Rahul Iyer (Advanced Innovation Group Pro Excellence)
Six Sigma Certification

Six Sigma is a process improvement methodology that began in manufacturing in the mid-1980s at Motorola. Today, many other industries embrace Six Sigma, including: 

Six Sigma is required to improve business processes. A Six Sigma Certification is necessary for every professional across industries, and becoming a Six Sigma White Belt, Yellow Belt, Green Belt, or Black Belt is highly beneficial. Realizing this, you may have several questions about these certifications. 

This blog provides everything you need to know about Six Sigma Certifications. In it, we will cover:

  1. What is Six Sigma?
  2. What are the salaries of Six Sigma Certified Professionals?
  3. What is Six Sigma Certification?
    1. Six Sigma White Belt Certification
    2. Six Sigma Yellow Belt Certification
    3. Six Sigma Green Belt Certification
    4. Six Sigma Black Belt Certification
    5. Six Sigma Master Black Belt Certification
  4. Why is achieving Six Sigma Certification important for individuals?
  5. Why is Six Sigma so important for organizations?
  6. Will the Six Sigma Certification help you in getting a job?
  7. Is it necessary to achieve the Six Sigma Certification from a few known institutions?
  8. What is the difference between Lean Six Sigma Certification and Six Sigma Certification?
  9. Conclusion

What is Six Sigma?

Six Sigma is a set of methods and tools for business process improvement and quality management that focuses on identifying and eliminating defects. One of the many benefits of Six Sigma is that it directly impacts Cost Savings for your organization by improving processes to increase the repeatability and accuracy of process results.

What are the salaries of Six Sigma Certified professionals?

What are the salaries of six sigma professionals?

The salaries discussed in this blog reflect how much a typical Black Belt position is paid across the globe. The specific salaries depend on which industry and organization you focus on. We also want to clarify that your actual salary level may vary from these representative salary levels.

An individual qualified as a Six Sigma Black Belt increases your chances of getting a much higher salary than peers in Operations or other functions. Let’s discuss some actual figures.

According to Indeed.com, a Black Belt’s salary in the United States ranges from US$99,000 to US$130,000 per year. Glassdoor.com suggests the average base pay of over US$97,000/year, and the salary for most open jobs ranges between US$106,000 to US$191,000 per year. Both sources suggest very high confidence in these salary figures.

Similarly, per Payscale.com, a Black Belt’s salary in the United Kingdom range from GBP£44,000 to £50,000, while Glassdoor.com suggests an average base pay of over GBP£46,000 per year. And the salary range for open positions is from GBP£49,000 to GBP£64,000. The confidence level is high for these numbers as well.

If you are in India, Payscale.com suggests a Black Belt’s salary ranges from INR₹1 million to 3 million rupees per year, while Glassdoor.com suggests an average base pay of INR₹1.8 million. Salaries range from INR₹1.2 million to INR₹3.3 million with a very high confidence level.

We can confidently say that salaries in the United States can go beyond US$250,000 for suitable Black Belt candidates. Similarly, in the U.K., the wages are much higher than those projected by these websites. In India, the salary ranges can vary from INR₹1.6 million to more than INR₹5 million.

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What is Six Sigma Certification?

Six Sigma Certification is a documented validation of your mastery over Six Sigma. It conveys that you have the knowledge and skills to execute Six Sigma projects.

What are the different levels of Six Sigma certifications?

You can achieve your Six Sigma certification at different levels. These are:

  1. Six Sigma White Belt Certification
  2. Six Sigma Yellow Belt Certification
  3. Six Sigma Green Belt Certification
  4. Six Sigma Black Belt Certification
  5. Six Sigma Master Black Belt Certification

We’ll take a moment to understand each certification level and its eligibility criteria.

Six Sigma White Belt Certification

Until recently, the Six Sigma Yellow Belt was the beginning of your Six Sigma journey. However, the Six Sigma White Belt has started to gain prominence in the last few years. 

As a Six Sigma White Belt, you are the subject matter expert in your business process. You must have an intimate working knowledge of the intricate details of your business process. This means:

Eligibility criteria 

For the Six Sigma White Belt certification:

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Six Sigma Yellow Belt Certification

As a Yellow Belt, you are the subject matter expert in your business process. You also play an active role in Six Sigma Green Belt and Black Belt projects. Additionally, you will have an overview of the five DMAIC phases of Six Sigma. DMAIC stands for: 

As a Yellow Belt, you:

The Six Sigma Yellow Belt is a part-time role. Yellow Belt projects are smaller sub-process level projects and may also be offshoots of the larger Six Sigma projects. 

For more details, check out this YouTube video. 

Eligibility criteria

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Six Sigma Green Belt Certification

As a Six Sigma Green Belt, you hold an authoritative role in any business process. You lead and drive Six Sigma Green Belt projects (generally process-level projects). This means:

In most cases, the Six Sigma Green Belt is a part-time role, though a few organizations offer it as a full-time role. 

For more details, check out this YouTube video. 

Eligibility criteria

If you have two or more years of experience, you can apply for the Six Sigma Green Belt Certification. Ideal candidates for Six Sigma Green Belt Certification are: 

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Six Sigma Black Belt Certification

As a Six Sigma Black Belt, you master the Six Sigma methodology. This means:

If you encounter any problems, you reach out to Six Sigma Master Black Belts for guidance and mentoring.

For more details, check out this YouTube video.

Eligibility criteria

If you have two or more years of experience, you are eligible to apply for the Black Belt Certification. Ideal candidates for Six Sigma Black Belt Certification are: 

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Six Sigma Master Black Belt

As a Six Sigma Master Black Belt, you are at the ultimate level of Six Sigma that an individual can attain. In this role:

Six Sigma Master Black Belt is a full-time role. For more details, check out this YouTube video. 

Eligibility criteria

A Six Sigma Master Black Belt Certification requires you:

Why is achieving Six Sigma Certification important?

Faces of different people smiling

If you go to Google trends by typing http://trends.google.com in your web URL and search for the keyword “Six Sigma,” you will see this map. The blue region indicates the keyword used by the maximum number of people on the Google Search Engine. The darker the area, the more the usage. Impressive, isn’t it?

world map showing six sigma presence

This map indicates that most organizations in every industry have embraced Six Sigma. These organizations need Six Sigma experts. Six Sigma Certification has become an essential qualification; organizations expect you to be Six Sigma Certified. 

Advantages of Six Sigma Certifications include:

Achieving a Six Sigma Certification is a norm in today’s corporate world. Organizations expect you to go the extra mile and help them achieve their business goals. With the knowledge and skills of Six Sigma, you are trained and certified to use these tools. All it requires is the commitment and time to invest in achieving the required qualification. The stronger your commitment, the more you increase your probability of shaping your career the way you want.

Why is Six Sigma so important for organizations?

Organizations come into existence to earn profits. The simple equation for profitability is:

Profit = Revenue – Cost

Profit is equal to Revenue minus Cost. In situations where the revenues are low and costs are high, profits take a beating. For organizations to survive, they must be profitable. Thus, the revenues must be high and the costs low.

Considering the phenomenon of globalization, technology, and innovation worldwide, almost every organization has a global presence in the wake of the 21st century. From the beverages brand Coca-Cola to the IT brand IBM, fashion brand Levi to telecom and computer brand Apple, automobile brand Toyota to consulting brand Delloite, each organization is making revenue by selling its products or services virtually in every continent, every country, and every city on the planet. The competition is fierce. And the opportunity to increase revenue is declining daily for all organizations.

In this situation where increasing revenues are hard to come by, how can organizations continue to earn profit? They are left with two choices:

  1. Either find another planet where they can sell their products or services to aliens — which is not possible so far
  2. Reduce Costs

And Six Sigma is a crash course in reducing cost. This methodology comes to save the day!

Packed with powerful tools, Six Sigma helps any organization put money on the table. Thus, organizations continue to embrace Six Sigma even after three decades of existence. 

Will Six Sigma Certification help you get a job?

will six sigma certification help in getting a job

To get a job with Six Sigma, you must do two things:

  1. Achieve a Six Sigma Certification
  2. Have relevant work experience

If you have both certification and experience, you are more likely than your peers to get the job you desire.

Getting a job is significantly less likely if you lack relevant experience. Your employer needs you to start performing immediately and may not be willing to invest in training you for the job.

However, Six Sigma can give you an edge even without the necessary experience: 

By achieving a Six Sigma Certification:

Is it necessary to achieve the Six Sigma Certification specifically from high-profile institutions?

No. You may achieve your certification from any institution, whether or not they are part of the International Association for Six Sigma Certification (IASSC) or the American Society for Quality (ASQ).

Are you wondering why this is the case?

A personal experience of an interviewer may shed some light on this. As an interviewer on a panel for several Fortune 500 organizations focusing on hiring Six Sigma professionals for their respective organizations, he is least interested in knowing the name of the certifying body. Instead, he is most interested in learning the candidate’s true potential. Interview questions gauge the following:

The focus is on understanding the candidate’s attitude towards the job. The goal is to seek answers to the following questions:

As an interviewer, the focus is not simply to hire candidates certified only from the “best” institutions, but instead candidates who:

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What is the difference between Lean Six Sigma and Six Sigma Certification?

Above is the most common question asked by candidates new to Six Sigma.

Six Sigma and Lean Six Sigma are both process improvement methodologies. The difference between them is the approach of each method:

Between the 1990s and early 2000s, experts independently practiced both of these approaches. With experience, they realized that combining the two methods yields outstanding results. Consequently, most practitioners started using Lean Six Sigma tools in their projects, which resulted in the emergence of Lean Six Sigma.

Today, any institution providing Six Sigma Certification includes Lean in its curriculum. When you undergo a Six Sigma training, the course material includes Lean Six Sigma by default. However, to be entirely sure:

The use of the Six Sigma credential today indicates that you are Lean Six Sigma Certified. Interviewers assume that you are aware of Lean tools. There will be one red flag, though. As you undertake a Six Sigma Certification, be concerned if:

It is not recommended to proceed with that certifying body in these situations. Lean is most commonly associated with Six Sigma, and the industry requires that you have a working knowledge of both. It is advisable that you get Lean Six Sigma Certified rather than only Six Sigma Certified.

Conclusion

Attaining the Six Sigma Certification is a necessity in today’s corporate world. Everyone wants to add value to their organization: corporate employees, team leaders, managers, senior managers, Vice Presidents, and directors. Six Sigma Certification gives you the necessary tools and techniques and the needed edge to showcase your vibrant talent. All you have to do is find the proper certification for you! 

Take a moment to review the eligibility requirements for the different Sigma belts (White Belt, Yellow Belt, Green Belt, and Black Belt) and find which certification is suitable for you. As you achieve these certifications, you are on a path to unlock your innate potential that is all set to flourish and prosper. 

Best wishes on your journey!

Page Last Updated: April 2022