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Necessary Measures

by Johnson, Louis; Deaner, Maureen;

Learn the difference between standard and expanded gage repeatability and reproducibility (R&R) studies and how expanded gage R&R helps clarify measurement system variation....


Open Access

Quality in the First Person: Return to Roots

by Glover, Mike

Exposed to the manufacturing industry at a young age, the author reflects on career exploration and his eventual role in quality at his family's business....


Expert Answers: June 2014

by QP Staff

Driving service quality ... Evaluating equipment...


Solid Base

by Ahmed, Afaq;

A petroleum and petrochemical plant consists of equipment such as pumps, valves, motors, flanges, pipes, turbines, tanks and pressure vessels. Typically, such plants rely on a global supplier base to procure such equipment....


Need for Speed

by Spencer, Karen; Helfer, Steve

Organizations must focus on key indicators and achieve optimal performance levels. They must define quality as it relates to customers and modify quality to achieve and sustain quality levels that maximize supply chain performance and quality management....


Open Access

No Weak Links

by Bailey, Bill D.; Alter, Howard

A global telecommunications organization decided to use the lean tool value stream mapping, along with the eight rights and seven supply chain wastes to better understand its complete supply chain and to help avoid suboptimization....


Expert Answers: May 2014

by QP Staff

Starting a career in quality ... Testing traceability...


Standards Outlook: Consulting Quandaries

by Schnoll, Les

As a consultant, you sometimes must walk the fine line of being (appropriately) assertive and going too far, thus alienating your difficult clients. You must learn to deal with occasional idiosyncratic behaviors—thus, the consultant’s quandary....


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....


Statistics Roundtable: The Quality Practitioner’s Friend

by Borror, Connie M.

On Aug. 28, 2013, the quality and statistics communities lost one of their biggest champions: Lloyd S. Nelson. Nelson was an honorary member of ASQ, the founding editor of the Journal of Quality Technology and wrote the Technical Aids column for JQT....


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....


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....


Speaking in Code

by Kaiser, Randy

Manufacturers spend time and money creating products for market, yet all of that hard work can be wasted if coding errors affect product quality....


Expert Answers: April 2014

by QP Staff

Coordinate measuring machine profile capability ......


At Your Fingertips

by Cartia, Robert A.

Troubleshooting is defined as a form of problem solving most often applied to the repair of failed products or processes. It is a logical, systematic search for the source of a problem so it can be solved and so the product or process can operate again....


Open Access

Will to Live

by Csikos, Brian

How one quality professional confronted a life-threatening diagnosis....


Statistics Roundtable: Unraveling Bayes’ Theorem

by Anderson-Cook, Christine M.

Many of us have a love-hate relationship with conditional probabilities. Yet they are a function of our daily lives. We update our knowledge with new information, and what we believe evolves as new information gets integrated into our thought processes....


Expert Answers: March 2014

by QP Staff

Defining the customer ... incoming inspections...


Open Access

Quality in the First Person: The 'Write' Fit

by Wrestler, Denise

Writing and the ability to effectively communicate are foundational skills of good quality engineers....


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

Learning From Experience

by Behling, David

Seven thought leaders offer their take on lean’s impact, opportunities and challenges....


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....


Open Access

A Pathway for Patients

by Dean, Mark L.

The clear success of lean in other sectors has stimulated its adoption in healthcare. Reaping its benefits are a growing number of progressive healthcare organizations, including the Mayo Clinic, ThedaCare, Jewish Hospital and Virginia Mason....


Open Access

Quality in the First Person: Super Powers

by Schmidt, Megan

In honor of National Engineers Week, QP took a closer look at what makes engineers and the profession super by asking the global engineering community to weigh in with its thoughts....


Hoist Help

by Chadha, Rajeev

Overall equipment effectiveness and waterfall analysis are proven continuous improvement analysis tools that have been used in the manufacturing world for many years....


Innovation Imperative: The New Revolution

by Merrill, Peter

3-D printing is one of the most exciting new technologies since the transistor of the last century, and since the steam engine two centuries before that....


Open Access

One Good Idea: Bucket List

by Suedbeck, John G.

Categorize and control your risk management audit data....


Expert Answers: January 2014

by QP Staff

Selecting KPIs ... Controlling multiple processes...


Open Access

Career Corner: Switch Gears

by Westcott, Russell

Beat job boredom and burnout with reinvention....


Expert Answers: December 2013

by Wagoner, Keith; Pylipow, Peter E.

Measuring customer experience ... SPC for low-volume assembly....


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%....


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

Salary Survey 2013: Read Their Minds

by Hansen, Max Christian

The quality profession is helping the world economy pull out of its long slump. And the professionals who responded to this year’s QP Salary Survey seem to be experiencing their own recovery—be it ever so slight....


Open Access

Perspectives: Be a Trendsetter

by Kraft, Debra

Quality professionals should consider expanding their networking efforts into the business realm. Why? Our organizations expect us not only to eliminate the costs of poor quality, but also help optimize profitability....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 2, Section 23. Base Earnings by Education and Training

by Hansen, Max Christian

The independent consultants who respond to QP’s Salary Survey are, of course, a smaller group than the regular employees. This year in the United States, 62 consultants reported working part-time and 109 full-time....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 20. Size of Raise and Additional Annual Payments

by Hansen, Max Christian

In 2009, the percentage of North American quality professionals not expecting a raise in salary hit an all-time high of 38%. That number has dropped since then, although the dropping stalled in 2012....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 19. Salary by Gender and Age

by Hansen, Max Christian

In the United States, 68.4% of the full-time workers who participated in the QP Salary Survey are men. With an average salary of $91,070, they earn an average of $9,158 more than their female counterparts....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 18. Salary by Exemplar Global Certification

by Hansen, Max Christian

Worldwide, 14.2% of the surveyed quality professionals have at least one Exemplar Global certification. Canadian and U.S. respondents held 49 of the 72 certifications listed as choices in the salary survey, which are divided into two tables....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 17. Salary by Highest Level of Ed. and Yrs. of Exp. in Quality

by Hansen, Max Christian

Year after year, the QP Salary Survey shows that education pays off in higher salaries for quality professionals. The two most advanced degrees, the master’s degree and doctorate, seem to pay especially large dividends....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 16. Salary by Highest Level of Education

by Hansen, Max Christian

Year after year, the QP Salary Survey shows that education pays off in higher salaries for quality professionals. The two most advanced degrees, the master’s degree and doctorate, seem to pay especially large dividends....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 15. Salary by Extent of Quality Responsibilities

by Hansen, Max Christian

In QP’s quality survey, respondents are asked: “In your company, how many people do you think have quality responsibilities stated in their job descriptions?” In 2009, a majority noted a figure of 25% or less....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 14. Salary by Organization Quality Infrastructure

by Hansen, Max Christian

If you work in a quality department, there’s a good chance you work in one whose size has been stable for a while. For several years, between 35% and 44% of respondents reported that their department had stayed the same size during the past year....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 13. Salary by Geographic Location

by Hansen, Max Christian

Of the quality professionals who participated in this year’s salary survey, the vast majority live in North America. Only 0.85% of the respondents work outside of the United States, Canada and Mexico (Table 1)....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 12. Salary by Industry

by Hansen, Max Christian

Year after year, respondents from North America are more likely to work in the manufacturing sector than the service sector. But, also perennially, the workers in service industries bring home, on average, bigger paychecks....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 11. Salary by Division Size, Org. Size and Location of HQs

by Hansen, Max Christian

For quality professionals, it pays to work in a larger organization. And, within the larger organizations, it seems that the larger the division you work in, the larger your paycheck....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 10. Salary by Number of Employees Overseen

by Hansen, Max Christian

In the United States and Canada, the majority of survey respondents oversee the work of other employees. Asked whether they supervise others, 36.2% of U.S. respondents declined to answer, and this section will deal only with those who did answer....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 9. Salary by No. of Yrs. in Crnt Position and in Quality Field

by Hansen, Max Christian

Section 8 shows that quality professionals don’t seem to be strongly rewarded for staying in one position for a long time. Table 1 of this section shows that respondents don’t tend to stay in one position for too long....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 8. Salary by Number of Years in Current Position

by Hansen, Max Christian

Each year, QP salary survey looks at respondents’ salaries by their tenure in their current position. And each year, one data point of interest is how many professional are new to their positions that year....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 7. Salary by Nonexempt vs. Exempt Status

by Hansen, Max Christian

Quality professionals who are paid for overtime earn less than those who are exempt from such pay. In the US, the 85.6% of respondents who said they’re exempt from receiving overtime earn an average of $31,438 more than the respondents who are nonexempt....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 5. Salary by Six Sigma Training

by Hansen, Max Christian

Year after, QP’s salary survey shows that it pays to get Six Sigma training. As Figure 1 shows, U.S. respondents who’ve completed any level of Six Sigma training earned $16,826 more on average than those without any Six Sigma training....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 6. Salary by Number of Work Hours

by Hansen, Max Christian

If you’re from the United States, it’s likely you work a lot of hours. Each year, QP’s salary survey shows that more than 40% of U.S. respondents work on average more than 45 hours per week....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 4. Salary by ASQ and Exemplar Global Certification

by Hansen, Max Christian

In North America, 58.2% of respondents to QP’s salary survey held at least one ASQ certification. As Table 1 shows, the two certifications held by most respondents are certified quality auditor (23.9% of respondents) and certified quality engineer (22%)....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 3. Salary by Number of Years of Experience in the Quality Field

by Hansen, Max Christian

Over the 27 years QP has been conducting its salary survey, results have consistently shown that quality professionals are rewarded for their years in the profession....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 2. Salary by U.S. Regions and Canadian Provinces

by Hansen, Max Christian

Average salaries of quality professionals vary widely by state or province. In the United States, the highest-paying region provides salaries 9.2% higher than the national average, while the lowest-paying region comes in at 9.3% below that average....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 1, Section 1. Salary by Job Title

by Hansen, Max Christian

Of those who responded to this year’s salary survey, the vast majority are employees of a single organization, and of these, most work full time. Part 1 of this report, consisting of sections 1-19, address these respondents....


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

Quality in the First Person: Career Traveler

by Hermenitt, Chris

Determination helps machine operator soar to the top....


Show of Hands

by Liu, Shu

“How many think this process is capable of meeting the specification?” Students sitting in a basic quality class in Asia were asked this question while they looked at a long-term normal process variation curve well within the specification range....


Open Access

One Good Idea: Mind Your Metrics

by Hartmann, Thomas

Add customer value to your overall equipment effectiveness formula....


Innovation Imperative: Changing Tides

by Merrill, Peter

We are currently in a perfect storm for global change. The global marketplace is changing and advances with technology are dramatically changing the way we complete even the simplest tasks. We are responding to change by innovating....


Expert Answers: November 2013

by Laman, Scott A.

Sampling plans for reliability testing...


Open Access

Perspectives: Action Required

by Veenstra, Cindy P.; Walters, Glenn

IN ITS EFFORT to advance ideas, research and practice in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education and workforce, ASQ’s Education Division co-sponsored the third annual Advancing the STEM Agenda Conference earlier this year....


Expert Answers: October 2013

by QP Staff

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


Get There Faster

by Andell, Jonathon L.

While traditional value stream maps, 5S workplace organization and spaghetti diagrams are crucial tools for the lean practitioner, they do not lend themselves readily to quantifying waste associated with transporting things throughout a facility....


Open Access

5S Shakeup

by Casey, John

There are secrets about 5S that lean experts often overlook because nobody ever clued them in. Before revealing the secrets, however, there are a few questions to answer: What is 5S? Why is 5S important to implement?...


Standards Outlook: Regulatory Nightmares

by Schnoll, Les

“Do it right the first time” is a mantra often used by quality professionals. In the associated world of regulatory affairs and compliance, this adage also represents an appropriate mindset....


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...


Ready, Set, Go

by Lawson, Edward

Organizational progress is generally driven by the identification of goals and objectives. Strategic planning, which defines goals and objectives, is a formal process in organizations, regardless of size....


Open Access

Expert Answers: September 2013

by QP Staff

Centralizing quality ... ISO 9001 cost of implementation...


Open Access

Quality in the First Person: Quality Couple

by Mouradian, George

Husband and wife use quality tools to sweeten union...


Open Access

Standard Wise

by Combs, Oscar

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


Open Access

Quality in the First Person: Broken Arrow

by ReVelle, Jack

One member’s role in preventing nuclear disaster....


Open Access

Expert Answers: August 2013

by QP Staff

Correction vs. corrective action ... Identifying and eliminating waste...


3.4 per Million: Operational Definitions

by Kubiak, T.M.

If your organization is like most when it comes to data collection or metric development, little thought is actually given to these processes. I mean, after all, how difficult can it really be?...


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....


Raising the Bar

by Bertels, Thomas; Buthmann, Arne

Many large organizations have invested in operational excellence initiatives. Some organizations are motivated by potential cost savings, while others are looking for culture change or a common language for solving problems....


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....


Reinventing Excellence

by Buckman, Jim; Buckman, Mary Beth

How Corning used quality to maintain its legacy of innovation for 160 years....


Take Charge

by Stepanovich Paul L.; Hopkins, Pamela J.

The horseshoe nail proverb is remembered for illustrating how a seemingly inconsequential issue can lead to dire consequences. In the thought experiment that follows, the nail becomes a metaphor for failures of managers to understand variation....


Statistics Roundtable: Wanderlust and Memory

by Hare, Lynne B.

Pop quiz. Question one: How do you derive Shewhart (X-bar and R, or X-bar and S) control chart limits?...


Open Access

Back to Basics: Light Bulb Moment

by Force, Scott

NEWLY CERTIFIED Six Sigma Black Belts often struggle with understanding how the various quality tools work together. It took me a few projects before I began to see linkage. As I teach and mentor new Belts, I use an analogy that hits close to home....


Open Access

Quality in the First Person: It's a Process

by Jennings, John

I have been a Type 2 diabetic for 40 years—about as long as I’ve been in the quality field. Currently, there is no cure for diabetes. But it can be managed....


The Power of Prediction

by Kruger, Gregory A.

Inconsistent supplier delivery can negatively impact an organization’s ability to serve its customers. Using quality and statistical methods can help predict demand and minimize the impact of supplier inconsistency....


What Makes You Tick?

by Machado, H.F. Ken

Uncoordinated internal operations create organizational inefficiencies, a lower level of customer service and unnecessary delays in management decisions, resulting in increased costs....


Avoiding an Avalanche

by Milliken, Greg

Organizations that make products with rigorous quality requirements face numerous challenges associated with meeting objectives—ranging from complying with standards to operating in highly-regulated and frequently audited environments....


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....


Open Access

One Good Idea: Act the Fool

by Levinson, William

Almost every workplace has a few heyokas and they are vital to the organization’s survival....


Statistics Roundtable: One Size Does Not Fit All

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

The need to improve is ever present in all endeavors and will continue to be so. We live in a dynamic world. As predicted in the second law of thermodynamic and entropy, the world will continue to change....


Heart of the Matter

by Aba, Eli Kofi; Hayden, Michael A.

The goal of most processes in the manufacturing and service industries is to produce products or services that exhibit little to no variation. Variation is defined as “where no two items or services are exactly the same.”...


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?...


Statistics Roundtable: Getting Graphical

by Borror, Connie M., White, T. Kevin

A company has six manufacturing processes critical to its business success. Management recently required each area manager to provide quarterly reports on the performance of their particular process....


Expert Answers: April 2013

by QP Staff

Root cause analysis tools ... Calibration data for a fee ......


Open Access

Apples to Oranges?

by Surak, John G.;

Consumers around the world demand safe food. Through the years, retailers and food companies have pushed their suppliers to have food safety systems and improve on them. The drive started with suppliers being required to have third-party good GMP audits....


Before the Fact

by Mehta, Bob

The FDA has ratcheted up its surveillance and inspection activities on the suppliers of food and dietary supplements. Growing concern over protection of America’s food chain has been voiced by the FDA’s commissioner of food and drugs....


Open Access

Career Corner: Out of Hiding

by ReVelle, Jack B.

While I was the senior statistician for a manufacturing division of a major aerospace firm, I shared the concept of the hidden factory with a statistical quality control (SQC) training class composed entirely of senior and middle management....


Open Access

The Right Ingredients

by Zaidi, Syed Wasi Asghar;

In Out of the Crisis, W. Edwards Deming writes, “Everyone doing his best is not the answer. It is first necessary that people know what to do.” To ensure people know exactly what to do, all activities within the organization should be system oriented....


Open Access

Quality in the First Person: Show and Tell

by Weeden, Marcia M.

I have a confession to make. One of the most frustrating things I have encountered during the course of my quality career is trying to explain what I do for a living to people who have no idea what quality is or what it does....


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....


3.4 per Million: Box Paradox

by Carnell, Mike

Without any data to support this, I’m willing to wager that anyone who has been employed in a manufacturing or transactional environment for five years has either been directed to or heard someone direct others to “think outside the box.”...


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....



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