Quality Management : Problem Solving

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....

Statistics Roundtable: Thinking of Linking

by Anderson-Cook, Christine

Results that come from statistical studies often hold the key to answering important business questions that can influence future choices made in a project....

Creative by Design

by Parendo, Perry

Although many people don’t consider its structured approach as enhancing creativity, it’s important to acknowledge DoE as an unexpected and valuable source of creativity. DoE is 50% more efficient than alternative test methods if you use a half-fraction d...

Change in Flow

by Patel, Raj C.

“The customer deserves to receive exactly what we have promised to produce,” Philip B. Crosby wrote in his classic work, Quality is Free. But how do organizations ensure this happens?...

Open Access

Quality in the First Person: Saying Goodbye to Dad

by Mazur, Glenn

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

Open Access

One Good Idea: Probable Cause

by Broccoletti, Moreno

An approach that standardizes the unwritten rules that make root cause analysis effective is proposed in this column....

Expert Answers: February 2013

by QP Staff

Root cause analysis...

In the Crosshairs

by Lindquist, Russell

In 2005, Fairbanks Morse Engine discovered that work content analysis can help clearly define product families and can align improvement activities in a leveraged execution....

Expert Answers: September 2012

by QP Staff

Sustaining excellence ... Blood bank error...

Open Access

Volviendo a Fundamentos: Cambiando el 'Quien' en el 'Como'

by Thomas, Kenneth

Según Rodger Talbert en su artículo, "The Blame Game (El juego de la culpa)," "La gente puede llegar a estar tan preocupada en asignar a un culpable que pierde de vista la resolución a los problemas. Para determinar cómo resolver los problemas, primero te...

Open Access

Back to Basics: Turning 'Who' Into 'How'

by Thomas, Kenneth

When things go wrong, the goal should be to move away from trying to determine “who” was at fault and quickly transition into a problem-solving mindset of “how” to make things better....

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....

Standards Outlook: Spring Into Action

by West, John E. "Jack"

In a lot of organizations, quality is relegated to the status of a long-forgotten initiative the organization “finished.” In these cases, what should a quality professional do?...

Don't Leave Learning to Chance

by Howard, John C.

Whether in a college statistics course or a refresher session in a statistical quality control course, it is important for students to understand probability distributions. Fortunately, a simple in-class exercise can achieve that end....

Standards Outlook: Righting the Wrongs

by Schnoll, Les

Most organizations do not have a clue when it comes to root cause determination, and their inability to meet the requirement can be disastrous from regulatory and business perspectives....

No-Hanging Fruit

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

I first met the “no-hanging fruit” problem back in the day when ultrasonic impulse meters (like some quality problems now) were as big as a bread box—or bigger....

Expert Answers: November 2009

by QP Staff

The TOPS way of getting to the root cause ... Repair vs. rework...

Quality in the First Person: Call to Order

by Smith, R. Dale

In summer 2001, I was working as a quality engineering manager in New Hampshire. While living there, I became involved in local government—much to the chagrin of my patient wife. Among other positions, I was serving as a member of the town’s budget...

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