Six Sigma Methodology: DMADV and DMAIC

Page content

Six Sigma Methodology

Six sigma methodology like DMADV or DMAIC is aimed for defect reduction up to a specified sigma level. Upon expansion of both the terms we will find:


D – Define

M – Measure

A – Analyze

D – Design

V – Validate


D – Define

M – Measure

A – Analyze

I – Improve

C – Control

Similarities between DMADV and DMAIC

  • Both of these six sigma methodologies talk about reduction of DPMO (defects per million opportunities).
  • Both DMADV and DMAIC use the same kind of six sigma tools (like, DOE, QFD, TREEZ, Pugh matrix etc.).
  • Customer’s needs are the basic driving parameters for both six sigma methodologies.
  • Six sigma BB (black belt) and MBB (master black belt) play important roles in implementation for both the cases.

Differences between DMADV and DMAIC

  • DMADV can be thought of for either designing of completely new product/process or substantial redesign of an existing product. On the other hand, DMAIC is used for modifying or fine tuning some existing processes in order to make it inline with customer requirements.
  • Measure phase of DMADV deals with quantifying customer’s needs to make specifications. However, Measure phase of DMAIC deals with measuring current performance level of existing process.
  • Analyze phase of DMADV deals with comparing and finalizing possible solutions with respect to customer needs by using tools like Pugh matrix etc. Analyze phase of DMAIC tries to figure out root cause of process deviation.
  • Improve phase of DAMIC eliminates the defects from the existing process and align them with customer’s expectations. Design phase of DMADV deals with building new six sigma product/process.
  • Validate phase of DMADV ensures that newly developed products/processes conform with the customer’s needs. The control phase of DMAIC ensures that a modified process won’t deviate further from its current performance level.


Both DMADV and DMAIC are essential six sigma methodologies for improving quality of product/process. Broadly, DMADV deals with new design or redesign, while DMAIC deals with improving some existing process to make it align with customer’s needs.