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Open Access

Quality in the First Person: Saying Goodbye to Dad

by Mazur, Glenn

How one family used analytic hierarchy process to evaluate the choices and agree on the best solution for end-of-life care for a family member....


Safety in the Skies

by Odigie, Michael; Martin, Royce A.; Courbat, Michael; Sinn, John W.

Embracing the notion of continuous improvement, the aviation industry is endeavoring to redefine and fine-tune the way safety is managed....


Expert Answers: March 2014

by QP Staff

Defining the customer ... incoming inspections...


Standards Outlook: Into the Future

by Reid, R. Dan

During the past 30 years or so, there has been a lot of content in this column and in QP dealing with management system standards (MSS). Well, get ready. ISO MSSs as you know them are about to change, starting as soon as next year....


Open Access

Standards Outlook: Change Ahead

by West, John E. “Jack”; Hunt, Lorri; Cianfrani, Charles

The revision of ISO 9001:2008 brings opportunities and challenges....


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....


Expert Answers: October 2013

by QP Staff

Handling incoming inspections ... identifying special processes during an audit...


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....


Standards Outlook: Checking the Checkers

by Russell, J. P.

ISO 19011:2011—Guidelines for auditing management systems provides guidance for managing audit programs. Clause 5.6 provides guidance on improving an audit program, just as other departments in an organization are expected to continue to improve....


Open Access

Perspectives: Bank on It

by Kumiega, Andrew; Davis, Michael; Van Vliet, Ben

Automated trading, including high-frequency trading, now accounts for more than 70% of daily trading volume. Though not everyone agrees, most academic studies support the claim that automation benefits the overall functioning of society and markets....


Standards Outlook: The Missing Key

by West, John E. "Jack"

Past perceptions about conformity to ISO 9001 suggest an organization may have a good quality management system, but it can still produce junk. But ISO 9001 does provide reasonable assurance that the output of the system will meet customer needs....


Open Access

Balancing Act

by Montgomery, Eda Ross; Neway, Justin

With common quality methods and standards in place, manufacturing organizations share a daunting challenge: an increased volume of electronic and paper-based data collected during process development and manufacturing....


Standards Outlook: Confidence Game

by Gordon, Dale K.

For the second time in my 55 years on this Earth, we are seeing a crisis of confidence. This stems from many factors, including the devastating recession of 2008 to 2009 and the slow and painful global economic recovery we are witnessing....


Standards Outlook: Keeping Watch

by Russell, J.P.

Supply chain management is important to ensure organizations can compete in the global market. Organizations continue to focus on core competencies, resulting in greater dependence on high-quality materials and services from suppliers....


Standards Outlook: Corrective Action Challenge

by Reid, R. Dan

The purpose of corrective action is to prevent the recurrence of the problem. There are usually many actions that can be taken to address the problem, ranging from incremental changes to innovative solutions....


Why Certify?

by Laman, Scott A.; Korkuch, Dana; Kohler, Rene; Drobnick, Rudy; Kramer, Robin; Gardner, Pete; DiPuppo, Janet G.; Krothapalli, Sowmya;

These stories are told by people at different stages of their careers. One of the things they have in common, however, is they’ve carefully considered the costs and benefits of ASQ certification....


Standards Outlook: Get in Front of the Problem

by West, John E. "Jack"

Considering the unfortunate fact that product recalls and their disastrous results seem relatively common, it’s curious why so many organizations resist formal efforts to address preventive action....


Measure for Measure: First Step Toward Disaster

by Grachanen, Christopher L.

Users who take it upon themselves to forego calibration without adequately evaluating the impact of their decision within a specific measurement application increase the likelihood of making a bad measurement-based decision....


Standards Outlook: Keep It Clean

by Schnoll, Les

Unfortunately, many organizations fail to adequately assess their overall facility environment, forget or are unaware of the need to ensure their buildings are clean and well-organized, and meet organizational and regulatory requirements....


Expert Answers: October 2012

by QP Staff

Finding the right role ... Audit mismatches ... Accuracy in calibration...


Open Access

Back to Basics: Good to Great

by Al-Sabbali, Wail A.

Quality systems audits provide a great opportunity for an organization to reinforce its strengths and minimize its weaknesses. Throughout the process, auditors play the major role in maximizing the value of the audit....


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....


Volviendo a los Fundamentos: De lo Bueno a lo Mejor

by Al-Sabbali, Wail A.

Las auditorías de sistemas de calidad ofrecen una magnífica oportunidad a la organización para reforzar sus puntos fuertes y minimizar sus debilidades....


Expert Answers: July 2012

by QP Staff

Reigniting quality ... Going nuclear...


In the Spotlight

by Keathley, Jane

Based on what we know about the skills needed for innovation management, what quality management functions, responsibilities and skills can be applied to manage innovation?...


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?...


Valuable Resource

by Zimmerman, Andrea

Talent development is addressed in three key components of sustainability management systems: international standards, social responsibility (SR) reporting and performance excellence frameworks....


Open Access

Standards Outlook: What's Old Is New Again

by West, John E. "Jack"; Hunt, Lorri; Croft, Nigel H.; Jarvis, Alka

The time appears to have finally come to start another major revision of ISO 9001. But before moving forward, it’s a good idea to look back at where we’ve been....


Standards Outlook: Complex Relationship

by Schnoll, Les

In addition to being required to master a multitude of global requirements, regulatory professionals must address other issues that impede their ability to function expeditiously....


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....


Standards Outlook: Clearly Defined

by Russell, J.P.

It seems that everyone knows the difference between a system and a process. We know processes and systems are related, but most of us aren’t sure when one begins and the other ends....


Standards Outlook: Know Your Future

by Reid, R. Dan

The future is a subject of great interest to quality practitioners. So let’s look for initiatives that may be right around the corner. Armed with the right information, you should be able to get a head start on the competition....


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....


Standards Outlook: How Will You Manage

by Schnoll, Les

While the required skill sets of quality and regulatory professionals constantly change, and capability upgrades must be ongoing to ensure success, it was hard to predict that branching out into project management would be the next hurdle....


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....


Expert Answers: August 2011

by QP Staff

Connecting SOPs and IT ... quality assurance vs. quality control ... looking for remote audits....


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

Getting on Track

by Bowers, Dorothy P.; West, John E. “Jack”

ISO 26000 is here. Are you ready? Maybe the better question is: Do you care? You should. ISO 26000 Guidance on Social Responsibility has been touted as the new standard that can help manage social responsibility issues at your organization....


Open Access

Getting on Track/Por el Buen Camino

by Bowers, Dorothy P.; West, John E. “Jack”

ISO 26000 is here. Are you ready? Maybe the better question is: Do you care? You should. ISO 26000 Guidance on Social Responsibility has been touted as the new standard that can help manage social responsibility issues at your organization....


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?...


Standards Outlook: Revisionist History

by Liebesman, Sandford

The latest version of ISO 9001 was published in December 2008. Since then, ISO/TC 176 has created a task group to consider concepts for inclusion in the next revision, which is scheduled for publication in 2015....


Expert Answers: March 2011

by QP Staff

Explaining rework verification ... Getting management involved ... Measurement confusion....


Salary Survey 2010: Part 1, Section 4: Salary by ASQ and RABQSA International Certification

by Hansen, Max Christian

For four straight years, the number of survey respondents not holding any ASQ certifications has fallen. This year, 59.1% of respondents reported that they have one or more ASQ certifications, and 24.9% said they hold two or more certifications....


Salary Survey 2010: The Complete Report

by QP Staff

experience by gender / FIGURE 2 More than 20 years 10.1- 20 years 6.1- 10 years 3.1- 6 years $ 6,000 Male Years of experience in quality profession Years of experience in quality profession Female $ 4,000 $ 2,000 0 $ 2,000 $ 4,000 $ 6,000 1- 3 years Less...


Quality in the First Person: A Different Perspective

by Seoane, Amalia Yoguez

My journey in quality began 1996, when I was studying industrial engineering at Mexico City’s Autonomous Metropolitan University. I was attracted to this field because a friend’s father had a small voltmeter assembly factory, and to sell its products...


Open Access

Online Sidebars: Keeping Current: October 2010

by QP Staff

In addition, BS 5750 and Z2999, similar series of quality assurance standards, were published in the U.K. and Canada and the quality management system (QMS) standard ANSI-ASQ Z1.15 was published in the United States. Eventually, the ISO 9000 series had bo...


Past Is Prologue

by van Kemenade, Everard

Although it’s tempting to look ahead, it’s wise to look back and learn from the past. This axiom holds true for quality management, which is why the history of the discipline is worth closer examination....


Open Access

Two in One

by Razzetti, Eugene “Gene” A.

The terms risk analysis, risk assessment and risk management—often used interchangeably—can mean a variety of different concepts and metrics. There is no one single approach to risk management....


Standard Outlook: In Transition

by Cressionnie, L.L. "Buddy"

The 30-month transition period for the aviation, space and defense (AS&D) quality management system (QMS) standard began Jan. 1. With plenty of time to get familiar with the QMS documents, organizations are striving to meet their requirements....


Expert Answers: June 2010

by QP Staff

Changing industries ... Organizing your quality department....


Standards Outlook: Prevent Defense

by West, John E. "Jack"

Effective preventive action requires focus and attention, both of which can be addressed via a method that starts with prioritization and ends with improvement actions....


Standards Outlook: Taking Responsibility

by Liebesman, Sandford

Social responsibility and sustainability are issues that have gotten the attention of most countries around the world, and they're growing in importance in quality circles....


Expert Answers: February 2010

by QP Staff

Updating a scorecard ... the right metrics ... starting a quality management system....


Expert Answers: December 2009

by QP Staff

Continual vs. continuous ... Setting up a data set....


Measure for Measure: High Risk, No Reward

by Grachanen, Christopher L.

The pressure to reduce calibration costs may put inspection, measurement and test equipment (IM&TE) users at odds with a company’s ISO 9001 requirements, as well as good laboratory shop practices....


Standards Outlook: Remaining Relevant

by West, John E. "Jack"

Without changes, ISO 9001 risks becoming irrelevant on the world stage. So, what new ideas should be included in the next edition?...


Measure for Measure: Conscientious Calibrations

by Grachanen, Christopher L.; McGee, Terry L.

There are compelling reasons for an organization to get certified to a standard, but one that gets overlooked is the impact on the environment....


Standards Outlook: The Right Approach

by Liebesman, Sandford

The process approach is at the heart of a quality management system (QMS) defined by ISO 9001. And, as everyone knows, it’s necessary to have the old ticker checked out from time to time....


Critical Stage

by West, A.H. "Jack"

Has Six Sigma been a good thing? While this is a straightforward question, there isn’t a simple answer....


Open Access

Extra Credit

by Mattis, Ted; Sinn, John

Recent data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development indicate the United States ranks 12th among major industrialized countries in higher education attainment....


Open Access

Tune Up

by Allen, I. Elaine; Davenport, Thomas H.

Six Sigma has many meanings. In its simplest context, Six Sigma can be defined statistically as the attempt to achieve near-perfection by having no more than 3.4 errors per million opportunities, or being 99.997% correct (or defect-free)....


Progress Report

by He; Park; Hu; Knod; Yue

Six Sigma has been a hot topic discussed and implemented globally in the business world, nonprofit organizations and even governments. There is comparatively less research, however, into how to assess the maturity of Six Sigma implementation....


Volviendo a los Fundamentos: Grafico que habla

by Leonard, Denis

Hay muchas maneras para determinar cuan exitoso es un proceso o proyecto. Estos métodos implican habitualmente indicadores detallados y pueden incluir la reducción del tiempo de ciclo, el número de etapas del proceso y la satisfacción del cliente....


Open Access

Back to Basics: Table Talk

by Leonard, Denis

There are many ways to determine how successful a process or project is. These methods normally involve detailed metrics and may include cycle-time reduction, number of process steps and customer satisfaction. However, the more improvement projects there...


Standards Outlook: Revised AS&D Standards Take Flight

by Cressionnie, L.L. “Buddy”

The International Aerospace Quality Group has released the IAQG 9100:2009 aviation, space and defense standards in all three of its sectors....


Standards Outlook: Effective Audit Programs

by Russell, J.P.

Today's organizations need to be agile and responsive to the changing requirements in private and public business sectors. Properly directed, internal audit program resources can help an organization stay focused and uncover improvement opportunities....


Open Access

Change That Sticks

by Spackman, Leon

Process improvement is gaining more attention as organizations face budget cuts, competition from developing markets overseas and a challenging economy....


Small Change, Big Impact

by West, John E. “Jack”

Little has changed in the fourth edition of ISO 9001, which was issued late last year by the International Organization for Standardization. ISO 9001:2008 contains no new requirements, so the transition should be painless for most organizations....


Standards Outlook: Dynamic Duo

by Liebesman, Sandford

Lean and Six Sigma are two methods aimed at improving the quality of an organization’s operations and its financial results. Both concentrate on customer satisfaction and improved business performance....


Open Access

Out of Sight ... Out of Mind

by Schultz, Bill

The purpose in sharing this story is to publicize a growing gap in quality-system coverage caused by outsourcing and to share some of the challenges of fixing it. The story is true. The names have been changed to protect the innocent....


Open Access

Building From the Basics

by Rooney, James J.; Kubiak, T.M; Westcott, Russ; Reid, R. Dan; Wagoner, Keith; Pylipow, Peter E.; Plsek, Paul

Quality control is about models, methods, measuring and managing. It’s about uncovering a problem and finding the solution. It’s about using the right techniques at the right time to make things better....


Salary Survey 2008: Part 1, Section 18: Salary by RABQSA International Certification

by QP Staff

As Section 4 in the regular employee results noted, 1,263 respondents (14%) have earned RABQSA certifications. These respondents hold 22 out of the 33 RABQSA certifications listed in the salary survey....


Salary Survey 2008: The Complete Report

by QP Staff

51 Section 6 Salary by Number of Work Hours Online Section 7 Salary by Nonexempt vs. Exempt Status Online Section 8 Salary by Number of Years in Current Position Online Section 9 Salary by Number of Years in Current Position and in the Quality Field Onli...


Smooth Approach

by Morris, Jon

Traditional internal audits fulfill a need for companies with fresh ISO 9001 implementations. But for organizations with mature systems, an innovative approach called an appreciative internal quality audit can take them beyond compliance to excellence....


Open Access

What's Up?

by Sanders, Seiche

Study participants outlined the forces, four scenarios in which they might play out, and the implications to quality, organizations and the profession. Study participants were asked to envision the implications of the key forces and scenarios for quality ...


Open Access

Online Sidebars Sanders

by Sanders, Seiche

Increasing movement from quality of product to quality of management and the organization. The systems approaches the quality profession has evolved through ISO 9000 and other management system standards will be valued by organizations looking to bring qu...


Standards Outlook: What's Really Important

by West, John E. "Jack"

By the end of this year, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is expected to issue a new version of ISO 9001....


Open Access

Energize Your QMS

by Hunt, Lorri

Changes to the ISO 9001:2008 amendment are high benefit and low impact. This position stated the following: "ISO 9001:2008 has been developed to introduce clarifications to the existing requirements of ISO 9001:2000 and changes that are intended to improv...


Open Access

Futures Study

by QP Staff

Forces of Change From All ASQ Futures Studies Table 1 1996 1999 2002 2005 2008 Changing values Partnering Quality must deliver bottom- line results Globalization Globalization Globalization Learning systems Management systems will increasingly absorb the...


Standards Outlook: Down With Silos

by Liebesman, Sandford

Businesses today have multiple management systems, including financial, quality and environmental. Unfortunately, these management systems usually do not talk to one another....


Starting From Scratch

by Radziwill, Nicole; Olson, Diane; Vollmar, Andrew; Lippert, Ted; Mattis, Ted; Van Dewark, Kevin; Sinn, John W.

Graduate students studying quality developed the Quality Systems Development Roadmap to help organizations do this, using application templates from the Lean Six Sigma Quality Transformation Toolkit. However, new companies, organizations without an enterp...


Building Blocks

by Armstrong, Michael

Like many other countries around the world, Canada offers a national quality award to recognize and encourage organizations to attain outstanding levels of quality performance....


The Road to Improvement

by Baranzelli, John D.

Registration of public organizations to the ISO 9001 quality management standard can be difficult because of their complex operations and extensive documentation....


Two Are Better Than One

by Nanda, Vivek "Vic"

Management need and my personal curiosity recently led me to take a closer look at the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX). My work pointed out similarities and differences between SOX and ISO 9001....


Open Access

Customer Servicemen

by Krzykowski, Brett

Customer Feedback is a key component of improvement. The challenge has always been finding the most effective way of procuring it....


Standards Outlook: Off to a Good Start

by Russell, J.P.

Clause 6.2.6 of the U.S. supplement for the International Organization for Standardization's (ISO) auditing standard provides guidelines for establishing initial contact with the auditee....


Expert Answers: May 2008

by Sanders, Seiche

Government and cost of quality ... Understanding the slack factor....


Expert Answers: April 2008

by QP Staff

Probability of failure ... Deming's contributions....


Standards Outlook: ISO 9001 and Advantage in the Marketplace

by West, John E. "Jack"

You have completed the ISO 9001 certification audit process and received an accredited certificate of registration from the registrar. Your organization has joined the nearly one million others around the world to achieve this distinction....


Standards Outlook: How to Manage Risk in a Global Economy

by Liebesman, Sandford

The global economy has provided opportunities that didn’t exist just 10 years ago. But the flattening of the Earth via the internet and extensive outsourcing to countries such as China and Mexico have also presented organizations with many risks....


Open Access

Expert Answers: February 2008

by QP Staff

ISO standards outlines ... The benefits of kaizen blitzes....


Standards Outlook: Product vs. System Quality

by Gordon, Dale K.

We live in an era in which complex and technologically advanced products are produced on a regular basis. Little concern is given to the engineering and advanced process capabilities that are required to produce them....


Open Access

QMS Certification: Down With Disillusionment

by Gyani, Girdhar

Conformity assessment and international standards that cover products and quality and environmental management systems provide mechanisms to ensure the quality of goods and services, but a recent survey reveals that the various certification bodies...


Turbocharge Your Preventive Action System

by Sittsamer, Murray J.; Oxley, Michael R.; O’Hara, William

A layered process audit (LPA) is an ongoing chain of simple verification checks to make sure a defined process is followed correctly. This powerful management tool can improve safety, quality and cost savings by amplifying problem solving systems and...


Standards Outlook: Output Really Does Matter

by West, John E. "Jack"

Auditing is a key component of systems that provide confidence in organizations’ competence, ability and honesty in meeting requirements. For decades we have been using audits for this purpose...


ASQ Team Says QMS and EMS Standards Support SOX

by Liebesman, Sandford

The intent of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) was to make the financial system of control more transparent and to reduce the incidence of corporate fraud. It soon became evident, however, that compliance with the law’s auditing requirements would be...


Six Sigma and Baldrige: A Quality Alliance

by Mellat-Parast, Mahour; Jones, Erick C.; Adams, Stephanie G.

The Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award has evolved from a way to recognize the best quality management practices to a comprehensive framework for world-class performance....


3.4 per Million: Use DMAIC to Make Improvement Part of the Way We Work

by Snee, Ronald D.

Faster, better, cheaper. That’s what organizations across almost all major industries must now do to remain competitive....


Open Access

Army Aviation Depot Does an About Face

by Giddens, Jamey

A few years ago the Corpus Christi Army Depot (CCAD), which provides maintenance, repair, and overhaul of the Air Force Pave Hawk helicopter, was in danger of losing the contract because of problems with turnaround time and cost overruns. CCAD’s...



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