Lean Six Sigma Coaching

How to improve the results of an ICT Servicedesk with Lean Six Sigma

What if the customers of your ICT Servicedesk are satisfied, but your employees’ ambitions need to increase? Every ICT Servicedesk’s service should be to make sure its customers can be served with more efficient and services of higher quality. To concretize this mission, and to run the project, one could use the method Lean Six Sigma.

This article describes what one could to do improve the efficiency and quality of an ICT Servicedesk, structurally and with a long-term result, with the help of Lean Six Sigma.

The combination of efficiency and quality makes Lean Six Sigma the perfect method for running this project. Lean Six Sigma is actually aimed at optimizing the added value for customers, by reducing waste. By doing so, the quality of the service will increase and costs will go down.

Operator concentrating on client

A Lean Six Sigma Project

A Lean Six Sigma project consists of five phases (DMAIC), which stand for:

  • Define phase: Define the goal
  • Measure phase: Determine the current achievements.
  • Analyze phase: Identify the main causes of the problem
  • Improve phase: Select and Implement the solutions
  • Control phase: Verify and Control the results.


Define & Measure

These phases are aimed at determining the goal of the improvement and the current process achievements. In this case, improving customer satisfaction and efficiency will be the goals for the project. However, what’s maybe the most important in running a Lean Six Sigma project is that the employees themselves need to see the need for improvement.



This phase in the Lean Six Sigma project has the aim of identifying the main causes that could be a bottleneck for increasing customer satisfaction and efficiency. This will all be done on the basis of process- and data information. Process information will be gathered from the chain. In this case, the chain exists of employees of the ICT Servicedesk, chain partners and suppliers. By means of an interactive workshop the main causes will be identified via an Ishikawa diagram.



The aim of this phase would be to select and implement solutions for the problem. Together with the employees of the ICT Servicedesk, a brainstorm to find solutions for the main causes has taken place.

Accordingly, solutions have to be prioritized to select the most effective ones. After selection, the ICT Management should be requested for the ‘GO’ for implementing the solutions.



After identification that the solutions are effectivie, ofcourse an ICT department would want to maintain this improved level of customer satisfaction, if not even more increase. To secure the improved level, a coachproces and documentation proces could be developed to let employees extend their improvements and even enlarge them.


Are you interested in the methodology? Have a look at my programs!

You can also contact me for some more information on the topic or for informal advice.

Phone: +31 6 55 301094

Email: peter@herku.org

How Problem Owner Can Sabotage Your Lean Six Sigma Project


Some Lean Six Sigma practitioners sabotage their own project on day one.

They don’t define who the Problem Owner is and what his/her role is in the project.


Who is the Problem Owner?

The Problem Owner – also called the Process Owner – is the person who is functionally responsible for the process you and your team want to improve using Lean Six Sigma methodology.

Since every project is defined terms of “a problem that needs to be solved” that is why we talk about the owner of the problem.

This is important to tell – and I tell it often during my coaching: the Green- or Black Belt or their project team is NOT the Problem Owner. They are only responsible to apply the methodology in order to find solution to the problem.

After the solution is proved to be good – which is the main part of the Improve Phase of the DMAIC roadmap – the team has to hand it over to the Problem Owner.

I remember a project with a Healthcare company. Their goal was to improve communication with clients.

We had a good team but we spent lots of time defining the real, measurable problem. It took me over 24 wasted hours before I realized: all these discussions are caused by the fact that everybody sees the problem from its own perspective.

If we had one Problem Owner, he/she could tell clearly why is communication with the clients a problem that needs to be solved. Everybody is communicating one way or another with the clients so it is very difficult to point out a person to be the Problem Owner.

That brings us to the next question:


What is the role of the Problem Owner in a Lean Six Sigma Project?

During the project execution the Problem Owner should make resources – time, people, facility, machines, etc. – available so that the team can work on finding and testing the solution.

At the end of the project – the Control Phase – the Problem Owner needs to formally take over the findings of the project team and make it sure the new process is being followed.

Once I coached a Green Belt who had a project in a Swedish manufacturing company. Because of some language difficulties the Problem Owner was not part of the project team.

Everything went fine until we arrived at the Control Phase where I asked the Green Belt to get the approval of the Problem Owner for the new procedure.

The Green Belt was a bit stressed because he did not keep the Problem Owner up to date, therefore he had some hard thoughts about getting the approval.

This mistake can costs time delays and to be avoided by inviting the Problem Owner to join the project team or updating him at least once a month.



Make sure when you start a Lean Six Sigma project that the Problem Owner is well defined.

Invite him/her to join the project team.

Otherwise keep him/her up to date on a regular basis.

Do you want one-on-one coaching to avoid mistakes like these?

Go to http://www.LeanSixSigmaCoach.com as long as coaching spots are available.


Warm regards,



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