SIPOC is a high-level, visual diagram (tool) for documenting all the relevant elements of a process. It is used to define: suppliers, inputs, outputs, and customers within a process SIPOC (also known as SIPOC-R) stands for:
- Suppliers: Systems, people or organizations (internal or external) that provide the materials, technology or information necessary to make the process occur.
- Inputs: Materials, information or other resources the suppliers provide that are consumed or transformed in the process.
- Process: High-level actions or activities that transform the inputs into the outputs.
- Outputs: Products or services that the process produces and the customer uses.
- Customer: The main users of the process’s output
- Requirements: Specifications for the inputs and output in a process which are necessary to complete the process from the viewpoint of the customer of the inputs or outputs.
- Beginning an improvement project, to understand the basics that make up the process.
- Determining the boundaries or scope of a project.
- Gathering information that can be useful in building lower level process maps.
- Recording collective knowledge about a process.
- Defining a new process.