John F. Graham, ASQ Quality Press, 2017, 56 pp., $14 member, $24 list (book)
Too many organizations still implement an ISO 9001 quality management system (QMS) without the support or involvement of top management. This well-known fact explains why organizations cannot fully benefit from the QMS implementation. The key features of The Magic of ISO 9001 are the concepts that go beyond basic implementation steps.
The standard tells you what to implement, but this book focuses more on how and why. The book flows according to three sections:
Organize: How to start with a strong, solid foundation
Scrutinize: Steps to build a QMS with a solid foundation that keeps growing and improving.
Optimize: How to ensure the system will evolve and support the growth and prosperity of the organization.
This short book is a motivating eye-opener. It offers support for managers who are involved in creating a certified and living QMS that will be considered an investment, not an expense. The book offers motivation and support for anyone leading the ISO 9001 implementation effort.
Quality Assurance: Applying Methodologies for Launching New Products, Services and Customer Satisfaction
D.H. Stamatis, CRC Press, 2015, 652 pp., $99.95 list (book)
Did you know that the average new car has more than 30,000 individual parts, or that the average new airplane features more than 1 million? Imagine the level of detail, the time spent planning and the incredible amount of work required for completing a manufacturing project involving that many potential variables.
The author intends not only to shed light on the methods, tools, processes and procedures employed in such an undertaking, but he also provides a significant amount of real-world experience and lessons learned from his years of work in the field. The author brings several decades of international and professorial experience to this book.
The author first explains the intent and benefits of having a quality department from a manufacturing standpoint, as well as the requirement of a quality-focused team committed to the work. He quantifies quality by weighing the eternal constraints of time and money, explaining that the goal should always be to use the resources available to meet the customer’s expectations, not necessarily go above and beyond or gold-plate the product.
A benefit of this specificity is that the reader is shown the differences in quality assurance programs from automaker to automaker, with several surprising examples from the American side of the business.
Conceptually, the book regularly reminds the reader of the importance of the relationship between good leadership and a product that successfully satisfies the customer. This theme is critical because it allows the reader to understand how the whole organization must buy in to the level of service required for success.
For all its benefits, this book has too much information to be regularly referenced as a handbook for the workplace. This book shows everything. It may behoove the reader to approach the text with the intent of placing bookmarks and cataloging how the information could be applied to his or her real-world work. That may be the only way to effectively reference the book and deploy the information appropriately.
Overall, this is an excellent reference for any professional looking to expand his or her knowledge of quality, lean or Six Sigma, while also understanding the importance and value of good leadership and teamwork in any environment that produces or refines a product for the customer.
Winter Springs, FL
The Facility Manager’s Guide to Safety and Security
John Henderson, CRC Press, 2016, 270 pp., $79.95 list (book)
If you are responsible for operating and maintaining any type of physical facility—whether it is a plant site or an office—you need this book for reference. Focusing on elements of crime prevention through environmental design, the author provides common sense concepts and user-friendly ideas that guide owners and managers in ensuring an appropriate workplace for employees and visitors while reducing the likelihood of crime or injury.
Most facilities have common functions that can be managed in a similar manner. Managers should focus on the two lower levels of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs (physiological and safety) and find out what is really happening, as opposed to guessing. Then they can provide easily understood and practiced policies and procedures to achieve safe and secure space while at the same time, reducing risk and liability to employees, employers and owners.
Primary areas of concern are identified and outlined. Monitoring and corrective action methods are proposed. Each is thoroughly discussed using stories and checklists to include the span of consideration required.
After understanding the interconnecting issues, a comprehensive plan for implementation can be designed, which will result in a professional-looking facility that can be run in a manner to discourage crime and mischief.
This book is not a shortcut for achieving what is necessary, nor developing an appropriate facility culture. It does allow the reader to benefit from the author’s years of experience and provides proven best practices for everyone.
Marc A. Feldman
The Innovator’s Prescription: A Disruptive Solution for Healthcare
Clayton M. Christensen, Jerome H. Grossman and Jason Hwang, McGraw Hill Education, 2009, 496 pp., $37 list (book)
This book is about the current state of healthcare in the United States and what can be done to improve it. While lamenting the critical condition of the current healthcare system, the authors emphasize many of the issues plaguing the system and offer ideas and solutions.
The book contains 11 chapters. The first chapter with the role of disruptive technology and business model innovation in making products and services affordable and accessible.
The second chapter focuses on the technological enablers of disruption. There are interesting discussions about how the art of medicine becomes a science, precision medicine, including its past and present, and the issue of personalizing medicine.
The third chapter talks about the business model of a hospital. The authors argue that hospitals without focus may have a larger overhead. Those with focus and specialization may offer limited services more efficiently, at a lower cost, and with higher quality and reliability.
The fourth chapter focuses on disrupting the business model of the physician’s practice. There is a discussion about the inefficiencies in this model versus the more efficient workings of retail clinics such as MinuteClinic. The authors also cover quality issues and the role of information technology such as telemedicine.
Chapter five discusses disruptive solutions for the care of chronic disease, including assuring adherence to therapy.
In chapter six, the authors emphasize the importance of integration to ensure quality of care at a relatively lower cost.
Chapter seven deals with reimbursement system and related issues. The authors discuss some solutions for the uninsured and the poor.
Chapter eight is about the pharmaceutical industry. Some of the topics discussed include outsourcing dangers, the clinical trials process of today and tomorrow, changes in the marketing of pharmaceutical products, and the impact of generic drugs.
Chapter nine gets into the future directions for medical devices and diagnostic equipment, and chapter 10 dwells on the present and future of medical education. The authors call for continuous improvement in medical education, including the integration of science and clinical education, true rotations for clinical learning, and a focus on the types of medical professionals that society will need.
In the last chapter, the authors discuss regulatory reform and the disruption of healthcare.
This book is highly thought provoking and is a must-read for anyone involved in the field of healthcare. Quality and continuous improvement professionals in the field of healthcare will likely benefit from the numerous suggestions and ideas presented in this book for improving the current healthcare system.