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Developing a Six Sigma framework: perspectives from financial service companies

Ayon Chakraborty (Faculty of Science and Technology, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia)
Michael Leyer (ProcessLab, Frankfurt School of Finance & Management, Frankfurt am Main, Germany)

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management

ISSN: 0265-671X

Article publication date: 8 March 2013




Six Sigma is considered to be an important management philosophy to obtain satisfied customers, but financial service organisations have been slow to adopt Six Sigma issues so far. Despite the extensive effort that has been invested and benefits that can be obtained, the systematic implementation of Six Sigma in financial service organisations is limited. As a companywide implementation framework is missing so far, the purpose of this paper is to fill this gap.


This paper presents a conceptual framework derived from literature and evaluated by experts, with a focus on financial services.


The results show that it is very important to link Six Sigma with the strategic as well as the operations level. Furthermore, although Six Sigma is a very important method for improving quality of processes, others such as Lean Management are also used. This requires a superior project portfolio management to coordinate resources and projects of Six Sigma with the other methods used.

Research limitations/implications

The developed framework provides a new contribution to the theory of applying Six Sigma in financial service institutions.

Practical implications

Beside the theoretical contribution, the framework can be used by financial service companies to evaluate their Six Sigma activities. Thus, the framework grounded through literature and empirical data will be a useful guide for sustainable and successful implementation of a Six Sigma initiative in financial service organisations.


The paper contributes, by empirical research through expert interviews, to develop a Six Sigma implementation framework for financial institutions.



Chakraborty, A. and Leyer, M. (2013), "Developing a Six Sigma framework: perspectives from financial service companies", International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, Vol. 30 No. 3, pp. 256-279.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2013, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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