When starting an improvement project – many make the mistake of not understanding the end-to-end process which can result in a failure to understand all the issues and develop robust improvement plans. A SIPOC diagram is such a map that pulls together input and output information regarding the business process

When to use a SIPOC diagram

A SIPOC diagram should be used during the early stages of an improvement program as a means of capturing sufficient detail to be able to convey the process.

What does Sipoc stands for?

Supplier – Significant Suppliers to the process
Input – Inputs to the process including resources such as materials and personnel
Process – Process Flow map
Output – Key outputs – this could be widgets, data, reports, metrics etc
Customer – The customers to the process – include anyone that receives one of the details outputs.

How to Build a SIPOC diagram

SIPOC diagrams are often bourne out of brainstorming sessions – the improvement team will typically start with the process map and work outwords – brainstorming key inputs and outputs, customers and suppliers. Elements of each part of the SIPOC diagram can then be prioritized.

SIPOC diagrams are beneficial they

• are quick and easy to produce – they require know specialist tools
• require a team approach – bring together stakeholders from the process
• Present the process and key issues/elements in an easy to understand way
• Provides an easy method to review the process

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