Six Sigma

Six Sigma principles have been used by a multitude of companies to improve their operating characteristics, improve quality, increase customer satisfaction and boost the bottom line. Implementing Six Sigma principles at a company can be expensive, including extensive training for employees and hiring consultants. For companies within central Ohio, The Fisher College of Business can provide a lower-cost alternative to a traditional Six Sigma Implementation.

Fisher College students learn how to implement a Six Sigma Project within a pair of courses: “Six Sigma Principles” and “Six Sigma Projects.” As a part of these courses, student teams are required to develop, manage and implement a Six Sigma project at a real company. These students are excited about improving operations at your company through the analysis taught in the classroom.

Typical Benefits for Participating Companies

  • An opportunity to evaluate a real Six Sigma project prior to investing in Six Sigma
  • The opportunity for persons interested in Six Sigma to participate with the students in learning about the methodology
  • Managers learn more deeply about the operating characteristics of their processes
  • No requirement to train employees in Six Sigma principles
  • No consultancy fees
  • The ability to evaluate Fisher College students for potential employment
  • Real solutions to real problems

If you would like to learn more about the Six Sigma methodology and the potential benefits for your organization, visit:


To get started

  • Contact Peg Pennington (614-292-3081,
  • Choose a potential project (Peg can help you choose). Projects can focus on a variety of processes within either manufacturing or services including:
    • Manufacturing defect problems
    • Difficulty sizing or fitting parts
    • Reducing excess scrap or rework
    • Increasing productivity or throughput
    • Increasing customer satisfaction
    • Reducing cost drivers
    • Operation cannot keep up with demand
    • Improving payment processing
    • Reducing spending
    • Reducing time to hire employees
    • Reducing time to fill out forms
    • Reduce errors on sales orders
    • Improve on-time delivery
    • Reducing overtime
  • Complete a Project Charter. The Six Sigma Project Team assigned to your company will help you to draft the Project Charter. The Project Charter will include:
    • Location of the project
    • Names of company individuals who can provide key information and data regarding the process
    • Description of the project and project goals
    • Description of the problems with the process
    • Expected deliverables from the Six Sigma team
    • Expected duration (typically 15 weeks or less)

Contact Peg Pennington today, 614-292-3081,, to begin the process of real improvement in your enterprise.


Frequently Asked Questions

1) What investments in time and resources will we as a sponsor company be responsible for?

Participating companies will only be responsible for the cost of bringing students on-site from the Ohio State campus if and when it is made necessary by the project. Additional resource commitments will be on the part of the Project Champion, Sponsor, and any other lead company associates responsible for the passage of data to the Ohio State team.

2) What is the legal relationship between the students working on the proposed project and the company?

The students are non-paid consultants with no direct relationship to the company, except in the instances when the student is in the part-time MBA program and is already an employee of the company. Students are bound by whatever non-disclosure agreements are required by the company of any other paid consultant.

3) What are the benefits to the students working on the project?

Students in this program attain credit towards graduation by participating in the program and are assigned a grade by the instructor. The grade is heavily influenced by the level of success judged by sponsoring companies as well as a peer evaluation by their teammates. The class is also the first step towards attaining Black Belt status,in Six Sigma,for students with these career aspirations.

4) How long does the engagement last? How much time do students spend on the project weekly?

Fifteen weeks is the typical length of a project. Students are advised to spend between 8 — 10 hours a week on their project.

5) Do we need to be a Six Sigma compliant program or have an active Six Sigma program to participate?

It is not necessary to have an active Six Sigma program, so long as there is strong evidence of a quality improvement initiative and there is full backing from senior management toward the goal of the project. Several participating companies have gleaned success from these projects without having formal departments directly labeled as “Six-Sigma.”

6) As a sponsoring company, what can we do to guarantee a project’s success?

Your company must be willing to provide a Senior Level Champion that will vouch for the merits of the project and lead the way when the Ohio State team requires help in navigating your company. The project must also come equipped with a tight scope which only the sponsoring company can provide guidance. Finally, the Ohio State project team must be able to adequately access data necessary for the successful completion of the project and will often need the help of its internal sponsors to retrieve it. The simpler it is to access the data, the sharper and more robust will be the resulting study.