The Complete Lean Enterprise

Beau Keyte and Drew Locher, Productivity Press, 2004, 136 pp., $45 (book).

The Complete Lean Enterprise: Value Stream Mapping for Administrative and Office Processes deals with an area of growing interest: the translation of lean factory principles into the office and other company environments. This is not an easy task, and previous attempts to translate ideas from manufacturing to mainstream have not always worked well. However, as Keyte and Locher point out, 90% of waste occurs outside of manufacturing units, so there is a clear need to focus on the office as well.

The book begins with an explanation of value stream mapping and principles of waste identification and management. The rest of the book then explains the detailed how-to of value stream mapping through an applied example at the fictional ABC Design company. This includes such classic flow processes as ordering and order fulfillment, but it can also be applied wherever flow occurs, such as in areas of human resources.

Having only one rolling example throughout the book––although allowing for the development of sequential detail––may limit readers’ abilities to translate the principles into their own business environment. The example links into fabrication processes, which again has benefits but may also constrain readers in making wider use of this important technique.

Overall, this is a very welcome book in an expanding field. It is clear and easy to read, even for nonquality and nonlean people. Used well, it could be the lever by which significant further savings and improved business capability are built into many different enterprises.

David Straker
Qualifications & Curriculum Authority
London, England

Integrating ISO 9001:2000 With ISO/TS 16949 and AS9100

D.H. Stamatis, ASQ Quality Press, 2004, 424 pp., $56 member, $70 list (book and CD-ROM).

Integrating ISO 9001:2000 With ISO/TS 16949 and AS9100 acts more as a handbook than a full-blown textbook. Stamatis offers brief but very useful interpretations to clarify requirements of the three standards addressed. To achieve the greatest benefit from the first part of clarifications, the reader is advised to have copies of the standards as a reference.

A large portion of the book focuses on the auditing process with emphasis on process auditing. An extensive chapter on documentation includes alternative approaches to structuring a quality manual, procedures and checklists for interviewing top management. The CD contains sample procedures and optional approaches to quality manual layout, and a helpful appendix presents approaches for formulating an FMEA.

The final chapter briefly discusses implementation of ISO 9001, AS9100 and TS 16949. However, this chapter does not allude to the implied intent of the book’s title, which is integration.

This reviewer believes the author has included material that is no longer pertinent, such as transitioning from ISO 9001:1994 to ISO 9001:2000. And, given the publication date of the book, the ISO 9001 registration statistics based on the year 2000 appear less than useful. Also, in-depth coverage of auditing, while informative, seems disproportionate to the other content of the book. While Stamatis suggests the reader think of the implementation of a quality management system as a project, there are no project planning and management guidelines provided for doing so and no references to access.

Although there are perceived negatives, much of the book’s content will be helpful in clarifying requirements of the referenced standards, documenting the appropriate quality management system for a given organization and assessing the effectiveness of the system.

Russ Westcott R.T. Westcott & Associates
Old Saybrook, CT

Lean TPM—A Blueprint For Change

Dennis McCarthy and Nick Rich, Butterworth- Heinemann, 2004, 189 pp., $59.95 (book).

Lean TPM—A Blueprint for Change offers a look at how lean thinking and total productive maintenance (TPM) practices can be integrated as one methodology to support developing robust supply chain relationships and improve overall business performance.

By McCarthy’s and Rich’s admission, the book is not intended as a comprehensive guide to these two practices and assumes the reader is already familiar with the basics. What it does offer is a user manual approach in how to deliver business benefits from their application.

At 189 pages, it is an easy read designed to be read cover to cover. Topics covered include why improvement initiatives fail and how lean TPM can address this, the route map used by successful companies achieving world-class manufacturing status, the infrastructure required to facilitate identi-
fication of hidden losses or wastes, leadership roles for a single change agenda, targeting internal processes at customer value and establishing the capability to achieve zero breakdowns. Additional chapters focus on strategic and leadership support issues, organizational flexibility and sustainability of desired operational levels.

Few, if any, case studies are included, although there are numerous sample illustrations of key concepts. Some references are made but do not preclude the effective use of this book by quality professionals in general. Overall, the text is more suited to those with a basic understanding of these two practices within a manufacturing setting who also enjoy full and sustained management support to drive effective change in an organization.

Linda Cubalchini-Travis
Simi Valley, CA

Managing the Metrology System

C. Robert Pennella, ASQ Quality Press, 2004, 175 pp., $28 member, $35 list (book).

Fundamental to any quality management initiative such as Six Sigma is the proper implementation of a measuring and test equipment (M&TE) calibration system. The statement coined by Brian Joiner in the 1980s, “In God we trust, all others bring data,” assumes the data we bring are to be trusted. The third edition of Managing the Metrology System presents, in detail, how to properly implement an M&TE calibration system with reference to well-established standards and procedures in this area.

Ten critical elements of a metrology system are considered for efficient and effective implementation:

  • Personnel.
  • Quality plan.
  • Control of documentation.
  • Control of inspection, measuring and test instruments.
  • Nonconforming products and services.
  • Corrective action.
  • Control of purchases.
  • Customer supplied products.
  • Inspection and testing.
  • Quality audits.

The book presents a detailed checklist covering these issues and a 56 page self-assessment questionnaire of metrology systems. Two case studies provide concrete examples on how to implement such systems.

The book is a useful reference for managers and engineers involved in designing and improving metrology systems.

Ron S. Kenett
KPA Ltd.
Raanana, Israel

The Supplier Management Handbook

Edited by James Bossert and ASQ Customer Supplier Division, ASQ Quality Press, 2004, 296 pp., $48 member, $60 list (book).

The sixth edition of The Supplier Management Handbook addresses the evolving role of the purchasing agent. It highlights the transformation from a traditional collector of quotes who determines the lowest bidders to a facilitator and integrator. The purchasing agent now obtains necessary experts to help evaluate and decide which supplier has the best potential to support the success of the organization’s mission.

Basic supplier management issues are discussed in individual chapters. The supplier rating chapter provides a case study of how suppliers’ performances are rated. The performance index is used to determine the best value, which encompasses not only the pricing, but also the key performances that will impact the life cycle cost of the procurement.

Readers can obtain information on how to conduct a supplier survey, issues in supplier certification and how to evaluate a supplier’s product. Industry specific topics are also included in the book, such as the management of suppliers in software, food, service and small business.

One drawback to this book is it does not specifically discuss the overlapped roles of the purchasing agent and the supplier quality professional. The merging of these roles signifies the need to rethink or redesign traditional procurement and quality roles in the management of the supplier for an organization’s success.

Shin Ta Liu
Lynx Systems
San Diego, CA

Nan’s Arsonist: A Six Sigma Mystery

Robert Barry, ASQ Quality Press, 2004, 320 pp., $20 member, $25 list (book).

Nan’s Arsonist: A Six Sigma Mystery is a wonderful book. Just the imagination used to craft a plausible and interesting mystery around the tools for quality improvement is astonishing to this reader. This is the second book in the series, although reading the first book is not necessary to understanding the plot and the characters of the second.

As inferred from the title, the plot revolves around a deadly fire in a healthcare facility. The protagonist, Nan Mills, is chief nursing officer and vice president of General Hospital. As she investigates the deadly fire, Nan visits many departments and discusses Six Sigma while assessing procedures and processes used in the hospital for quality assessment and quality improvement.

The conversations are realistic and allow Nan and other characters to bring Six Sigma to the workplace with concrete applications. Even the communication skills used in the novel are designed to be examples of good quality control and assessment practices.

The level of the book makes it suitable for those without much experience or knowledge of Six Sigma and perhaps ideal for students learning Six Sigma. While it does have a healthcare setting, the departments and processes investigated in the hospital are easily applicable to many industries or even academic institutions.

My only suggestion for future novels and for new editions of existing novels is to include a general roadmap of the processes used. Perhaps a reader’s guide to the book could be developed to make it easier for use in an academic or short course setting.

I. Elaine Allen
Babson College
Wellesley, MA

Risk Modeling, Assessment And Management

Yacov Y. Haimes, John Wiley & Sons, 2004, 837 pp., $120 (book).

Having taught risk management for more than 23 years, professor Haimes describes the art of risk management and its important applications in areas such as engineering, science, manufacturing, business, management and public policy in the second edition of Risk Modeling, Assessment and Management .

Some key revisions include a completely updated format with many new examples and problems and a new chapter on the risks of terrorism, including case studies in transportation, water supply, infrastructure interdependencies and food safety. There are new chapters on risk filtering, ranking and management, and a new focus on minimizing the costs associated with today’s more extensive risk management.

Haimes balances the quantitative and qualitative aspects of risk management, showing clearly how to quantify risk and construct probability in conjunction with real-world decision making problems. He also addresses a host of institutional, organizational, political and cultural considerations when considering an investment in risk aversion.

Incorporating real-world examples and case studies to illustrate the analytical methods under discussion, the book presents basic concepts as well as advanced material, avoiding higher mathematics whenever possible.

This book can serve as the lead work in graduate business or engineering classes on risk aversion, as well as a superb supplemental reader for students working on business, engineering or human resource degrees. Risk management professionals will find the title to be an excellent reference that will come in handy in their daily work.

Dale Farris
Groves, TX


  • Getting Started in Six Sigma, Michael Thomsett, John Wiley & Sons, 2005, 213 pp., $19.95 (book).
  • Lean Manufacturing That Works, Bill Carreira, Amacom, 2005, 295 pp., $27.95 (book).
  • RSM Simplified: Optimizing Processes Using Response Surface Methods for Design of Experiments, Mark Anderson and Patrick Whitcomb, Productivity Press, 2005, 292 pp., $50 (book and CD-ROM).

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