Gabriel Varela, quality assurance, Wrigley Co., Silao, Mexico
Gabriel Varela, a new ASQ member, works in quality assurance for Wrigley Co. in Silao, Mexico. There, he recently took on a new role involving statistical process control (SPC) implementation in the production of Wrigley’s chewing gum lines. Before working for Wrigley, Varela worked for an adhesive company in the research and development area, creating new hot-melt adhesives.
Varela earned a degree in industrial chemical engineering from the Instituto Politecnico Nacional in Mexico City. As a new ASQ member, he is getting involved in ASQ’s SPC and Six Sigma matters and activities.
He recently answered questions concerning Six Sigma and overall quality.
What do you think is most important in implementing a Six Sigma project?
I think the most important thing in implementing a Six Sigma project would be to use the method as part of the philosophy that all our associates must learn Six Sigma, as well as SPC, to improve operators’ skills.
Why do you think Six Sigma is important?
I consider Six Sigma to be important, because by controlling our processes, we’ll be able to minimize process deviations or variations, resulting in production cost reduction, trim reduction, scrap reduction, an increased customer’s production line efficiencies and optimization of raw material delivery times. Additionally, the most important thing is to meet the product specification and consumer needs.
Why do you think quality is important?
Quality is important because if we implement quality methods, techniques and systems, we’ll guarantee minimum process deviations, as well as meet product specifications and customer needs in a timely manner.
What’s your favorite benefit of quality?
My favorite benefit of quality is to implement and standardize systems and methods like SPC to see how one process without control can be changed to a controlled process.
Why did you choose to go into the quality field?
First of all, I enjoy implementing SPC tools into our process lines. I also like to work together with operators and production supervisors to implement these tools, use mathematic tools and train operators.
What’s your best advice to someone new to quality?
Learn and apply tools and methods into your process lines.