Dobbins, Richard K. (1986, ASQC) Honeywell Inc., Fort Washington, PA
If you compared a healthy, well functioning and capable business to a healthy, well functioning and capable human body, several very interesting similarities would become evident. These parallel situations are worthy of closer study, in order to improve our ability to identify symptoms, diagnose probable causes and prescribe effective treatment of businesses which are not enjoying the best of health. The human body, being a very complex functioning system, has several vital signs and health indicators which are closely observed by any competent examining physician. The major physiological components of the human body are: skeltal; circulatory; motor and sensory; and reasoning subsystems. Likewise, an operating business is an extremely complex system, with its own vital signs and health indicators. The major components of a business can be considered: organizational structure; financial sub-system; communications network; and strategic planning sub-system. In either instance, malfunctioning within one sub-system can cause serious illness of the whole body.The Quality Assurance function has a unique role of responsibility and opportunity to exert a positive impetus upon the financial, communications and planning sub-systems of our companies, regardless of our exact position within the organizational structure. Since we are functionally involved with all our office, factory and field groups, as well as our vendors and customers, we compare to the spinal cord within our company's communications network. Through awareness of all internal and external "quality problems", we can use quality cost analysis techniques to assess affects upon our financial circulatory system. This diagnostic approach will enhance inputs into the planning system for cost effective corrective action needs, with sustained improvement to our business health. Quality Assurance has the diagnostic tools; why don't we heal ourselves?