. Using a Lean Six Sigma-based approach, Xerox will design a print environment with the appropriate number of output devices, like printers, fax machines, copiers and scanners, to help employees work more efficiently. Ingersoll Rand employees will have help adapting to more efficient technology and work processes through Xerox’s change management training and support programs. “This is not a typical client-supplier contract, it’s a partnership that combines strengths from both companies to enhance employee productivity and to communicate more effectively with our broad base of customers,” said Diane Richter, global supplier manager, Ingersoll Rand. “Collaborating with Xerox has been easy – and it produced a business model that will keep us competitive, reliable and progressive throughout our relationship.”

Inside Innovation at Xerox: Xerox Scientists developed a chemical armor to extend the lifespan of printer components. DfLSS tools were a big part of the breakthrough technology which involves the development of a chemical armor that protects photoreceptors, the light-sensitive elements in xerographic machines. Why is this important? Well, photoreceptors are multi-layer thin film devices that convert light into electrostatic images and require periodic replacement due to surface wear and tear that can impact image quality. The armor will double the life of a photoreceptor, enabling a 33 percent reduction in waste.

This innovation is an example of how Xerox uses Lean Six Sigma methodologies to bring an idea from concept to reality. For this project, Design for Lean Six Sigma (DfLSS) tools were applied in the engineering process to evaluate how raw materials were used to develop the armor and optimize the manufacturing process of the solution. The scientists are now looking to take this breakthrough one step further by leveraging their expertise in smart materials design and nanotechnology to create molecules for photoreceptors with self-healing capabilities. So, if a photoreceptor is scratched it will have the ability to repair itself, allowing its life to equal that of the device. The full release is linked here.


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