Six Sigma Pricing > Analyze: Identify and Understand Opportunities to Grow Margins and Create Reporting Tools to Identify Defects

Posted on

This is the fourth in a six part blog series on how manufacturers and distributors can apply Six Sigma methodology to the pricing function to generate repeatable margin gains. This blog covers the importance of effective analysis of the right measurements and metrics to identify the root causes of defects in your pricing process.

All pricing practice leaders know a disciplined process is needed to create and maintain Pricing Excellence – effective defect analysis must cover these five areas which can be major sources of variation across commercial processes:

  1. People
  2. Information
  3. Tools / Systems
  4. Environment
  5. Methods

This crucial step leverages the measurements and metrics you have mindfully constructed to identify what needs improvement and what/where are the sources of defects in the process.

A company must properly analyze anything that impacts pricing performance and then use these insights and data to make meaningful improvements that will help you achieve your business goals. The following lays out some effective methods for the analysis phase.

Cause and Effect Analysis:

  • Diagram the relationship of the 5 sources of variation
  • Build a Cause and Effect Matrix to quantify impact of each process step
  • Select key sources of variation throughout the process
  • Capture 2-3 potential root causes from diagram
  • Dig deep into controls and compensation
  • Ask why multiple times

Process Map Analysis:

  • Diagram the process and hunt for bottlenecks or other defects of each process step
  • Chart metrics to see if the process appears stable or not
  • Use Pareto Charts, Histograms, Box plots, Scatter Plots, etc. to visually determine data distribution and variation

Six Sigma Program Overview

Six Sigma Master Blackbelt Greg Preuer, of SPA has created the first course designed to apply time tested Six Sigma methodology to pricing.  Those who study with Greg will learn not only how to drive the pricing process but how to sustain the gains and automate the process.  They will become Six Sigma experts (Blackbelt) in business process with a focus placed squarely on price management.

Graduates from this course will learn to chart a clear path to pricing improvement.  They will learn each of the following steps:

  • How to design and design goals which are consistent with their company’s pricing strategy.
  • How to measure and identify characteristics critical for pricing success.
  • How to analyze the current situation and steps along the way.
  • How to design an improved alternative which moves closer to the desired result.
  • How to verify that actions taken create the right results.

A Pricing Process founded on SPA’s Six Sigma Program includes the following:

  • Negotiating strategy and tactics
  • Value-based pricing
  • Automated decision making tools
  • Customer Profitability improvement plans
  • Sales team selling value
  • Pricing strategy and leadership
  • Consistent and fair pricing architecture
  • 2 to 4% growth in GM%
  • Pricing based on customer sensitivity
  • Continuous improvement focus

To learn how you can realize the benefits of SixSigma Pricing, contact SPA today at or 216.455.1545.

The following are the two remaining areas we will dive into in future articles in this blog series that will help illuminate the path to Six Sigma Pricing Excellence.

  1. Improve: build processes, systems and tools to assist teams and create reporting tools to track improvements
  2. Control: set and enforce pricing authority levels and repeat previous steps as continuous improvement never stops

Follow SPA

To easily keep up with the latest SPA announcements, events and resources you can follow us on LinkedIn or on the following major social media channels and file sharing platforms: Twitter, Google+, Facebook, SlideShare, and YouTube.

We also encourage you to join the Strategic Pricing discussions in our LinkedIn group and to sign up to receive our Strategic Pricing Newsletter by clicking here.

3 thoughts on “Six Sigma Pricing > Analyze: Identify and Understand Opportunities to Grow Margins and Create Reporting Tools to Identify Defects

    […] Six Sigma Pricing > Analyze: Identify and Understand Opportunities to Grow Margins and Create Rep…. […]

    […] Analyze: use reporting tools to find opportunities to grow or challenges to fix […]

    […] Six Sigma Pricing > Analyze: Identify and Understand Opportunities to Grow Margins and Create Rep…. […]

Post a Comment

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s