What is DMAIC (define, measure, analyze, improve, control)? - Definition from WhatIs.com


DMAIC (define, measure, analyze, improve, control)

Part of the Project management glossary:

DMAIC (define, measure, analyze, improve, control) is an approach to problem-solving defined by Motorola as part of the Six Sigma management philosophy. 

DMAIC, which is pronounced "de-may-ick," is a tool for improving an existing process. The steps can be summarized as follows.

  • Define: State the problem, specify the customer set, identify the goals, and outline the target process.
  • Measure: Decide what parameters need to be quantified, work out the best way to measure them, collect the necessary data, and carry out the measurements by experiment.
  • Analyze: Identify gaps between actual and goal performance, determine causes of those gaps, determine how process inputs affect outputs, and rank improvement opportunities.
  • Improve: Devise potential solutions, identify solutions that are easiest to implement, test hypothetical solutions, and implement actual improvements.
  • Control: Generate a detailed solution monitoring plan, observe implemented improvements for success, update plan records on a regular basis, and maintain a workable employee training routine.

DMAIC, which is used to regain control, should not be confused with a similar Six Sigma process called Sigma DMADV. DMADV stands for "define, measure, analyze, design, verify." This set of steps is applied to new processes to make sure that they achieve Six Sigma quality. 

Six Sigma methodologies, which were originally used in manufacturing to improve quality, are now used in many disciplines including project management, education and agile software development. All Six Sigma processes are executed by Six Sigma experts designated according to "belt color," using a scheme similar to the ones used in martial arts.

Dan Delaiarro provides an overview of DMAIC as it applies to the Six Sigma process.

This was last updated in September 2012
Contributor(s): Stan Gibilisco
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

Related Terms


  • huddle room

    - A huddle room is a small conference area, typically seating 3-6 people and equipped with conferencing and collaboration technologies. (WhatIs.com)

  • Hofstadter's law

    - Hofstadter’s law is the observation that “It always takes longer than you expect, even when you take into account Hofstadter's Law.” (WhatIs.com)

  • management by objective (MBO)

    - Management by objective (MBO) is a model in which employees and their managers collaboratively develop, define and explicitly agree to objectives. The purpose of MBO is to increase productivity and... (WhatIs.com)


  • Project management

    - Terms related to project management, including definitions about project management methodologies and tools.

  • Internet applications

    - This WhatIs.com glossary contains terms related to Internet applications, including definitions about Software as a Service (SaaS) delivery models and words and phrases about web sites, e-commerce ...

Ask a Question About DMAIC (define, measure, analyze, improve, control)Powered by ITKnowledgeExchange.com

Get answers from your peers on your most technical challenges

Tech TalkComment



    Contribute to the conversation

    All fields are required. Comments will appear at the bottom of the article.