In this article you will learn case study of Motorola which includes history of Motorola, Motorola’ six steps to Excellence and how Motorola has used six sigma today?
History of Motorola
The first car radio was invented by Motorola, which is how the name Motorola, which means “sound in motion,” came to be.
It created the first two-way radios (also known as “walkie-talkies”) during World War II, and by the 1950s, Motorola was well-known for its consumer electronics products.
Motorola changed its focus from radios and televisions to advanced telecommunications and electronics products semiconductors, two-way radios, pagers, cellular telephones, and related equipment in the 1970s in response to intense competition, primarily from Japanese companies.
However, at the beginning of the 1980s, Japanese rivals were still outpacing Motorola with better products at lower costs.
In the last ten years, Motorola has made a strong comeback. With a 45% global market share in both cellular phones and two-way mobile radios, it currently dominates all rivals in both markets.
After Intel and NEC, Motorola is the third-largest semiconductor manufacturer in the world. Previously in immediate risk of being driven out of the pager industry.
With an astounding 85% global market share, Motorola currently rules that market. Motorola’s amazing success as a leader was made possible by its slavish devotion to quality.
Motorola’s Six-Sigma Quality Goal
Motorola began an intensive campaign to raise product quality early in the 1980s, first by tenfold and subsequently by a hundredfold.
It established the unheard-of “six-sigma” quality goal. The statistical term “six sigma” refers to the six standard deviations from the statistical performance average.
This indicates that Motorola set out to achieve a defect-free product rate of 99.9997%, or less than 3.4 per million manufactured components.
Six sigma ended up being Motorola’s catchphrase. Motorola was honored with one of the first annual Malcolm Baldridge National Quality Awards in 1988, which recognized “preeminent quality leadership.”
The initial focus of Motorola’s efforts was on enhancing product quality through advances in manufacturing.
To stop defects from arising was the aim. By making things right the first time, every time, and developing products for quality from the start.
This frequently entails enhancing product design.
The extremely successful Motorola MicroTAC foldable, hand-held mobile phone features fewer parts that snap together rather than being connected by screws or other fasteners, reducing component flaws and production problems.
Everyone in the organization needs to be committed to quality in order to meet the six-sigma standard. As a result, Motorola’s fundamental company culture now places a strong emphasis on comprehensive quality.
Motorola invests $120 million a year in training staff members on quality, and it pays them when they get things right.
Motorola holds its suppliers to the same rigorous quality requirements since its products can only be as excellent as the parts that go into them. Additionally, suppliers who complied saw significant improvements in their own quality.
In more recent times, Motorola has shifted its original emphasis from preventing production errors to emphasizing increasing customer-defined quality and customer value.
The vice president of quality of Motorola says, “Quality needs to do something for the customer.”
Thus, “complete customer satisfaction” is the main goal of the company’s quality movement.
“If the customer doesn’t like it, it’s a defect,” is how we define a defect.
Instead of focusing simply on manufacturing flaws, Motorola now asks consumers about their quality expectations, examines customer complaints, and reviews service records in an ongoing effort to increase customer value.
Executives from Motorola frequently go to customers’ offices to learn more in-depth information about their needs.
As a result, Motorola’s total quality management program has accomplished more than just reducing product defects. It has also assisted the corporation in changing from an engineering perspective that is internally driven to one that is externally driven and customer-focused.
The quality program at Motorola now encompasses every department and process. It starts from finance, advertising, manufacturing and product development to market research.
Some critics are worried that Motorola’s devotion with quality would cause pricey products to arrive on the market later than expected. According to Motorola, the opposite is true— superior quality is the most affordable option.
The costs of monitoring and correcting errors may be significantly higher than the expenses of doing things correctly from the start. According to Motorola, its quality initiatives over the previous six years have generated savings of more than 83 billion.
Motorola’s pursuit of excellence so goes on. It plans to achieve near-perfection by 2001, with a staggering rate of just one defect per billion products.
Motorola’ six steps to Excellence
Motorola continues to put quality into our products from the beginning, just as it did in the 1960s. However, by offering a structured method for ongoing improvement, the Six Sigma strategy covers every internal Motorola operation.
This is what we refer to as the “six steps to excellence.” They consist of:
✔Determine the kind of product or service you offer.
✔Determine who your consumers are and what they need.
✔Identify your requirements and suppliers.
✔Define your approach to work and your process.
✔Improve processes and get rid of sources of defects
✔Improve the Sigma level over time.
Motorola is continuously attempting to identify, quantify, and get rid of flaws in every process using the Six Sigma methodology.
Additionally, Six Sigma enables companies to keep their attention on the procedures rather than the people. If systems are created to be perfect, individuals will use them to perform perfectly.
How is Six Sigma used by Motorola today?
For Six Sigma, quality is about assisting a business in generating more revenue. Quality in Six Sigma is a value added by a successful business or activity.
Motorola employs Six Sigma to eliminate waste and defects as they are found, maintaining high efficiency. This may occur in the administration or even on a production line.
By reducing variation and eliminating waste (which overlaps with Lean), Six Sigma seeks to improve quality. Motorola was able to provide products and services more quickly and cheaply as a result of this. The three main objectives of Six Sigma are defect prevention, cycle time reduction, and cost minimization.
The efficiency of Six Sigma stems from its capacity to spot and get rid of waste costs, or expenses that don’t add value for customers.
Companies that reject or avoid applying Six Sigma concepts, in contrast to Motorola, frequently have extraordinarily expensive operational procedures. The cost of (bad) quality is typically considerable for businesses operating at low sigma; they frequently spend 25% to 40% of their sales resolving problems.
However, businesses that use Six Sigma often spend less than 5% of their budget on problem-solving. This gap frequently has a significant financial impact.
Companies like General Electric have incurred annual costs of $8 billion to $12 billion as a result. However, Motorola has benefited from and continues to profit from Six Sigma. They were one of its major innovators and have improved it through time. It is not unexpected that they are successful.
Motorola approaches quality from the standpoint of the customer. Motorola only get one chance with each product they offer to positively affect a customer.
They face the risk of losing that customer if the product falls short of their expectations. Simply meeting industry norms is insufficient. Every single product that is delivered to a customer should adhere to a consistent level of quality.
The first twelve years of Six Sigma at Motorola, from 1987 to 1999, produced notable improvements for our company.
Motorola had gotten rid of 99.7% of all in-process flaws by 1999. On a unit basis, the Cost of Poor Quality was decreased by more than 84%. Overall manufacturing cost savings came to more than $18 billion. Employee productivity rose sharply at the same time, rising 12% yearly.