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Open Access

Clues About Culture

by Hankel, Amanda

When it comes to building a culture of quality, each organization must develop its own approach. It can be helpful, however, to learn what other organizations around the world are doing and to see how your organization compares....

Open Access

The Ripple Effect

by Schmidt, Megan

The 2013 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award recipients said their use of the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence was their catalyst for achieving strategic goals and higher levels of quality....

Insurance Policy

by Minckler, William

Using a quality-centric approach, the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services in 2012 embarked on an initiative to create an enterprise content management system to manage, safeguard and accelerate the use of key informational assets....

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?...

Open Access

One Good Idea: Bucket List

by Suedbeck, John G.

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

Expert Answers: December 2013

by Wagoner, Keith; Pylipow, Peter E.

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

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

Career Corner: Know Your Worth

by Christopher, Rosemarie

Successful professionals know what they want and how to get it....

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....

Open Access

Career Corner: The Dilbert Syndrome

by Lindborg, Henry

Ways managers can cure survey cynicism among employees....

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....

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....

Full View

by Richardson, Robb

As quality professionals, we are comfortable in discussing both the health of a process and how to improve it using the tools of our trade. Yet, when it comes to applying those same approaches to our own performances, many of us are far less comfortable....

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....

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

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.”...

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....

Statistics Roundtable: Group Effort

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

Cluster analysis is being widely used in disciplines as diverse as marketing, genomics and climate change. The technique lends itself to large data sets and small, focused data sets....

Open Access

Career Corner: In Shape for Quality

by Conklin, Joseph D.

I first met A.H. when my personal growth shifted to a more horizontal direction. He has since gone solo, working as a self-employed personal trainer. When I learned he had gone solo, I wondered if his perspective on managing for quality had changed....

Salary Survey 2012: Part 1, Section 8: Salary by Number of Years in Current Position

by Hansen, Max Christian

com 50 SponSored by Salary by time in current position for U. S. respondents / Figure 2 Salary by time in current position for Canadian respondents / Figure 3 93,287 87,271 90,357 84,833 85,039 85,433 0 $ 20,000 $ 40,000 $ 60,000 $ 80,000 $ 100,000 More ...

Innovation Imperative: Open to Suggestions

by Merrill, Peter

Open market innovation intrigues people because it appears to run counter to accepted business practices. It discounts secrecy, recognizes we lack knowledge in our own organizations and depends on ideas from outside for success....

Expert Answers: November 2012

by QP Staff

Surveys in the toolbox ... Auditing it all ... Reference materials in ISO 17025 ......

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....

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....

Open Access

One Good Idea: Survey Fatigue

by Pecoraro, Joel

Who among us has not suffered the endless assault of satisfaction surveys? Society is surveyed out, but that doesn't mean the pursuit of meaningful customer feedback is a waste of time. It's just that the challenge is getting more difficult....

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....

Follow the Signs

by Palmer, Brien

Many change models have been proposed, but one stands out: the transtheoretical model, also known as the health behavior change model. The model originates from directly observing how people really did or didn’t change in response to urgent medical needs....

Open Access

Career Corner: Turn, Turn, Turn

by Conklin, Joseph D.

In the quality world, I have seen my share of heated conversation about why (fill in the quality technique of your choice) works or doesn’t. The passion usually does not run as deeply as on a soap opera, but it comes close on occasion....

On the Right Course

by Nejati, Mehran; Ghasemi, Sasan

In today's competitive business environment, organizations do not always limit their concerns to those of shareholders and customers....

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....

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....

Rethinking Design

by Gattiker, Thomas

Design thinking offers several tools and concepts that can complement problem-solving approaches normally taught and used by quality professionals....

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....

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...

Open Access

Salary Survey 2011: Land the Big One

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

Certification holders—or those thinking about obtaining certifications—should know that these assets make them more attractive to potential employers. In most cases, a certification offers the most value when it is held by a professional whose job duties ...

Salary Survey 2011: Part 1, Section 12: Salary by Industry

by Hansen, Max Christian

Nonelectronic measuring, analyzing and controlling instruments ( NAICS code 339): Balances, blood testing apparatus, Bunsen burners, centrifuges, distilling apparatus, laboratory incubators, SPonSoreD by Salary by industrial classification / Table 1 Unit...

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....

Open Access

Site Seeing

by Yu, Louis W.; Urkin, Esther; Lum, Steve; Kenett, Ron S.; Ben-Jacob, Ron

Assessing exposure to risk events and initiating proactive risk mitigation actions must be a priority of organizations worldwide. Fortunately, there’s a conceptual and methodical approach to conducting a risk-based quality audit....

Open Access

One Good Idea: Dancing Around Innovation

by Niles, Kim

Being innovative, or using applied creativity, is difficult when you fail to recognize it as a process and approach innovation opportunities as an artisan....

Get in Touch With Your Emotions

by Liu, Shu

Emotional intelligence is one of the key traits shared by organizations that succeed in a dynamic world characterized by innovative technology, a diversified workforce, easy access to information and economic globalization....

Survey Says

by Wise, Thomas P.

To make software quality assurance less taxing, one organization used online survey tools as a creative means of addressing and resolving the difficulties inherent in performing process review data collection with limited resources....

Not Your Normal SOP

by Brewton, Oliver; Culbreth, Tim; Groeger, Hans

To ensure business activities are performed correctly and consistently, it is vital to be compliant to numerous quality, safety and regulatory requirements. One way to do so is to understand and develop thorough procedures—and then follow them....

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....

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...

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

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....

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....

Standards Outlook: Remote Control

by Russell, J.P.

When you start talking about remote auditing—or e-audits—around a group of auditors, you will hear plenty of strong opinions. Some auditors are vehemently opposed, while others are open to the idea....

Open Access

Career Corner: Seeing Through the Smoke

by Conklin, Joseph D.

This question risks giving away my age, but it’s for a higher cause: When you hear the phrase “smoke gets in your eyes,” what is the first thing that comes to mind? If it’s not the Platters, the doo-wop group, and if you aspire to the management ranks...

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....

Open Access

Salary Survey 2010: Revealing Answers

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

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 to get ahead? Are things getting better out there?...

Salary Survey 2010: Part 1, Section 15: Salary by Extent of Quality Responsibilities

by Hansen, Max Christian

Salary by extent of quality duties for Canadian respondents / FIGURe 2 72,989 76,885 87,446 95,225 38,921 $ 0 $ 40,000 $ 80,000 75.1% to 100% of duties are quality related ( 66.2%) 50.1% to 75% of duties are quality related ( 14%) 25.1% to 50% of duties ...

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?...

Salary Survey 2010: Part 1, Section 3: Salary by Number of Years of Experience in the Quality Field

by Hansen, Max Christian

Through the years, QP’s salary surveys have consistently shown that quality professionals are rewarded for their years in the field. In fact, experience by itself accounts for some of the salary premium paid to the highest earners....

Salary Survey 2010: Part 1, Section 5: Salary by Six Sigma Training

by Hansen, Max Christian

During the past few years, the dollar value of Six Sigma training has held up well. So, too, has an interesting difference in the relative values of the training levels. In 2008, QP published a bar chart similar to Figure 1....

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...

Open Access

Tip of the Iceberg

by Ellifson, Valerie

HEALTHCARE PROVIDERS KNOW it’s not enough to treat a patients’ conditions and send them on their way. Often, the patient’s condition and symptoms are simply the tip of the iceberg. Many other factors—including human behaviors and societal conditions...

Open Access

Get Your Ducks in a Row

by Orthaber, John

The ISO 9001 quality management system has been around since 1987, and it is generally acknowledged that the system produces some fairly significant benefits, including improved profitability, higher sales and better employee morale....

Online Sidebar 2: How much will it cost?

by Orthaber, John

Almost all the costs of implementing ISO 9001fall into one of the following categories: Registration costs: Registrars are free to set their own rates, which are generally predicated on a daily rate per person, plus expenses....

Online Sidebar 1: What makes the ISO 9001 QMS work?

by Orthaber, John

In addition to the marketing advantages, which everyone seems to understand, there are a number of different aspects to the ISO 9001 quality management system (QMS) that contribute to its success. Of these, three tend to stand out....

Open Access

Jersey Score

by Krzykowski, Brett

For most, it takes years to reach a point at which an organization can expect to be seriously considered for the Baldrige award. But that didn’t deter New Jersey-based healthcare provider AtlantiCare, one of five award recipients for 2009....

Expert Answers: September 2010

by QP Staff

Soft-dollar savings ... crisis management's effect on quality....

Open Access

Sustainable Future

by Scriabina, Natalia; Cort, Gary

The new international standard ISO 9004:2009—managing for the sustained success of an organization—a quality management approach, brings quality management to a new area of sustained success. The standard adds a new term, sustained success...

Statistics Roundtable: Imputation Explanation

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

The United States recently completed its 23rd federal census of population. The first census was mandated by the U.S. Constitution and carried out under Thomas Jefferson in 1790....

On the Mark

by Adrian, Nicole

It’s really no wonder that an organization that subscribes to the vision “To be the best-run business in American for the benefit of its customers” received a 2009 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. MidwayUSA, a 2008 Missouri Quality...

Open Access


by Murphy, William H.

All companies want to build a stronger brand by ensuring customer satisfaction. Along the way, of course, the companies want to make a profit....

Standards Outlook: Better Together

by Russell, J.P.

Even if everything is done appropriately during an audit, following up on the findings is just as important because it gives meaning to the audit....

High Marks

by Esqueda, Paul; D'Allegro, Mary Lou

The public is demanding more accountability of many private organizations, corporations and institutions of higher education. In response, the Department of Education instituted changes to the process of accreditation of higher education institutions....

Open Access

Where to Start

by Hayes, Bob E.; Goodden, Randall; Atkinson, Ron; Murdock, Frank; Smith, Don

Companies are viewing the Toyota situation as a cautionary tale rife with lessons that can benefit all organizations. To help drive those lessons home, QP recruited five quality experts, each of whom broke down one aspect of the fallout....

Open Access

Safe Landing

by Jeppsen, Bryan

Paramount to improving customer service is better understanding what the customer deems to be important and implementing the changes. To meet that challenge, JetBlue Airways used text analytics software....

In It for the Long Haul

by Edmund, Mark

When organizations experience rapid growth, the most important part of the business—the customer—can sometimes get lost in the shuffle....

Acquiring Assets

by Kirscht, Ron

Manufacturers face a growing threat to quality and productivity. The coming wave of baby boomer retirements, alongwith a projected decline in the number of new recruits, poses the threat of a gap in skilled workers that are critical to success....

Open Access

Salary Survey 2009: Holding Steady

by Conklin, Joseph D.

QP’s salary survey is interesting in good times, and even more so in lean times. My observations for the 2009 version fall into three categories: profiles of success, limits of the survey and questions readers might ask to reflect on career development....

Salary Survey 2009: Part 1, Section 6: Salary by Number of Work Hours

by QP Staff

As seen in past salary surveys, this year’s survey shows that relatively few quality professionals in the United States work a traditional workweek. Only 15.1% indicated they work 36 to 40 hours a week....

Salary Survey 2009: Part 1, Section 14: Salary by Organization’s Quality Infrastructure

by QP Staff

More than 80% of the surveyed quality professionals are members of their organizations’ quality departments—and those departments have gotten smaller for many in the last 12 months....

Salary Survey 2009: The Complete Report

by QP Staff

52 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...

Open Access

PDSA Leads to Top Accolades

by Adrian, Nicole

Force field analysis. Two-way communication. SWOT analysis. These terms are likely familiar to quality professionals in the manufacturing, service and possibly even healthcare fields. But to those in education? It’s unlikely....

Open Access

Career Corner: Out of Quality, Out of Business

by Kulisek, Diane

Being lean used to be associated with poverty and starvation. Today, being lean refers to profitability and fitness, especially in business. Cutting corporate fat, or non-essentials, has become as important for organizational health as slimming down is...

Expert Answers: August 2009

by QP Staff

Deciding on a survey strategy ... Gauging the maturity of your quality management system....

New Frontiers

by Kenett, Ron; Salini, Silvia

Self-declared or interview-based surveys are a prime research tool in many application areas, such as risk management, customer satisfaction tracking and social science research....

Open Access

Don't Just Talk the Talk

by Adrian, Nicole

Many companies and organizations talk big about knowing the best way other businesses and groups can work to drive continuous and process improvement. Often, these businesses don’t take their own advice. Once in a while, however, a group comes along...

Open Access

Human Touch

by Nelson, John; Lemarquis, Jean-Paul

“No job is so important, nor service so urgent, that we cannot take the time to perform our work safely.” Those familiar with the old Bell System will remember this safety creed. It helped guide many decisions in potentially dangerous situations....

Expert Answers: February 2009

by QP Staff

Executives hear money talk ... Customer feedback: What works best?...

The Power of Balance

by Su, Qiang; Shi, Jing-hua; Lai, Sheng-jie

Many organizations face tremendous challenges in calculating trade-off relationships and the point of balance when determining their cost of quality. Experts don’t always agree, compounding the difficulty....

Expert Answers: January 2009

by QP Staff

Indirect measures of customer satisfaction and dissatisfaction can include the number of referrals and recommendations made by customers, market share, sales, repeat sales and customer retention. Some companies can make use of customer satisfaction data p...

Open Access

Salary Survey 2008: Seeing Green

by Allen, I. Elaine

Significant salary discrepancies exist among quality professionals depending on where they work, their gender and whether they supervise others, according to an analysis of QP’s 2007 and 2008 salary surveys. Part 1, section 1 leads off the salary survey p...

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...

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

Small Business, Big Feat

by Adrian, Nicole

Efforts to continuously improve employee and customer satisfaction, and business practices led PRO-TEC to a Baldrige award. The company has incorporated many best management practices, including lean manufacturing and continuous improvement, and relied on...

Open Access

The True Test of Loyalty

by Hayes, Bob

The customer loyalty field has experienced much technological innovation, such as automated reporting portals and integration of attitudinal and behavioral data in customer relationship management applications, over the past decade....

Who's Keeping Score?

by Neenan, Rebecca

There’s one tool you won’t find for sale at Sears. One of the retail giant’s divisions has started using a quality management tool extensively to maintain and improve its own quality management system....

Online Coral Springs

by Krzykowski, Brett

The City.s Performance Improvement System / ONLINE FIgurE 1 Strategic level Strategic planning process Environmental scan ( including customer requirements analysis and operational results) Business plan, key intended outcomes, business plan initiatives,...

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....

Open Access

Back to Basics: A Call for Improvement

by Coifman, Harry

It’s a common perception that customer phone support is a resource-draining operation. This misconception results in many call center cost reduction projects but few process improvement initiatives. Basic tools can be used to improve a call center....

Better Safe Than Sorry

by Goodden, Randall L.

Last year’s record number of product recalls, especially recalls of children’s toys, drew worldwide attention to product safety and defective products. The recall stories topped newscasts and made headlines in newspapers coast to coast....

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