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Total Quality Management Guide

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					This is a guide that provides information about how a company can enact proper quality
management standards. Quality management not only refers to the quality of products,
but it can also refer to product consistency and organization. This guide provides
information about quality assurance, quality control, and quality improvement. This
guide should be used by small businesses or other entities that want to ensure their
products have proper quality management standards.
Total Quality Management Guide
The Elements of Quality Management and How They’re Applied


Total
Total Quality Management Guide
Table of Contents

 Introduction ......................................................................................................................................1
 Quality Assurance ............................................................................................................................4
 Quality Control ................................................................................................................................5
 Quality Improvement .......................................................................................................................6
 APPENDIX A: PRODUCTION DESIGN ASSESSMENT ...........................................................9
 APPENDIX B: ROOT CAUSE ANALYSIS .................................................................................9
 ........................................................................................................................................................10
 APPENDIX C: COMMUNICATING DATA ..............................................................................11




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  Total Quality Management Guide
Introduction
When the Industrial Revolution brought about mass production, individual craftsmanship
diminished. Individual craftsmen managed quality simply by sales -- a customer would either
accept the workmanship, or not. While it may have been Japan that first implemented the idea of
quality management in manufacturing, it was an American, Walter A. Shewhart, who is known
as the “Father of Statistical Quality.” This was a result
of his theory of maintaining a statistical process control      “Quality is never an accident; it is always the result
                                                                of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction
through the reduction of variation. What that means is          and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice
that if we can mass produce one product or service in           of many alternatives.”
                                                                                 HYPERLINK "http://www.famous-
such a way as to make each unit identical, the chance                quotes.com/author.php?aid=2581" William A.
for error goes down and the quality goes up.                                                                    Foster
Today the concept of quality management is applied in
all types and sizes of businesses. It reaches across
different service industries; and is put to use in the fields of manufacturing, healthcare,
government, food services, and public schools. Quality means different things for different
industries, and takes a different meaning depending on whether a product, a service, or a
combination of both is offered.
For example, some common characteristics that are reviewed in order to assess the quality of a
product will include:
     Aesthetics                                                       Performance

     Availability                                                     Reasonable Price

     Durability                                                       Reliability

     Ease of Disposal                                                 Safety

     Ease of Use                                                      Serviceability

     Maintainability                                                  Simplicity of Design




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While the characteristics that define quality in service-driven industries include:

     Accuracy                                                         Reliability

     Availability                                                     Responsiveness

     Communication                                                    Safety

     Competence                                                       Security

     Completeness                                                     Timeliness
     Credibility                                                      Understanding the Customer




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The concept of Quality Management is based around three primary areas: (1) quality control; (2)
quality assurance; and (3) quality
improvement. Within each of these
categories, there are general criteria that
must be contemplated related to quality.
The seven main criteria that affect any
business are:
    1) Leadership

    2) Strategic Planning

    3) Customer Focus

    4) Measurement, Analysis, and
       Knowledge Management

    5) Workforce Focus

    6) Process Management

    7) Results


For each criterion, importance, strength,
and improvement goals must be assessed and addressed. Assessments alone cannot improve
quality, which is why plans for improvement are critical. Such plans must include milestones
and deadlines so that progress toward achievement of each goal can be measured along the way.
The three categories of quality – control, assurance, and improvement – are sometimes
interchanged due to a lack of understanding of each of them. There are excellent definitions of
quality assurance and quality control provided by the American Society for Quality (ASQ) on its
website:
        Assurance:
        The planned and systematic activities implemented in a quality system so that quality
        requirements for a product or service will be fulfilled.

         Control:
         The observation techniques and activities used to fulfill requirements for quality.


What this means, then, is that assurance is the act of planning out the proper steps to ensure
quality, while control is the matter of checking the implementation of those steps and creating
corrective action plans to fix them if they’re not working. Quality improvement, then, takes the
corrective action plans used in the control process and implements changes so that the proper
assurance is continually applied.




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                                                                   Quality Assurance
                                                                   As the ASQ has defined it, quality
                                                                   assurance means planning out methods for
                                                                   maintaining quality, and developing
                                                                   functional activities that will allow an
                                                                   organization to meet those plans. A
                                                                   popular catch phrase for doing this is,
                                                                   “Error Proofing.” The goal of error
                                                                   proofing is to either eliminate the
                                                                   possibility of an error, or, if one occurs, to
                                                                   catch it immediately. Obviously, keeping
                                                                   the error from occurring in the first place is
                                                                   preferable to dealing with it on the back
                                                                   end, when it can be more time consuming,
                                                                   frustrating, and costly than simply
preventing it.
Error Proofing a Start-Up Business
Studies since the 1990s have led to the conclusion that product design and process design need to
occur concurrently. In other words, when a product it designed, it should be designed while
always asking the question, “How will it be produced?” When design and process come together
at the beginning of a production project, for example, it becomes significantly easier to ensure
that appropriate fail-safe methods, and efficient production with a decreased chance of future
errors, are built right in.
The concept of error proofing can also be applied to service industries. When setting up a
business that will offer services to customers, rather than a material product, it is important to
structure the process for customer ordering, communication, and delivery of the service in a way
that will make the customer happy while still netting a profit. A poorly designed process will
result in customer dissatisfaction, which, in turn, results in attempts by the provider to correct the
issue, ultimately costing time that is not going into making the next customer happy, and making
a profit.
It is not difficult to understand this formula for simplicity.
Any new process should be approached with this in mind. If you can keep the process simple, it
will be simple to avoid errors, and simple to address them once they occur.




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Error Proofing an Existing Business
Where it is not possible to error proof during the start-up phase of a business because sales or
production is already well underway, there must be a different approach than that used with a
start-up business. There are available several programs of quality management software that
integrate nicely with business automation systems, and these can be a huge boost to get a value-
added quality management program off the ground.
        A note about automation: The process of error proofing your business may include
        purchasing built-in technology that can prevent certain errors, but the experts agree that
        there are some activities that are much more easily and efficiently performed by a human
        being, and can, in fact, save a company money over what robotics or other technology
        would cost.




Quality Control
As the title suggests, quality control is a matter of controlling a process so that it meets the
requirements of the plans and activities for maintaining quality from the assurance stage. This
also means setting up the control process from the beginning to make sure it includes methods to
measure key factors related to quality indicators.
Maintaining the standards set by quality assurance is the entire goal of quality control. To
accomplish a meaningful program of quality control, you must know at what point the systems
and processes you have in place are most likely to fail. You will need to assess your processes to
determine which of them have already failed, which of them are likely to fail, and which of them
are working to par. In the case of processes that do work, an examination of why they work can
provide ideas on how to improve others that are not doing so well.
Quality control means building in stop-gaps – places in your process where it is easy to see if
things are functioning according to plan. Once a product has reached the end of the production
line, or a customer has expressed dissatisfaction with a service, it’s too late. Taking stock along
the way can provide opportunities to correct issues before they become bigger issues.

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See the attached Appendices for assessment tools, and risk analysis methods that can help
identify the points in the process where you may be experiencing problems. These will be the
ones that require the most attention and resources. (Safety is a great place to start, as accidents in
the workplace cost businesses untold millions each year1.)




Quality Improvement
Quality improvement can be defined as being the measures an organization takes to increase
efficiency and reduce errors in either the product or the service it provides. It is an ongoing
process that identifies problems and addresses problems discovered during the quality control
phase. Once a problem or issue has been identified, quality improvement measures must be in
place to immediately ‘stop the bleeding’ – that is to prevent any further damage, injury, or harm
from occurring in the same way. This first step may not be the appropriate long-term solution,
which will most likely require an in-depth review of all the factors that created the issue to start
with. Such a review, if done properly, will point to the solution that will prevent recurrence of
the issue in the most efficient manner possible.


1
          The Bureau of Labor Statistics, of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, releases an annual
report that provides information on the number of workplace injuries and illnesses that occurred during the previous
year. That report can be accessed at Industry Injury and Illness Data, and depicts some alarming figures
which would suggest that a business should begin the process of assessing the design of its systems by considering
safety issues that have already arisen.

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A value-added quality improvement process will address five areas within any business. The
ultimate goal is for the company’s vision statement to be achieved as the result of following a
process that works as intended. Most companies will share the two common goals of being able
to satisfy customers while maintaining the most efficient methods of providing the work. These
goals are almost always present in some form or fashion in a company’s strategic planning
process, as should a working program of quality improvement.
The organization’s human resources fit
into the mix in two categories – leaders
and staff. Both categories of personnel
need to trustworthy and able to trust one
another and a quality improvement
process can be developed to build that
trust. Additionally, quality improvement
activities can help encourage leadership
to be approachable and inspirational; and
help staff to be collaborative and
committed to the company’s goals.
A quality improvement process must
include methods for addressing the
following components:
     Customer focus

     Data analysis                                                    Quality processes

     Empowered staff                                                  Recognition

     Measurement systems                                              Teamwork

     Problem solving                                                  Trained staff




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There is a cycle that was most likely developed in the healthcare industry that teaches that
continuous quality improvement requires the following steps, and really, they are the heart of the
entire quality management umbrella:
                                                Plan: This is where the quality assurance stage
                                                plays a huge part, as each process must be
                                                analyzed in order to determine what changes
                                                would be beneficial. Having that information
                                                allows an organization to create a plan for making
                                                those changes.
                                                Do: No plan will ever work unless it is carried
                                                out, so this step in the cycle is a reminder to do
                                                those things that the company’s quality
                                                improvement plan requires, but to start small, if
                                                possible, and give the plan a trial run, so to speak.
                                                Study: Use quality control methods to ensure that
                                                the changes are working as anticipated.
                                                Act: If the change works, then it can be rolled out
                                                to all involved stakeholders in the process. If the
                                                change does not work, revise it, or start over
                                                completely until an improvement is realized.
Summary
While quality may never be considered a revenue center, it should be. Quality improvement
provides ‘soft savings’ to organizations that show up as reduced error rates, fewer man hours
spent on customer complaints, and fewer instances of break downs in a system or process. For
an industry such as healthcare, this can mean the difference between patient safety and a
devastating medical error.
The tools and forms included in the following Appendices can help you to plan-do-study-act in
your own organization to improve your methods of total quality management.
     Appendix A: Production Design Assessment

     Appendix B: Root Cause Analysis

     Appendix C: Communicating Data




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APPENDIX A: PRODUCTION DESIGN ASSESSMENT
There are many different tools and assessments that a company can use to either check its
progress toward quality assurance goals, or when issues occur. Conducting an assessment will
be based primarily around the functions of your particular business, but there are some basics
that will get you started.
Design Assessment
Assessing the design of a production
based business should include the
components presented in this chart.
For the manufacturing design process,
building in quality stop-gaps from the
beginning can significantly decrease
incidents of error. A design assessment
flow such as the one shown below
should be considered during start-up.




APPENDIX B: ROOT CAUSE ANALYSIS
One of the first steps that should be taken when an issue is identified is to determine the causes
of the issue. A tool that can be very helpful in this process is a fishbone diagram, such as the one
shown below for manufacturing. A quality improvement committee should be formed and

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tasked with determining root cause and proposed corrective action for the identified issue. This
committee needs to include representatives from each area of the business that the issue affects,
so that there are no components missed when determining what part of the process failed.
Draw the fishbone on a large whiteboard and allow committee members to just call out every
task under each functional area that may have contributed to the issue. Once you have the details
loaded, each component should be individually scrutinized until everything except the problem-
causing factor can be ruled out. Starting with more, rather than less, is strongly recommended –
it is easier to rule something out than to address something that was missed.
Keep in mind that often it is not just one factor that causes a failure. In fact, most times it is a
combination of several contributing factors. When those root factors are isolated, it becomes
easier to craft a plan of corrective action that addresses the entire system, and does what quality
management is supposed to do – prevents the issue from recurring.




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APPENDIX C: COMMUNICATING DATA
Once an issue has been identified and the root cause ferreted out, that information will need to be
communicated to stakeholders tasked with approving the corrective action plan, then to staff that
need to understand how their actions fit into the process of achieving the plan. A Pareto chart is
a good way to communicate data, particularly if a problem is affecting several units or
departments within the business. Such a chart can be modified to fit the particular situation and
to show, quite dramatically, how each area is affected by a failure in quality assurance.




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DOCUMENT INFO
Description: This is a guide that provides information about how a company can enact proper quality management standards. Quality management not only refers to the quality of products, but it can also refer to product consistency and organization. This guide provides information about quality assurance, quality control, and quality improvement. This guide should be used by small businesses or other entities that want to ensure their products have proper quality management standards.
This document is also part of a package Project Management Starter Kit 18 Documents Included