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The Seven New Management and Planning Tools

Quality Glossary Definition: New management planning tools

New management planning tools are defined as the method(s) for achieving expected outcomes that previously have not been used.

In 1976, the Union of Japanese Scientists and Engineers (JUSE) saw the need for tools to promote innovation, communicate information, and successfully plan major projects. A team researched and developed these seven new quality control tools, often called the seven management and planning tools, or simply the seven management tools:

Affinity diagram: Organizes a large number of ideas into their natural relationships.

Interrelationship diagram: Shows cause-and-effect relationships and helps analyze the natural links between different aspects of a complex situation.

Tree diagram: Breaks down broad categories into finer and finer levels of detail, helping to move step-by-step thinking from generalities to specifics.

Matrix diagram: Shows the relationship between two, three, or four groups of information and can give information about the relationship, such as its strength, the roles played by various individuals, or measurements.

Matrix data analysis: A complex mathematical technique for analyzing matrices, often replaced by the similar prioritization matrix. A prioritization matrix is an L-shaped matrix that uses pairwise comparisons of a list of options to a set of criteria in order to choose the best option(s).

Arrow diagram: Shows the required order of tasks in a project or process, the best schedule for the entire project, and potential scheduling and resource problems and their solutions.

Process decision program chart: Systematically identifies what might go wrong in a plan under development.

Adapted from The Quality Toolbox, ASQ Quality Press.

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