Organizational Accreditation

Problem: Who Certifies Whom?

The lack of standardized accreditation in the Lean Six Sigma industry can be a challenge for those seeking recognition and validation of their training and certification programs. This creates confusion and inconsistency in the industry, which is further evident in certain program requirements. The existing accreditation standards are narrow and developed by small communities of accreditors, which do not represent the entire Lean Six Sigma community. An inclusive and transparent approach is required to ensure that all practitioners can contribute to the creation and enforcement of accreditation standards. This calls for the need for a community of practice to promote collaboration and facilitate the development of a continuously evolving body of knowledge that is widely recognized as the industry standard.

Solution 1: BoK Universal Review Panel (BURP)

We know the importance of a good laugh, and that’s why we created BURP – a PAID board consisting of 10-20 members from different regions, ethnicities, cultures, and industries. Here are some key points about BURP:

  • BURP’s board consists of a President, a Vice President, and members from diverse backgrounds.
  • Board members serve for two years, with half of the board turning over every year.
  • Board members can serve more than one term (not consecutively).
  • The President of BURP serves for three years and can serve more than one term (not consecutively).
  • The Vice President of BURP serves for two years and can serve more than one term (not consecutively).

Here is how the BoK is intended to work:

  • The BoK should not exceed 100 line items.
  • The revisions/updates are collected, organized, and reviewed by the board, and then put up for a vote by the community in either June or December (the date closest to the revision/update submission date will be considered).
  • Members of the Wiki BoK community (register here for free) are notified via email and afforded the opportunity to vote.
  • For a revision/update to be incorporated into the Wiki BoK, the revision/update must receive 80% “make the change” votes by the community and board. The voting period starts on the day the email is published and lasts for 30 days.

Please read the entire BoK before clicking on the “Contribute” button below, as the knowledge element you’re looking for may be located elsewhere. Wiki BoK acknowledges that many knowledge elements could fit into several categories, so we carefully debated and chose the “best fit” to ensure that all knowledge elements were included.

To contribute to the Wiki BoK

  • Read the BoK in its entirety.
  • Press any “Contribute To The Wiki BoK” button.
  • Once you click the button, refer to the process flow provided in the form and use the example below as a guide:
      • Your name (e.g., Jim Smith)
      • Category Name -> Concept Name -> Knowledge Element # (e.g., People -> Leadership -> #3) -> Identify the appropriate column (e.g., Level 1)
      • Insert the original wording (e.g., “Recall the enterprise vision and mission”)
      • Propose new wording (e.g., “Know the enterprise vision and mission”)
      • Submit a brief explanation to state your case (e.g., “Recall” minimizes what organizations desire out of all team members. To “know” is a slightly higher taxonomy and holds Level 1 to a higher standard.)
Solution 2: We Don't Have All The Answers, But "WE" Do!

As the original authors of the Wiki BoK, we acknowledge that we don’t have all the answers. However, we firmly believe that the collective wisdom of the Lean Six Sigma community does! We invite you to partner with us in continuously improving the BoK, which covers all aspects of Lean Six Sigma and transcends all industries. We recognize that no small group or organization can accomplish this alone. While IASSC, CSSC, and ASQ have made valuable contributions to our field, they have limitations in meeting the needs of the broader community. With your involvement, the Wiki BoK can become the definitive community-inspired standard for Lean Six Sigma. So, we encourage you to join us in this exciting endeavor.

Problem: We Are All Unique

Maintaining standards requires a massive effort from the community. During our research, we conducted interviews with various organizations, individuals, and consultants who deliver training based on specific BoKs. We discovered that adherence to these BoKs was often poor. In one particular phone call, we asked about training for a specific exam and spoke with the owner of a consulting firm. He claimed to train hundreds of people each year for the “exam.”

Firstly, it is important to note that focusing solely on training for an exam is not practical nor valuable. Additionally, during interviews with various organizations, individuals, and consultants delivering training for certain BoK’s, we found that adherence to the claimed BoK is often inadequate.

One particular instance involved a consulting firm that claimed to train hundreds of individuals per year for a certain exam. However, the BoK they purportedly followed required at least 35 contact hours for LSSGB, yet this firm claimed to teach GB in just two days and BB in one week. Furthermore, they asserted that this would lead to “certification,” which was concerning to say the least. Unfortunately, this is not an isolated example and similar incidents occur regularly.

Solution: It's Not My Problem, It's Our Problem!

Diploma mills are not welcome here! Our community of practice is important to us, and we believe that most individuals are dedicated to maintaining high standards. While our process may seem demanding, it is essential to ensure that our community is respected and in-demand. 

Here’s how we aim to address the issue of non-compliance and minimize its impact:


Bi-annual re-accreditation process to ensure accountability, with a nominal fee of $500 per year


The BURP oversees the accreditation and re-accreditation process to maintain fairness and impartiality


You have direct access to file a “Non-Compliance Grievance” through a designated form, and we will investigate and notify you of our findings


You are invited to participate in a quarterly town hall to voice your concerns and contribute to the ongoing improvement of our community.

We want to clarify that the standards set by the Wiki BoK will not deviate beyond what is necessary for industry and organizational customization. To obtain certification for Levels 3, 4 and 5, individuals are required to pass an exam and complete a project. Although this may seem similar to other certification processes, there is an additional requirement for Level 5 certification. Candidates must go through a final DMAIC tollgate review with a board consisting of at least two Level 5 professionals.

In terms of who certifies the BoK and the certifiers themselves, the process is transparent and community-driven. Industry experts, including you and me, all have an equal say in the development and maintenance of the BoK. Other BoKs are created by a group of subject matter experts who develop and publish the BoK. However, the Wiki BoK goes beyond this. We publish the BoK and assemble a board in preparation for ideas generated by the community of users who will implement the standards. It is not my BoK or your BoK – it is our BoK, the Wiki BoK.

The Logic

The term “wiki” originates from a Greek word meaning “quick,” and it has come to represent an online collaborative platform where information can be efficiently created, edited, and shared by a community of users. The use of the term “wiki” in the name “Wiki BoK” emphasizes the collaborative nature of the development process and highlights the important role of the Lean Six Sigma community in shaping the content of the BoK.

The term “BoK,” which stands for “Body of Knowledge,” underscores the focus of the Wiki BoK on knowledge and skill acquisition, which is central to Lean Six Sigma training and certification. The BoK is a comprehensive guide that outlines the essential concepts, tools, and techniques that practitioners need to master to effectively apply Lean Six Sigma principles in their respective organizations.

The Wiki BoK recognizes that the Lean Six Sigma community is composed of diverse industry subject matter experts, each with their unique perspectives and experiences. Therefore, the development process relies heavily on the participation of industry experts who provide valuable insights and feedback to ensure that the BoK reflects the needs of the broader community.

Through the active involvement of industry subject matter experts, the Wiki BoK aims to provide a comprehensive and relevant guide for Lean Six Sigma practitioners across a wide range of industries and sectors. The community-driven approach ensures that the BoK remains up-to-date and responsive to the evolving needs of the Lean Six Sigma community.

As ideas for updates and improvements to the BoK are submitted and approved, contributors will earn recognition on the contributor’s page of our website. The page will display the contributor’s picture and bio to honor their valuable contribution to the Wiki BoK.

The Wiki BoK is designed to be a comprehensive guide for Lean Six Sigma practitioners at all levels of expertise. Rather than focusing on individual knowledge elements, the BoK provides a holistic understanding of the Lean Six Sigma methodology, covering all aspects of the approach.

The BoK serves as a reference guide for Lean Six Sigma practitioners, providing them with a framework to understand how to apply Lean Six Sigma principles and techniques to improve their organization’s processes. By viewing the BoK as a comprehensive guide, practitioners can gain a deep understanding of how Lean Six Sigma can be used to address a wide range of organizational challenges.

Furthermore, the Wiki BoK transcends all industries and sectors, making it relevant to practitioners across a broad range of contexts. This is because the BoK emphasizes the core principles and techniques that underpin the Lean Six Sigma methodology, rather than focusing on industry-specific applications.

By providing a comprehensive guide that can be applied across a range of industries and sectors, the Wiki BoK ensures that practitioners have the knowledge and skills necessary to drive process improvements and achieve better outcomes for their organizations.

The approach taken by the Wiki BoK to break down the certification levels into one or two knowledge elements per level is intentional and designed to build upon the previous levels. This approach ensures that candidates have a deep understanding of the foundational concepts before progressing to more advanced topics. By mastering each level of the certification process, candidates gain the knowledge and skills necessary to apply Lean Six Sigma methodology in their respective organizations effectively.

For instance, a candidate pursuing certification as a Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt (LSSMBB) must demonstrate a thorough understanding of all the knowledge elements from previous levels. This includes the DMAIC process, statistical process control (SPC), and hypothesis testing, among others. By building upon the knowledge gained in each previous level, candidates develop a comprehensive understanding of Lean Six Sigma methodology and its practical application.

This approach is particularly valuable as it ensures that candidates do not miss any critical concepts or principles, and they have a strong foundation to apply Lean Six Sigma effectively in real-world scenarios. Furthermore, the Wiki BoK’s approach to certification ensures that candidates receive a comprehensive and thorough education that prepares them to drive improvements and solve problems in their respective organizations.

Problem: We Are Not Ninjas

While we acknowledge the historical significance and foundation of the color belt system developed by Bill Smith, we recognize the need to modernize it to align with the current business landscape. Initially, the color belt system was created to distinguish between different levels of Six Sigma expertise within the organization and was inspired by Bill Smith’s passion for martial arts. However, we recognize that in today’s context, the color belt system may not hold significant real-world meaning or relevance.

Solution: Let's Level Up!

The Wiki BoK levels are still rooted in the traditional Six Sigma belt system, and we hold great respect for the work done by those who pioneered this methodology. However, as times change, it is important to update our language and terminology to better reflect our current business landscape. As such, we have made the decision to replace the term “belt” with “level” in our certification process.

While this change may take some time to fully implement, we are taking steps to ease the transition. For example, we will be color-coding the levels based on the former belt colors with which they align. This will provide some continuity while also reflecting the updated terminology.

Our goal is not to erase our traditions or diminish the contributions of those who came before us. Rather, it is to modernize Lean Six Sigma for our generation and ensure that it remains a relevant and effective methodology for years to come.

Problem: We Need To Modernize

The Lean Six Sigma BoK available on this platform is fully aligned with the BoK published by the Office of the Secretary of Defense in 2009, which can be accessed by clicking here. The OSD BoK was created in partnership with ASQ and served as the foundation for developing the Wiki BoK. Wiki BoK not only aligns with but also surpasses all other recognized Lean Six Sigma BoKs. 

The initial accreditation and partnership process for the Wiki BoK utilizes a sliding scale based on the reporting integrity of an organization’s annual revenue. The costs for accreditation are as follows:


For organizations with an annual revenue of

$1 – $99,999

the cost to accredit is



For organizations with an annual revenue of

$100,000 – $499,999

the cost to accredit is



For organizations with an annual revenue of

$500,00 – $999,999

the cost to accredit is



For organizations with an annual revenue of

$1,000,000 and up

the cost to accredit is


The certification of curriculum for the Wiki BoK follows a specific process to ensure its quality and adherence to the BoK’s standards. The process includes the following steps:

  • The individual and/or organization conducting the curriculum certification will perform a crosswalk of the materials and notes to ensure they align with the BoK. Click here to receive the certification crosswalk template. NOTE: In the crosswalk template, the Green Belt section has an example.
  • The BURP will review the materials and crosswalk of the curriculum and notes.
  • The BURP will provide a BACS (BoK Alignment and Continuity Score) score and feedback on the materials.
  • The BURP will issue accreditation for the curriculum and partnership approval.

Note: To receive approval for certification, organizations must score at least 80% on the certification crosswalk.

This website contains a limited amount of information, not because we are intentionally withholding it, but because people may have a limited attention span when it comes to reading. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please feel free to click the button below to send us an email.