Branching Out

Abstract:Three questions an improvement team should ask themselves is what am I trying to accomplish, what changes can we make to achieve improvements and how will we know when changes are improvements? The first two questions are usually easy to answer, but the answers to the third question can be elusive without proper tools for measurement. Measurement trees can aid in improvement projects by taking into account changes requested by frontline workers and breaking down all the components and process steps that would be involved in making a change. Measurement trees consist of five areas: outcome measurement, process measurement, process step measurement, balance measurement and plan-do-study-act measurement. The process of creating the measurement tree includes comparing outcomes requested by workers and information collected from normal processes. These trees can provide a visual map between improvements made and the outcomes of those …

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