Building From the Basics

Abstract:Kaoru Ishikawa, one of the forefathers of quality, believed that 95% of a company’s problems could be solved with the use of certain quality tools often referred to as the basic seven. The basic seven is comprised of histograms, control charts, Pareto analysis, cause and effect diagrams, check sheets, scatter plots, and stratification. Seven quality professionals present explanations that provide the basics of how each of these tools is used. Material available online provides additional information about control charts and cause-and-effects diagrams, as well as summaries of nearly 1000 products and tools featured in the Quality Progress toolbox since …

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Wonderful basics primer- I have been offering quick quality tool refreshers to improve communications and understanding between our quality support and manufacturing personnel. This is a gold mine helping me to offer these "quality shorts".
--Sammi Owens, 01-21-2015


It is always good to get back to the basics in building a solid foundation of Quality. Only then shall we realize that the present and the future will always have a thing of the past without which we cannot be where we are.
--Leodegardo Pruna, 10-23-2013


Very informative in regards to reveling how quality starts from before we began to do anything..
Preparing is one of the most important tools quality has...
--James Peake, 06-26-2012


excellent supplementary information

Aylin N. Sener, ASQ CQPA

--Aylin N. Sener, 06-08-2012


This is an excellent article.

I am a chemical engineer. I studied at the Autonomous National University of Mexico. At the time, we used to follow the curricular program from the MIT. We even used the same books (in english. There were no translations available). We had a remarkable teacher for the Quality Control subject, Professor Benito Bucay, who was recognized as the best student of the last decades. In our class, we had a half-dozen outstanding students. One of them was Mario Molina, who was awarded the Chemistry Nobel Prize in 1995. (By then he was a MIT specialist in atmospheric chemistry).

Believe me, I know what I am talking about. We really learned these basic tools, and that is why I want to congratulate QP and the group of people that made this article possible. I am positive that many will benefit from this magnificent piece of technical article.

From my own experience, I can tell you that your articles on the basics are most valuable; and this, on Ishikawa's Seven Tools, is no exception. It will allow me to help many people to improve their processes in many ways.
--Jose-Luis Ruiz, 05-26-2012


Great article I used back in 2009 as a reference for training purposes using real life examples and the team loved.
--Homer, 05-01-2012


A great refresher. I have seen firsthand our company go from gut feel decisions to solid data analysis. Lean training has helped get manufacturing and quality personnel on the same page.
--Robert L. Neyer, 04-10-2012


Good article!
--Emmanuel Felix, 04-09-2012


Very good article
--Sivasubramanian G, 02-04-2012


Lot of ground covered. Excellent reference.
--Rachna, 07-20-2011


Excellent article! I use it for my students, too!

Ksenija Dumicic
Zagreb, CROATIA
--Ksenija Dumicic, 02-02-2011


Very useful, short and precise.
--Ulises Gonzalez, 07-02-2010


Good article. In service industry, there is no need for more tools for improvement projects. For several projects, these basic tools are more than enough. And for the teams training on these basis tools, it would suffice to bring about quality awareness.
--G. Prakash, 04-23-2009


Thanks for this article and to those who participated in putting it together. Very useful article and a must-read for those in QA departments.
--Khalfan, 02-12-2009


First at all, I would like to congratulate authors for the outstanding review of the "seven stars". In my opinion, one important drawback in this article is in the stratification topic, as authors do not employ a form to illustrate the example they used.
--Nuno Costa, 01-30-2009


Highly recommended article, two thumbs up!!
--fermin toscano, 01-29-2009


Great article. I appreciate the utilization of seven authors to describe the topics they know best. By reading this article, I am getting the review session I need while preparing for a job search and eventual interview. It helps me to concentrate on the seven most important areas I'll be required to know something about. Thanks again.
--Kevin A. McWatt, 01-27-2009


Thank you for this article. It has been shared internally with staff, and many colleagues found it very useful.
--Onkar Vagha, 01-27-2009


Outstanding Article - I shared it with our production people - a great tool to help in their understanding of these concepts and their application!
--Norm Lamontagne, 01-22-2009


This is an OUTSTANDING article on Quality Basics. I've used these in the past at different companies to educate team associates of what they are responsible for when performing their tasks. This is taught to all within the company, not just the Quality Team. I'll reference this in our company newsletters as well!
--Peter Edwards, 01-13-2009


Hey, no need to develop something fancy and time consuming, just go back to the basics! Great article, and thanks for the information to start the new year.
--John Grau, 01-13-2009


Excellent article. A great reminder that sometimes problems can be solved with basic tools.
--Diane Dixon, 01-13-2009


Informative enough to bump the brain.
--Martin Draper, 01-13-2009


This is an excellent article on simple but effective basic tools for quality improvement and development of system.
--Gary Malcolm, 01-13-2009


Very insightful indeed, but it is a pity that even such basic tools are still explained in manufacturing-based contexts, whereas the average consumer in this world is much more mature than he/she was in the times of Ishikawa and looks at deriving maximum value from not only products, but from the service and experience aspects as well. When will the Quality experts start focusing on the intangibles????
--Uday Menon, 01-13-2009


Excellent article and very useful for many certifications.
--Vinay Prakash Sharma, 01-12-2009


Thanks. Very good refresher!!
--Craig cox, 01-12-2009


Excellent! Keeps it simple.
--Manuel Hernandez, 01-11-2009


Good ! Very good ! Thanks !
--Jose Ricardo Scareli Carrijo, 01-10-2009


This is an excellent article.
--Dolores Harris, 01-10-2009


Excellent article because we need good information for our job and you are the best in it.
--Ivan Canizalez, 01-10-2009


Wonderful piece, well written and planned out. A great reminder that most times, sweet and simple is the best approach.
--Andrea Ruth, 01-09-2009


Well-written article on simple quality tools of great use. Narration is simple and clear. Graphics are equally good. Great job!
--Madambath Devidasan, 01-08-2009


I have long felt that we sometimes overlook the basic approach in favor of a more "exotic", advanced tools approach. This is an excellent summary and reminds us that we need to step back once in a while and re-think the use of the basic/effective tools.

Very good article!
--Paul Prunty, 01-07-2009


It has always been my contention that using basic tools for quality improvement and development of systems are what quality professionals should use. These tools are also simple to explain and understand to those whose processes are impacted by the improvement activities. Good job!
--Belinda Westveld, 01-04-2009


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