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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....


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....


3.4 per Million: Knowing the Drill

by Conklin, Joseph D.

In the quest to solve quality problems, drilling down into data is a time-honored strategy that serves Six Sigma practitioners well....


Open Access

Quality in the First Person: Well Rounded

by Winney, Brice

Manage your personal and professional worlds....


Open Access

Back to Basics: Take Note

by Hart, Vicki

Tips to perfect your note-taking techniques....


Standards Outlook: Do You Really Understand?

by Russell, J.P.

The challenge for quality professionals for the next decade is to achieve a deeper understanding of our profession and its purpose....


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 ......


Open Access

Career Corner: Serve and Learn

by Lindborg, Henry J.

Board membership is a meaningful way to grow....


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....


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....


Open Access

One Good Idea: Standard of Living

by Ricker, David

Look to your life for ISO 9001 lessons....


Innovation Imperative: Innovation Toolbox

by Merrill, Peter

There is a core set of tools from which innovators can choose. Generally, innovators should select one primary tool and perhaps one secondary tool to use in each stage of the innovation process....


Open Access

Probing Probabilities

by Hooper, William

Let's do a little experiment from an article published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1978. Suppose you are tested for a rare disease that occurs in the population at about 1%. The test is 95% accurate....


Measure for Measure: Assessing Performance

by Grachanen, Christopher L.

For many calibration and testing laboratories, routine proficiency testing is a requirement for obtaining and maintaining accreditation status....


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

Back to Basics: Calculated Risk

by Sherman, Peter J.

A formula for balancing the cost of risk and uncertainty....


Measure for Measure: The Right Number

by Shah, Dilip

Taking measurements during the calibration process consumes time, and time is money. How many measurements do you need to ensure confidence in the calibration?...


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....


Open Access

Career Corner: Bounce Back

by Whitacre, Teresa

Perseverance pays off for boomer after brutal job search....


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....


Choose Wisely

by Sharma, Mohit

How to select the right metrics to ensure process improvement success....


Open Access

Volviendo a los Fundamentos: Riesgo Calculado

by Sherman, Peter J.

Equilibrar el coste del riesgo y la incertidumbre....


3.4 per Million: The ‘Initiative’ Olympic Games

by Carnell, Mike

It seems that the business world has experienced a fairly rapid transition in focus to “innovation” as the next initiative or the next big thing. Meanwhile, leadership teams wander the vast Serengeti Plain of performance improvement....


Statistics Roundtable: Listening to Sentiment

by Seaman, Julia E.; Allen, I. Elaine

What do you do if you just bought a new computer and it now makes some weird clicking sounds? Or if the airline lost your luggage, but representatives refuse to help recover it or provide compensation?...


Expert Answers: February 2014

by QP Staff

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


Open Access

Breaking Down Barriers

by Liu, Shu

To leverage the benefits and prepare for the challenges big data present, quality professionals must change their mindset, get more data, upgrade their skills and expand their roles in the big data universe....


Statistics Roundtable: Assessing Analytical Equipment Accuracy

by Hare, Lynne B.

Much ink and training time have been devoted to measurement systems analysis (MSA)—the adopted child of Six Sigma—and other statistical training programs that continue to add great value through improvements in quality and productivity....


Open Access

Fresh Perspective

by Radziwill, Nicole M.; Owens, Tracy;

The relationships among technology, innovation and quality are based on creating new value and sustaining the ability to continue creating it. Leveraging these relationships can help in releasing your creative spirit....


Back in Service

by Chakravorty, Satya S.

Machines have evolved from prehistoric tools to sophisticated 21st century devices. Man has been and always will be fascinated by machines and will continue to dream about building something that does what everyone thinks is impossible....


Open Access

Online Figures Keeping Current

by QP Staff

com 1 0% 5% 10% 15% 20% 25% 30% 35% 40% 45% 50% 55% Quality metrics are not effectively measured. 0% 5 % 10% 15% 20% 25% 30% 35% 40% 45% 55% No plans. EQMS = enterprise quality management software EQMS adoption rates / ONLINE FIGURE 2 Top quality manag...


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....


Follow the Fundamentals

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

New technology for acquiring, storing and processing data is being introduced at an ever-increasing pace. In 2012, the White House launched a national “Big Data Initiative.” According to IBM, 1.6 zettabytes of digital data are now available....


Open Access

Career Corner: Putting Pen to Paper

by Conklin, Joseph D.

Task management tips for the digitally unhip....


Open Access

Quality in the First Person: Purpose and Principle

by Vora, Manu K.

Lifelong volunteer and teacher reflects on the value of giving back....


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...


Standards Outlook: Common Ground

by Gordon, Dale K.

Accreditation by a recognized accreditation board ensures the impartiality and competence of the certification board (CB), and fosters confidence and acceptance of the CB’s certifications by end users in public and private sectors....


Open Access

2013 QP Salary Survey Webcast Powerpoint Presentation

by Hansen, Max Christian

View a PowerPoint presentation to accompany the webcast summarizing and discussing the 2013 QP Salary Survey, featuring author Max Christian Hansen....


3.4 per Million: The Best of Both Methods

by Breyfogle, Forrest W.

Many organizations have deployed both business process management and lean Six Sigma. The similarities and differences between these two methods could be illustrated using a Venn diagram, shown in Figure 1....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 2, Section 24. Earnings and Rates by Age, Gender and Geographic Location

by Hansen, Max Christian

In the United States, 109 full-time consultants responded to this year’s QP Salary Survey. Among this group, more than half are more than 56 years old and 71.9% are male, as Table 1 shows....


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

Quality in the First Person: Be the Change

by Stepniowski, Jennifer

Applying the social responsibility standard to your life....


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

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

Volviendo a los Fundamentos: Esquema Piramidal

by Weeden, Marcia

Un marco estructural para crear procedimientos normalizados de trabajo más sólidos....


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 2, Section 21. Consultants Overview

by Hansen, Max Christian

Slightly less than two-thirds of the self-employed consultants who responded to this year’s QP Salary Survey work full-time at their consulting activities....


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....


2013 Salary Survey: Part 2, Section 22. Base Earnings by Years of Experience

by Hansen, Max Christian

It seems an individual’s years of experience as a consultant are a poor predictor of individual earnings—at least that’s the picture presented by Figure 1, which shows income by consulting experience for our self-employed respondents worldwide....


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

Quality in the First Person: Career Traveler

by Hermenitt, Chris

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


Statistics Roundtable: Providing Better Insights

by Doganaksoy, Necip; Hahn, Gerald J.; and Meeker, William Q.

In an earlier Statistics Roundtable column, we advocated for the use of degradation testing (that is, monitoring change in a quality or performance characteristic) instead of time to failure....


Standards Outlook: Work in Progress

by Liebesman, Sandford

ISO 9001:2008 and ISO 14001:2004 are scheduled for major revisions by the end of 2015. Many of the revisions being considered are controversial. In this column, I will only discuss the changes to ISO 9001, but note that changes to ISO 14001 are similar....


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....


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....


Measure for Measure: Careful Comparison

by Bucher, Jay L.

Starting a calibration program from the ground floor can be a daunting task. But it also can help an organization realize it has taken only the first steps in ensuring a quality program....


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....


For the Greater Good

by Badrick, Tony; Kehrer, Sue; Reid, Elizabeth

When the Coffs Harbour Laboratory of Sullivan Nicolaides Pathology in Australia implemented an environmental management system, it realized financial savings, reduced waste and improved operational efficiencies, and saw increased staff engagement....


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

Back to Basics: Tell Me About It

by Radziwill, Nicole

Plan-do-study-act-export (PDSA-X) supports the collaborative pursuit of excellence across organizational boundaries, geography and time....


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?...


Open Access

Quality in the First Person: Get a Job

by Cote, Murray

Professor encourages students to seek certification....



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