Poka Yoke

Posted on November 4, 2009 by

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The heat from some of the manufacturing equipment at Katy’s Cookie Factory sometimes melts chocolate chips together before they are added to the cookies. This results in extra-large, unsightly globs of chocolate chips that customers have complained about. Although a worker is supposed to be watching the temperature of the machines, it is easy to miss a brief time of extra heat that causes some chocolate chips to melt together. What can be of use here is Poka Yoke, which is a Japanese term for mistake-proofing. Poke Yoke either makes the mistake impossible from occurring or impossible not to notice. To prevent the large globs of chocolate from being added to the cookie dough, a sieve with holes just large enough for the correct-sized chocolate chips to pass through was added. Now there are no more mistakes of large globs of chocolate chips in the cookies. Anyone can come up with a creative idea to prevent mistakes in a process and therefore prevent a certain defect from occurring.

Posted in: Six Sigma