Poka Yoke

Posted on November 4, 2009 by


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