A systematic review of Lean Six Sigma for the manufacturing industry

Saja Ahmed Albliwi, Jiju Antony, Sarina Binti Abdul Halim Lim

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    209 Citations (Scopus)


    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore the most common themes within Lean Six Sigma (LSS) in the manufacturing sector, and to identify any gaps in those themes that may be preventing users from getting the most benefit from their LSS strategy. This paper also identifies the gaps in current literature and develops an agenda for future research into LSS themes. 

    Design/methodology/approach: The following research is based on a review of 37 papers that were published on LSS in the top journals in the field and other specialist journals, from 2000 to 2013.

    Findings: Many issues have emerged in this paper and important themes have cited which are: benefits, motivation factors, limitations and impeding factors. The analysis of 19 case studies in the manufacturing sector has resulted in significant benefits cited in this paper. However, many gaps and limitations need to be explored in future research as there have been little written on LSS as a holistic strategy for business improvement.

    Practical implications: It is important for practitioners to be aware of LSS benefits, limitations and impeding factors before starting the LSS implementation process. Hence, this paper could provide valuable insights to practitioners.

    Originality/value: This paper is based on a comprehensive literature review which gives an opportunity to LSS researchers to understand some common themes within LSS in depth. In addition, highlighting many gaps in the current literature and developing an agenda for future research, will save time and effort for readers looking to research topics within LSS.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)665-691
    Number of pages27
    JournalBusiness Process Management Journal
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - Jun 2015


    • Benefits
    • Future research
    • Impeding factors
    • Lean six sigma
    • Limitations
    • Motivation factors

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Business, Management and Accounting (miscellaneous)
    • Business and International Management


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