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Open Access

A Place to Call Home

by Leonard, Denis; Zajicek, Gary

Builder leverages quality toolbox, culture to construct house for "Extreme Makeover" TV show....


Open Access

Looping in Quality

by Awofala, Dele

The quality loop framework provides organizations with a structured approach to integrating quality throughout the product assembly process—from the workstation to the customer....


Open Access

A Step Forward

by Hampton, Debra M. Hay;

The committee draft of ISO 9001:2015 is significantly different from ISO 9001:2008, and includes new terms and clause structure. It also focuses on reducing risk and applying the process approach....


Expert Answers: March 2014

by QP Staff

Defining the customer ... incoming inspections...


Expert Answers: February 2014

by QP Staff

Controlling documents ... Showing resources in an audit...


Open Access

Career Corner: Switch Gears

by Westcott, Russell

Beat job boredom and burnout with reinvention....


Open Access

Salary Survey 2013: Behind the Results

by Hansen, Max Christian

The 2013 Salary Survey was sent to ASQ 44,945 members. There were 7,504 individual responses, for a response rate of 16.7%....


Open Access

Back to Basics: Pyramid Scheme

by Weeden, Marcia

A framework for stronger standard operating procedures....


The Service Quality Platform

by Swersey, Arthur J.

A five-step framework helps service organizations lay the foundation for building a service quality program....


Open Access

Words to Work By

by QP Staff

Readers shared their favorite quality quotes and reflected on the wisdom of the words....


Open Access

Inside Job

by Seibert, Jerry H.; Schiemann, William A.

The relationship between business performance and internal service quality is well documented, as are changes in internal service levels over time and the impact of outsourcing on internal service quality....


Open Access

At Your Service

by Schmidt, Megan

Servant leadership is a timeless concept that is especially relevant for quality organizations because of its relationship with continuous improvement. Organizations benefit from servant leadership because it creates more effective and innovative teams....


Turned On

by Scriabina, Natalia; Cort, Gary

Quality can be defined in many ways. In technical usage, quality can have two meanings: the characteristics of a product or service that influence its ability to satisfy stated or implied needs; or a product or service free of deficiencies....


Open Access

Quality vs. Safety

by Ghaleiw, Mustafa

In the oil and gas industries, quality can no longer be viewed as a nice-to-have feature. Today, quality must be considered a top priority to ensure safety throughout an organization’s operations and processes...


Innovation Imperative: The People Principle

by Merrill, Peter

Successful innovation does have a secret sauce—people. For successful innovation, we need to involve everyone in our organization....


Open Access

Standard Wise

by Combs, Oscar

View ISO 9001 as more than a QMS standard to lift business performance to new heights....


On the Map

by Schmidt, Megan

The City of Irving, TX, engages the hearts and minds of its employees to drive world-class performance. It became the second municipality to receive a Baldrige award in the program’s 25 year history in 2012....


Open Access

Measuring Up

by Hankel, Amanda

What is, and what does it mean to your organization and your industry? What does continuous improvement mean for your country, region and community, now and in the future? These are questions that, until recently, hadn’t been answered on a global level....


Standards Outlook: Road to Revision

by Cressionnie, L.L. “Buddy"

The flagship aviation, space and defense quality management system (QMS) standard has started revision activities. AS9100 is the foundation standard of the International Aerospace Quality Group (IAQG)....


Getting a Good Read

by Bruns, Todd; Bai, Rendong

The internet has forced libraries to focus on enhancing customer service through quality management. LibQUAL+ is a tool to evaluate library customer service and engage patrons as partners to close the gap between experienced and expected service....


Open Access

To All Corners of Kenya

by Darabi, Tiffany

Effective supply chains deliver products on schedule and within budget to customers. Those customers shouldn’t have to think about the behind-the-scenes process or worry about whether the goods will be delivered on time....


Expert Answers: June 2013

by QP Staff

Auditee refuses nonconformance report ... Customer service quality in the banking industry...


Mood Righting

by Thor, Scott

U.S. organizations face monumental challenges as a global economy has emerged. Arguably, the global economy is driving competitive forces to levels unimaginable only a few decades ago....


Expert Answers: May 2013

by QP Staff

Lean case studies from IT organizations...


Standards Outlook: World View

by Liebesman, Sandford

The global economy has provided organizations with many opportunities that didn’t exist even 10 years ago. On the other hand, the internet and extensive outsourcing have “flattened” the Earth, presenting organizations with many new risks....


Open Access

Paving the Way

by Anderson-Cook, Christine M.; Borror, Connie M.

Data and information are at the heart of good investigations and decision making, but are all kinds of data the same? What are the major categories and types of questions to ask to collect and analyze data?...


Open Access

Perspectives: Survey Overload

by Purdy, Derek

Some years ago, I was presented the bill at a restaurant. In addition to the itemized list of charges, the little billfold contained a customer comment card. “Wow,” I thought, “what a great idea. This place is really on the ball.”...


Open Access

Know the Why

by Ramsay, Owen

One of the primary reasons improvement projects fail is a lack of alignment with an organization’s vision, mission, goals and objectives. In an attempt to avoid that issue, a government agency in Guyana deployed a multi-tool method for improvement....


Open Access

Lessons in Labeling

by Braswell, Nina; Koroseta, Jill; Grogan, Amy

What kind of care would you want for a loved one fighting cancer? This is the question the experts at Cancer Treatment Centers of America ask themselves every day and motivates employees to create a culture where continuous improvement becomes a habit....


Online Figures - Ramsay

by Ramsay, Owen

Year Verct( dys) # Rpts FinRpts InvTech #_ Staff 2003 296 31 13 1.00 216 2004 829 24 11 2.24 190 2005 309 22 12 1.65 210 2006 222 22 9 2.35 225 2007 171 17 5 3.58 247 Verct( dys) = verification of claims cycle time # rpts = number of reports for the boar...


Salary Survey 2012: Crunching the Numbers

by Hansen, Max Christian

The 2012 survey was sent to 54,337 members. Of the 6,857 individuals who started the survey, 6,857 completed the questionnaire for a response rate of 11.2%....


Standards Outlook: From the Trenches

by Liebesman, Sandford

ISO 9001 and the COSO internal control guidance document used by financial organizations that must comply with the requirements of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act don’t have a lot in common, but one thing they share is the need to update the current version....


Shift Into High Gear

by Hankel, Amanda

When customers of tgestiona began expressing dissatisfaction about the its inefficient service and delivery processes, it began a transport optimization project that earned gold-level status in the 2012 ASQ International Team Excellence Award process....


Lasting Impression

by Stauffer, Rip; Owens, Debra

A recent paper found that quality initiatives have made significant contributions to three primary indicators of economic well-being: gross domestic product, corporate tax revenues and employment....


Healthy Returns

by Kennedy, Denise; Caselli, Richard J.; Berry, Leonard L.

The future of any enterprise depends on the quality of its customer service. All organizations—even those manufacturing products—are service organizations because all create value for customers by performing services....


Open Access

Quality in the First Person: When Is a Cappucino Not a Cappucino?

by MacDonald, Diane

Understanding unspoken customer needs is a 10 on the Richter scale of customer satisfaction. How can we understand the unspoken needs of customers, when customers themselves are unaware?...


A Service Framework

by Tyagi, Rajesh; Piccotti, Jen

To help service quality professionals negotiate the unique challenges they encounter, the ASQ Service Quality Division envisaged the Service Quality Body of Knowledge as an umbrella framework....


Making Contact

by Metz, Brian

For an organization to be able to truly understand how well it’s meeting customer expectations, more concrete, measureable metrics must be used....


Open Access

Hearing Aids

by Brandt, D. Randall

Today, hundreds of organizations regularly conduct surveys and focus groups, solicit comments and complaints, scour social media and gather data from other sources....


Pick Your Spots

by Sherman, Peter J.

In the rush to achieve results, lean Six Sigma programs can get derailed because projects are pushed through the organization, leading to the selection of the wrong projects and suboptimizing the entire enterprise’s goals....


Innovation Imperative: A Question of Balance

by Merrill, Peter

Many people say that mentioning standards and innovation in the same breath is a contradiction in terms. Evidence from the real world says otherwise....


Blaze Your Own Trail

by Hutchings, Richard

We used to put our careers into the hands of our organizations. If we worked diligently enough, they might reward our efforts with a series of promotions. This template for career advancement was a clean 45-degree line....


Open Access

Back to Basics: Smart Charting

by Sherman, Peter J.

Control charts are at the foundation of Six Sigma. They serve as the primary tool to filter out the probable noise (inherent variation or common cause) from the potential signals (nonrandom variation or special cause)....


The Audit Answer

by Estrada, Angel; Sinn, John W.

Graduate students at Bowling Green State University studied the Quality Systems Educational Collaboration, a program that addresses workforce and technical assistance needs for organizations, and disclosed areas for improvement using Six Sigma methods....


Quality for Tomorrow

by Merrill, Peter

The work of the quality profession has evolved over the years from quality control to quality assurance to quality management. But what is the next stage of evolution from quality management?...


Open Access

Up and Away

by Owens, Tracy; Fritz, Caroline

Do you want to quickly test your creativity? Take a sheet of paper and draw a big circle on it. Draw a dot on the paper. This exercise is part of a test given to children entering kindergarten to find out their baseline levels of creativity....


Expert Answers: May 2012

by QP Staff

Defining quality ... Consolidating certifications ......


Statistics Roundtable: Going on Feel

by Snee, Ronald D.; Hoerl, Roger W.

Customers consider consistent quality to be one of the most important product and service attributes. Often, it’s the most important....


Open Access

One Size Fits All

by Krzykowski, Brett; Hankel, Amanda

There’s a reason why simple tools endure: They work, regardless of the situation. That’s a characteristic shared by the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence....


Standards Outlook: Revised Thinking

by Liebesman, Sandford

COSO developed the internal control integrated framework in 1992 in response to the savings and loan scandals of the 1980s. COSO is now 20 years old and is due for an upgrade to incorporate changes in the financial environment....


Eradicating Inconsistency

by Udell, Mark; Buffington, Mike

When most people imagine the Orkin man, they visualize a uniformed technician driving a white truck from house to house. What’s probably not as widely known is that the technicians stop at many places other than homes....


Taking the Wheel

by Goodman, John

Customer experience has become the mantra of senior management looking to enhance revenue and margins. In fact, more companies are trying to differentiate themselves not only on product quality but also on total customer experience....


Get on Board

by El Tigani, Omer Abdel Aziz

Although it is difficult to find a universally accepted definition of what it actually means, quality management is still the dream of every organization on the planet—or at least it should be....


Quality Curriculum

by Taylor, James B.; Sinn, John W.; Lightfoot, William S.

Does quality exist as an entity independent of business? Are the business of quality and the quality of business simply two sides of the same coin? No matter—the quality discipline has become inextricably woven into business....


Open Access

The Power of Positive

by Johnston, Frank C.; Beck, Duane P.

In his 2006 book, The World is Flat, Thomas Freidman cites the many challenges globalization puts on corporate life: changing political realities, social entrepreneurship and the effects of the internet....


3.4 per Million: Know What You Want

by Carnell, Mike

Having learned Six Sigma in the 1980s now creates an interesting box to live in today. Six Sigma was a strategy to achieve the corporate vision of total customer satisfaction....


Open Access

Perspectives: Taken for Granted

by Kennedy, Bob

The ISO 9000 series is Quality 101, and as quality practitioners, we should never forget it....


Online (Taylor)

by James B. Taylor, John W. Sinn and William S. Lightfoot

Insights from developing a quality management and continuous improvement curriculum can be applied in an operations management context to teach quality principles to general management....


3.4 per Million: Inputs Into Action

by Breyfogle, Forrest W.

A year ago, I wrote about the nine-step Integrated Enterprise Excellence (IEE) business management system and how it can be used to integrate voice of the customer (VOC) sources with other improvement efforts so an entire enterprise can benefit....


Open Access

Salary Survey 2011: Slow and Steady

by Hansen, Max Christian; Wilde, Nancy J.; Kinch, Eileen R.;

A single organization’s actions may be reported several times if multiple employees of that organization responded to the survey. Director: Oversees all aspects of an organization’s quality or business improvement efforts, such as developing and administr...


Expert Answers: December 2011

by QP Staff

Survey struggles ... ISO 9001 vs. ISO 22000....


How Do You Compare?

by Gupta, Pradeep; Nandiwada, Siva

Organizations often are unable to leverage benchmarking as a process to deliver excellence in business performance. This could be due to a lack of understanding of benchmarking as a process or lack of clarity on where it could add business value....


Standards Outlook: Know Your Role

by West, John E. "Jack"

When an organization has stale quality management system processes in the face of dynamic—at times chaotic— uncertainty, the entire system may become irrelevant....


Surf's Up

by Edmund, Mark

In essence, a disconnect within the Telefónica Group was throwing off and disconnecting its customers from the internet....


Expert Answers: November 2011

by QP Staff

Proving quality's worth ... Proper control charting...


Is Six Sigma Dead?

by Weeks, J. Bruce;

There are reports from the field about the death of Six Sigma. The word is that it has been overused, has not brought its expected benefits and that newer methodologies, such as the theory of constraints and systems thinking, are replacing it....


Open Access

One Good Idea: On Purpose

by Port, Jonathan D.

When an organization has constancy of purpose with all members aligned with that purpose, productivity increases. A QMS that conforms to ISO 9001 can take advantage of requirements relating to constancy of purpose built into the standard....


Expert Answers: October 2011

by Ramu, Govind; Kubiak, T.M.

A QMS checklist ... Selecting a Six Sigma project ......


Online Tables Olson

by Olson, Diane; Sinn, John W.

Globalization, as well as demands from people, business and technology, require organizations to deliver high-quality performance to remain competitive. Quality methods can allow alignment with rapidly changing and increasing customer expectations....


Open Access

Online Figures One Good Idea

by Port, Jonathan D.

Planning Execution Hierarchy Aim Quality manual Procedures Work instructions Forms Records Quality management system documentation pyramid / Online Figure 1 Transforming the document pyramid / Online Figure 2 Aim Quality manual Procedures Work instructio...


Online Tables Standards Outlook

by Liebesman, Sandford

Developed the following business process measures: 4 � documented results of management review meetings 5 � Customer satisfaction measures 5 � Measurable objectives used in product or service improvement 1 � balanced scorecard ( please indicate measures ...


Supporting Role

by Stimson, William A.

The ANSI/ISO/ASQ Q9000 Series of Quality Management Standards consists of three component standards. Taken together, the standards are components because they form a complete tactical approach to quality management....


Reaching Out

by Blumenthal, Cynthia

In his Pulitzer Prize-winning novel Middlesex, Jeffery Eugenides describes life at Ford Motor Co. in the 1920s, detailing how unskilled workers tried to match the calculated pace of assembly lines and a manufacturer that made almost every part itself....


Open Access

Career Corner: Wowing the Boss

by ReVelle, Jack B.

No matter the organization, type of job or department size—everyone has a boss. Even if you have your own company, there's always someone to whom you are responsible and to whom you report. CEOs and board chairmen all report to their boards of directors....


Statistics Roundtable: Complaint Department

by Hare, Lynne B.

PERHAPS YOU KNOW what goes on in most corporate complaint departments. Given euphemistic names such as “consumer affairs” and “consumer response,” their business is still the same....


Open Access

Back to Basics: Bringing Beauty Back

by Bader, Bruce

Little Rapids is a disposable health and beauty aids manufacturer that sells to distributors and consumers. In early 2009, it received a frantic message from one of its largest customers, who said there were several problems with their orders and that...


Standards Outlook: Hand in Hand

by Cressionnie, L.L. "Buddy"

Beginning July 1, all aviation, space and defense (AS&D) quality management system (QMS) certification body audits were required to be conducted according to a newly released AS&D QMS standard....


Open Access

Reversing Course?

by Seibert, Jerry H.; and Schiemann, William A.

THE OUTSOURCING OF FUNCTIONS once performed by organizations’ internal departments has been increasing in quantity and scope....


Expert Answers: July 2011

by QP Staff

Calibration labs adjust ... Making your measurement system fit....


Statistics Roundtable: Proper Blending

by Snee, Ronald D.; Hoerl, Roger W.

Since we proposed the idea and theory behind statistical engineering, we’re often asked: “Is it just another term for traditional applied statistics?” That’s a legitimate question....


Open Access

Career Corner: Polish Up on Quality Lessons

by Conklin, Joseph D.

Quality is a rewarding career. Yet, occasionally, after a particularly intense day battling a crisis, a momentary break from quality seems attractive. Sometimes I leave quality behind for a little while only to run into it someplace else....


3.4 per Million: Sum it Up

by Conklin, Joseph D.

The future of the quality profession is a perennially popular topic of conversation whenever my colleagues gather at the water cooler, the monthly section meeting or the annual ASQ conference....


Online Figures 3.4 per Million

by Conklin, Joseph D.

January- year 1 $ 126,164 95% 7% 0.18 0.50% 84% 0.11 February $ 130,096 95% 6% 0.10 0.50% 74% 0.16 March $ 127,458 96% 10% 0.12 0.40% 93% 0.18 april $ 131,163 96% 11% 0.08 0.60% 77% 0.11 May $ 128,204 96% 2% 0.11 0.70% 60% 0.16 June $ 128,856 96% 7% 0.01...


Climb to the Top

by QP Staff

Who said it’s lonely at the top? For only the second time since the Baldrige program began in 1988, seven organizations were recognized last year with the nation’s highest presidential honor for performance excellence—the Baldrige Award....


No Surprises

by Boveington, Kurt

When it comes to supplier control, having the right information at the right time is key to making a sound decision....


Standards Outlook: Spring Into Action

by West, John E. "Jack"

In a lot of organizations, quality is relegated to the status of a long-forgotten initiative the organization “finished.” In these cases, what should a quality professional do?...


Open Access

Career Corner: The Missing Links

by Lindborg, Henry J.

The Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence presents an ideal pattern of values to which quality professionals can aspire. Tracking its development throughout close to a quarter century reveals shifts in the quality community’s thinking...


Open Access

For Starbucks, It's in the Bag

by Johnson, Louis; Burrows, Sarah

When voice-of-the-customer data showed Starbucks Coffee Co. needed to improve the packaging of its one-pound coffee product, it set out to learn the effects of process parameters on the key packaging quality characteristics....


Lessons in Loyalty

by Hayes, Bob E.

Business growth depends on improving customer loyalty behavior. Companies with higher customer loyalty usually experience faster business growth than companies with lower customer loyalty, research has shown....


Open Access

Career Corner: Call a SPADE a SPADE

by ReVelle, Jack B.

When you think about your career, what do you do? Do you just sort of mull it over and maybe write down a note or two? Or do you start by writing down what you want out of your professional life (your long-term objectives) and then consider what...


Loud and Clear

by Aquino, Glynis; Nichols, Michael D.; Houry, Karim

An company's use of metrics to drive and measure success can help it maintain a leadership position in its industry. A commitment to applying performance management tools has increased efficiencies, reduced cost and improved customer satisfaction scores....


Open Access

Refresh and Revitalize

by Kelley, Lynn

Textron would be the first to admit it was stuck in a rut. In particular, two of its business units, Avco Lycoming and E-Z-GO, were trapped in 1950s management styles. Both units had limited new product development and a less-than-engaged workforce....


Open Access

Trial and No Error

by Adrian, Nicole

For years, the Veterans Affairs Cooperative Studies Program Clinical Research Pharmacy Coordinating Center has been working its way toward earning a Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. In 1996, the center first started looking at the Baldrige...


Know More, Do More

by Chang, Nancy S.Q.; Gagliardi, Frank A.

If organizations want to take advantage of a changing landscape dotted with new opportunities, products and services, they need to make a substantial investment in educating and retaining a competent labor force....


3.4 per Million: Integrating Inputs

by Breyfogle, Forrest W. III

Obtaining voice of the customer information is always important because a business’s survival depends on a person choosing its products over a competitor’s products....


Online Figure 3.4 per Million

by Breyfogle, Forrest W. III

Voice of the customer ( VOC) Develop product Market product Sell product Produce and deliver product Invoice and collect payment Report financials Labor relations Human relations Safety and environment IT Enterprise process management Legal Finance Perce...


Expert Answers: January 2011

by QP Staff

Implementing two systems simultaneously ... Cut-off date for ISO 9001:2000 ... Tips for a more effective survey....


Expert Answers: December 2010

by QP Staff

The benefits of certification ... Knowing when to document....


Open Access

One Good Idea: TREAT Your Customers

by Sedlock, Ron

The missing piece to the quality puzzle is service quality. It is the catalyst needed to activate the quality ingredients that produce the results you want....


Open Access

Salary Survey 2010: Not Out of the Question

by Hansen, Max Christian

Every year, QP’s Salary Survey sparks countless questions for quality professionals and gets them thinking about their careers and personal development: How do I compare with others? What can I do get ahead? Are things getting better out there?...



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