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3.4 per Million: Before Breakdown

by Conklin, Joseph D.;

My friend Ken and I go back more than 30 years. We met at Acme Reengineering. Acme was the main parts supplier to the local automotive engine rebuilding industry....


Open Access

Best of Back to Basics: Use Your Head

by Echeverria, Luis

Put what you learned during certification prep to work. Plan up front how you will use the knowledge you gained. Try applying the knowledge acquired during the study period....


Open Access

Best of Back to Basics: Clearing SPC Hurdles

by Laman, Scott

Statistical process control (SPC) has provided significant cost savings for companies that are fortunate enough to implement it fully. However, implementation challenges can overcome the best of intentions....


Open Access

Best of Back to Basics: Substantiation Test

by Mitchell, Joseph Paul

Hypothesis testing is one of many Six Sigma tools used for process improvement. Recently, it was part of a manufacturer's define, measure, analyze, improve and control investigation concerning a suspected variance of mechanical properties in steel tubing....


Open Access

Best of Back to Basics: Sample Wise

by Niles, Kim

Selecting the correct sample size is often the most difficult aspect of any project. Rules of thumb are important because they promote discussion that facilitates the selection of a more optimum sample size....


Open Access

Best of Back to Basics: 1+1 = Zero Defects

by Hermenitt, Chris

Control plans, in conjunction with process failure mode and effects analysis, can be used to prevent problems and save organizations money by identifying prevention controls and ensuring their successful implementation....


Open Access

Perspectives: Beyond the Carrot and Stick

by Kaushik, Sunil

I have been a part of many quality projects and worked with several cross-cultural teams. If I were asked about which was the best work environment, I wouldn’t hesitate to reply, the “results-only work environment (ROWE).”...


Open Access

Salary Survey 2015: A Winning Hand?

by Hansen, Max Christian;

This year's QP Salary Survey results are in, and salaries are up. For the largest group of respondents—full-time employees in the United States—the average salary experienced its largest increase since 2007 (Table 1)....


Salary Survey 2015: Part 1, Section 18: Salary by Exemplar Global Certification

by Hansen, Max Christian

Most popular Exemplar Global certifications in U. S. and Canada / TABLE 1 CertificationHolders in U. S. Holders in Canada Internal auditor 377 46 QMS lead auditor 324 41 QMS auditor 141 29 AS9100 auditor 122 7 IPC QMS lead auditor 64 10 Environmental sys...


Salary Survey 2015: Part 1, Section 12: Salary by Industry

by Hansen, Max Christian

Other products 10.4 87,057 8.4 87,597 Paper and related products 1 84,455 1.5 64,150 Primary metals 1 83,530 0.3 120,000 Rubber and plastic products 3.3 76,060 4.3 83,120 Toys, sporting goods, pens, jewelry and miscellaneous products 0.3 96,886 0.3 73,00...


Open Access

Salary Survey 2015: Introduction. Reading This Report

by Hansen, Max Christian

Since last year’s QP Salary Survey, the global economy has seen some improvement. Perhaps that jolted quality professionals’ interest in the job market, giving them more reason to fill out the annual questionnaire....


Salary Survey 2015: Part 1, Section 4: Salary by ASQ and Exemplar Global Certification

by Hansen, Max Christian

Percentage of respondents holding ASQ certifications / TABLE 1 2009 2011 2013 2015 Certified quality auditor 24.9% 24.1% 23.9% 23.9% Certified quality engineer 22.6 22.8 22 20.7 Certified manager of quality/ organizational excellence 12.8 13.7 12.7 12.8 ...


Salary Survey 2015: Part 2, Section 23: Base Earnings by Education and Training

by Hansen, Max Christian

1 60,000 60,000 Bachelor.s degree 32,000 959,000 144,811 47 162,097 128,580 Master.s degree 48,000 500,000 97,361 54 162,583 137,500 Doctorate 68,887 150,000 35,544 4 104,972 100,500 No response 25,000 160,000 76,540 3 71,667 30,000 Highest level of Six ...


Salary Survey 2015: Part 3, Section 29: Other International Results

by Hansen, Max Christian

Salary by job title for international respondents / FIGURE 1 0 $ 50,000 $ 100,000 $ 150,000 Average salary Job title ( percentage of respondents) 12,825 21,542 22,168 29,349 33,317 33,382 33,604 34,263 35,659 39,955 45,344 47,083 49,973 52,552 56,334 58,...


3.4 per Million: Shock Absorbers

by Snee, Ronald D.

Consumers misuse—and even abuse—products. Driving a car is a good example. The auto industry has responded by making changes to autos—reducing and sometimes eliminating the effects of these sources of variation in driver actions....


Much-Needed Structure

by Anderson-Cook, Christine M.; Lu, Lu

At the heart of Six Sigma is an approach to structured problem solving. DMAIC leads users through steps to determine the right scope for their problem, select the correct metrics to characterize the process to be improved and understand its performance....


Open Access

Back to Basics: Substantiation Test

by Mitchell, Joseph Paul

Hypothesis testing is one of many Six Sigma tools used for process improvement. Recently, it was part of a manufacturer's define, measure, analyze, improve and control investigation concerning a suspected variance of mechanical properties in steel tubing....


Open Access

Open to Change

by Reid, R. Dan

ISO 9001, the international consensus standard for quality management systems (QMS), has long been the core supplier of QMS requirements for several large sectors, including automotive, aerospace and medical devices....


Open Access

Continuing Education and Development Directory

by QP Staff

So if you.re feeling stuck, stagnant or dispirited, look into amping up your smarts with some of the best training, education and certification opportunities available today. Not only will you be helping to ensure your employability, you.ll increase you...


Open Access

Back to Basics: 1+1 = Zero Defects

by Hermenitt, Chris

Control plans, in conjunction with process failure mode and effects analysis, can be used to prevent problems and save organizations money by identifying prevention controls and ensuring their successful implementation....


Open Access

ASQ's 2015 Software Showcase and Directory

by QP Staff

QP 2015 Software Showcase and Directory The right quality software solution can open up countless possibilities to leverage your data, solve complex problems or just help your organization operate more efficiently. com InfinityQS is the global authority...


Small Changes, Big Results

by Harris, Chris; Audimoolam, Niran; Gudgel, Stephen A.

For a hitter in baseball, transitioning from one who relies on the big home run to win games to one who slaps out singles and doubles can be difficult. The same holds true for lean enterprise implementers....


Open Access

Process Primer

by Mendelssohn, Alan

Almost everything we do in life—personal and professional—involves a process. When we do it over and over, we have a repeatable process....


On Top of Your Game

by Wawrzyniak, Linda

Have you ever been up close to watch the world’s greatest skiers race down a mountain or one of the top golfers on the 18th green at the Masters Golf Tournament? Maybe you’ve sat in the front row at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as cars stream by?...


Open Access

Better Together

by Schonberger, Richard J.

Four decades ago, process improvement was in the doldrums. A global bright spot was Japan, which contributed an impressive menu of original, borrowed, and adapted concepts and practices. One set of practices has gone by evolving labels....


Being Smart About Parts

by Stevens, Nathaniel T.; Steiner, Stefan H.; MacKay, R. Jock

It was lunchtime, I was hungry, and so, of course, the phone rang. “Hey, it’s John from the foundry. How are you? We haven’t talked in a while.” John is a process engineer in a casting and machining plant that is a supplier to automotive OEMs....


Open Access

Perspectives: Well Rounded

by Barsalou, Matthew

The term “Renaissance man” is used to describe somebody “who has acquired profound knowledge or proficiency in more than one field.”...


Open Access

Total Quality's Leader

by Watson, Gregory H.

Remembering Armand V. Feigenbaum, integrator of quality into organizational management...


Open Access

One Good Idea: Concerning the CUSUM

by Shper, Vladimir

It is well known that the cumulative sum technique is one of the most widely used for data analysis. The technique is usually recommended for monitoring the changes in process characteristics....


Expert Answers: January 2015

by Laman, Scott A.; Reid, R. Dan

Understanding control charts ... ISO 9001:2015 and the automotive industry...


Salary Survey 2014: Part 1, Section 4. Salary by ASQ and Exemplar Global Certification

by Hansen, Max Christian

In the United States and Canada, more than 20% of respondents to the QP Salary Survey said they hold ASQ’s certified quality auditor certification. Nearly as popular is the certified quality engineer certification, held by 19.2% of respondents....


Salary Survey 2014: Part 1, Section 18. Salary by Exemplar Global Certification

by Hansen, Max Christian

Worldwide, 19.6% of the surveyed quality professionals have at least one Exemplar Global certification. This is up from last year’s tally of 14.2%. Canadian and U.S. respondents held 62 of the 72 certifications listed in the salary survey....


Salary Survey 2014: Part 2, Section 23. Base Earnings by Education and Training

by Hansen, Max Christian

The self-employed consultants who respond to the QP Salary Survey are, of course, a smaller group than the full-time regular workers. This year in the United States, 44 consultants reported working part-time, and there were 66 full-time consultants....


Open Access

Back to Basics: Use Your Head

by Echeverria, Luis

Put what you learned during certification prep to work. Plan up front how you will use the knowledge you gained. Try applying the knowledge acquired during the study period....


Defining Your Role

by Russell, J.P.

With titles such as quality engineer, technician, auditor, quality manager, supply quality engineer, Black Belt and software quality engineer, quality professionals’ roles within organizations are generally invisible to those on the outside....


Getting It Right the First Time

by Vashisht, Sagar; Kumar, Krishan; Gaba, Narender

A tier-one automotive shock absorber supplier faced dwindling productivity because of a high rework rate. It applied Shainin methods, including component search and paired comparison, to identify the cause, reduce rework and save money....


Open Access

Step It Up

by Grigg, Alfred; Hirt, Michael; Laman, Scott A.; Marmon, Jerry; and McShane Vaughn, Mary

SITTING IS THE new smoking. The more you sit and stagnate, some doctors say, the poorer the outlook is on your health and even life expectancy—regardless of how fit you think you are....


Open Access

Standards Outlook: Missing in Action

by Dunmire, Thea

Many of those reviewing the current draft of the revisions to ISO 9001—Quality management systems—Requirements, and ISO 14001—Environmental management systems—Requirements, are asking, “Where have all the documents gone?”...


Measure for Measure: Measuring Proficiency

by Shah, Dilip

While proficiency is indirectly a result of the employees’ skills, training and other factors, proficiency testing assesses an individual laboratory’s measurement performance against the industry measurement performance....


Which FMEA Mistakes Are You Making?

by Carlson, Carl S.

Focusing on achieving quality objectives and using an FMEA audit process will greatly enhance the FMEA effectiveness....


First Things First

by Arendall, C. Steven; Tiger, Andrew A.; Westbrook, Kevin W.;

Quality management literature has devoted considerable effort to the task of understanding and measuring process capability. Process capability is defined as the best distribution a process can produce given its present design at a given point in time....


Innovation Imperative: Making Choices

by Merrill, Peter

When you think about how to steer your career, it’s important not to steer too hard. Life presents many opportunities, and if you are trying to force your way through, you will miss the opportunities that come your way....


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....


Plan of Attack

by Machado, H.F.

Every important business project has a logical starting set of conditions, followed by a set of events that lead to a logical completion of defined objectives....


Open Access

One Good Idea: Mix It Up

by Barsalou, Matthew

Combine exploratory data analysis and strong inference to generate and verify hypotheses....


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: January 2014

by QP Staff

Selecting KPIs ... Controlling multiple processes...


Expert Answers: December 2013

by Wagoner, Keith; Pylipow, Peter E.

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


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 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 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%)....


Open Access

Words to Work By

by QP Staff

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


Expert Answers: November 2013

by Laman, Scott A.

Sampling plans for reliability testing...


Reinventing Excellence

by Buckman, Jim; Buckman, Mary Beth

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


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....


Parts of the Process

by Aguirre-Torres, Victor; López-Alvarez, Maria Teresa

Repeatability and reproducibility studies are based on the concept of variance components estimation. This is a remarkable achievement of statistical science because people usually think in terms of means and trends, not variation around a mean....


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....


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....


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....


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....


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....


Open Access

Know the Why

by Ramsay, Owen

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


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....


Salary Survey 2012: Part 1, Section 4: Salary by ASQ and RABQSA International Certification

by Hansen, Max Christian

Percentage of respondents holding aSQ certifications / Table 1 2012 2010 2008 Certified quality auditor 22.9% 24.1% 24.2% Certified quality engineer 20.4 23.7 21.6 Certified manager of quality/ organizational excellence 12.6 13.7 12.6 Certified Six Sigma...


Salary Survey 2012: Part 1, Section 18: Salary by RABQSA International Certification

by Hansen, Max Christian

Part 1. Regular Employee Results Section 18. Salary by RABQSA International Certification Details on RABQSA Certifications Salary by RABQSA certifications for U. S. respondents / Table 1 Aged care professional APIQ auditor AS9100 aerospace experience aud...


Salary Survey 2012: Part 2, Section 23: Base Earnings by Education and Training

by Hansen, Max Christian

1 28,000 28,000 Certified manager of quality/ organizational excellence 20,000 275,000 86,193 9 112,391 100,000 Certified quality auditor 12,000 180,000 56,553 17 87,066 96,521 Certified quality engineer 12,000 214,245 71,048 10 96,625 82,500 Certified q...


Expert Answers: December 2012

by QP Staff

A better supplier scorecard ... Inspecting your suppliers ......


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....


Expert Answers: August 2012

by QP Staff

Innovation issues ... SPC vs. SQC ......


Statistics Roundtable: Go With the Flow

by Hare, Lynne B.

Years ago, while on my way to conduct a statistical process control short course at a local ASQ meeting, I was stopped by a man who told me he had attended my short course the previous year and got a lot out of it....


Open Access

Perspectives: Theory of Evolution

by Gojanovic, Tony

Thumbing through W. Edward Deming’s timeless classic Out of the Crisis, it’s striking to see how the current economic crisis can be attributed to the factors he pointed out so many years ago as roadblocks to quality and productivity....


Get on Board

by El Tigani, Omer Abdel Aziz

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


Quality Curriculum

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

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


Heavy Mettle Victory

by Mazu, Michael J.; Conklin, Joseph D.

After 23 years of service, I retired from Heavymet. Heavymet is a colossus: 65,000 employees in 55 plants in six business units in six countries. I lived in interesting times there. Many asked how I felt about our progress in process management....


Lead On

by Liu, Shu; Ruegg, Stephen

In today's business environment, any organization that wishes to exceed customer expectations and stay competitive needs effective supplier management. Emotional intelligence plays an important role in dealing with suppliers....


Online Conklin: Baker’s Loaf

by Conklin, Joseph D.; Mazu, Michael J.

When recounting Plant Able’s successful struggle to implement process management, we compared it to raising children. That sums up the story when implementation is in your home plant....


Online Conklin: The Road More Traveled

by Conklin, Joseph D.; Mazu, Michael J.

After being part of a great team that implemented process management at Plant Able in the XYZ division of Heavymet, I took the show on the road to our sister facility Plant Baker....


Expert Answers: January 2012

by QP Staff

Cost-of-quality reporting ... Auditing options ......


Salary Survey 2011: Part 2, Section 23: Consultant Education and Training

by Hansen, Max Christian

Base earnings for U. S. self- employed consultants / Table 1 ( conTinueD) Minimum Maximum Standard deviation Count Average Median Part- time All consultants $ 10,000 $ 450,000 $ 82,437 87 $ 74,648 $ 54,000 Highest level of education High school diploma 6...


Open Access

Quality in the First Person: A Bad Sign

by Moeeni, Farhad

I kept my head down as I played hopscotch with the puddles on the mall parking lot. I started the engine, wiped some fog from the windows and started to back out, looking behind for cars. Suddenly—what was that?...


Salary Survey 2011: Part 1, Section 18: Salary by RABQSA International Certification

by Hansen, Max Christian

QP 161 SponSored by QP Salary Survey 2 0 1 1 Salary by raBQSa certifications for U. S. respondents / Table 1 ( conTinued) Food safety auditor Food safety lead auditor HACCP practitioner auditor HACCP practitioner associate auditor Heavy vehicle accredita...


Salary Survey 2011: Part 1, Section 4: Salary by ASQ and RABQSA International Certification

by Hansen, Max Christian

com 48 Part 1. Regular Employee Results Section 4. Salary by ASQ and RABQSA International Certification Certification Is Golden Salary by number of ASQ certifications held by U. S. respondents / Figure 1 85,015 86,165 88,821 91,114 94,463 96,041 112,586 ...


Open Access

40 New Voices of Quality

by QP Staff

When QP set out to find the individuals who will give a voice to the new generation of quality professionals, one of the hopes was that the group’s makeup would lend insight into what the future holds....


Reaching Out

by Blumenthal, Cynthia

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


Risky Business

by Singer, Donald

In highly regulated industries that manufacture pharmaceuticals, foods and cosmetics, quality control scientists have been known to perform sampling and testing to determine the acceptability of finished products. Throughout the last decade,...


Perspectives: Wake Up and Smell the Cookies

by Diepstra, G. Keith

MY RECENT TRANSITION from the automotive sector to a company in the food industry held some unusual surprises: • The overall equipment effectiveness, capabilities and yields were shockingly low in the food industry....


Statistics Roundtable: Proper Blending

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

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


Open Access

Organize How You Innovate

by Scriabina, Natalia

It is difficult to underestimate the role of innovation in the success of an organization. ISO 9004:2009 redefines the role of improvements and innovations within a quality management system....


Walking the Talk

by Krzykowski, Brett

Frequent service interruptions led Argentina-based Telefónica Group to establish a project that increased the reliability of its network and, in the process, garner gold honors at the 2010 ASQ International Team Excellence Award competition....


Results May Not Vary

by Johnson, Louis; McNeilly, Kirk

Controlling manufacturing processes so that products meet customer specifications is difficult. In such situations, factorial experimentation can be the key to understanding the impact of each process input on the process outputs....


Know Your Limits

by Henderson, Robert K.

In more than 27 years of working with a variety of manufacturing concerns, it is still surprising to observe how many manufacturing operations people possess such limited understanding of the myriad limits they adhere to each and every day....


Expert Answers: May 2011

by QP Staff

Calculating limits for three processes....


3.4 per Million: Sum it Up

by Conklin, Joseph D.

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


Perspectives: Regain Your Footing

by Weisbrod, Stu

The presence of warning signs that quality may be slipping doesn’t mean an organization is doomed. Instead, it can be redeemed with a three-step approach to reinvigorate quality....


Open Access

Leveling the Playing Field

by Wawrzyniak, Linda

I would never have guessed I had something to offer professional athletes from a quality professional’s perspective. I was proven wrong, however, after a little experiment with a simple quality tool....


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....


Quality in the First Person: A Winding Career Path

by Behr, Tim

Career paths can sometimes alter quite unexpectedly. Some people take great care in steering their career development, only to learn that factors beyond their control can have a greater influence on life....



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