QUALITY TOOLS

Outline

Quality tools

1. Introduction

2. Definition of quality tools (ASQ) as tools that help businesses to identify causes and understand processes, collect and analyze data to be used in making informed choices

3. There are seven basic quality tools: cause and effect, control charts, check sheets, histogram, Pareto chart, scatter diagram and stratification.

4. This essay focuses mainly on cause and effect, check sheet and stratification.

5. Cause and effect is used to identify many possible causes of a problem and many other ideas, which will be classified into useful categories.

6. Cause and effect makes it easy to identify problems even before they occur.

7. Check sheet is another basic quality tool according to ASQ. A check sheet is a structured form used to collect and analyze real time data.

8. Check sheets are more reliable as it gives patterns of real time problems; hence, it is easy to come up with ways of handling those problems.

9. Stratification is a quality tool that is often used in combination with other data analysis tools

10. In stratification, sources of data are classified into different categories to identify the different patterns in data, which are useful to the organization.

11. Despite the many quality tools at their disposal, organizations fail to use them because they lack good leadership skills and strategic planning skills.

Draft

With the changes in the advancing business society, the need for quality is on the rise too. However, implementing quality can be quite difficult in the ever-changing environment. Therefore, business managers have to makes (replace with make) themselves aware of different quality tools and techniques. American Society of Quality (ASQ) defines quality tools, “as tools that can help businesses to identifiy (spelling) causes, understand processes, collect and analyze data, generate ideas, keep projects on track, and make informed decisions” (ASQ, 2014). This essay will expand on three quality tools, and their relevance to organizations (remove , after tools).

            Quality tools operate on the priemise (spelling) that the success of a business depends on its ability to use a wide range of information to plan, implement and control different tasks. Quality tools are not only about analyzing information, but they also refer to management techniques that are needed in today’s evolving environment (Westcott, 2014).

            Cause and effect diagram is one quality tool that is often used by many organizations. Cause and effect diagram is also known as the fishbone chart/ ishikawa (Starts with a capital letter Ishikawa), and it identifies many possible causes of a problem, and many other ideas, which will be classified into useful categories, (punctuation) Kaoru Ishikawa discovered this tool in 1968, and since then it has been used widely to show effects of events (insert citation). In most organizations, this tool is useds (spelling) during product design to identify problem areas in a product, its effects, and different ways of solving it. Each imperfection in the product design can be seen as a source of variation. Different causes of imperfection can include processes, people, or the machines, and they will be put into different categories to identify the exact sources of variation.

            When using cause and effect diagram one has to start from the problem statement (effect), and draw a box around it that will be filled with the major categories that could have caused the problem (Tague, 2005). Cause and effect as a quality tool can be very effective, in that it brings many people together to brainstorm on the different causes of a situation and to identify different ways on how the situation can be dealt with. With cause and effect, it is easy to identify problems even when they have not occurred.

            Check sheet is another basic (replace with primary) quality tool according to ASQ. A check sheet is a structured form used to collect and analyze data. With check sheets, data can repeatedly be observed as it collects real time (replace with real-time) data and keeps the people in charge of making certain decisions on the loop. With the advances in technology, check sheets do not have to be a simple tally, but they can be complex structures that gather various kinds of information for the organization.

When using a check sheet, one has to decide on the specific problem that will be observed. The next step is to figure out how and for how long data will be collected, before developing the form of the check sheet. When a problem occurs within the duration of data collection, it will be noted down. A check sheet is a significant quality (spelling) tool as it is about recording problems as they occur and how they occur. Unlike, other quality tools that brainstorm about a problem this tool is more effective as it records the problem as it occurs. This tool is more credible when it comes making quality decisions, as it makes managers aware of problem patterns hence it will be easy to identify ways of breaking those exact patterns.

            Lastly, stratification is a quality tool that is often used in combination with other data analysis tools. In stratification, sources of data are classified into different categories to identify the different (replace with various) patterns in data (Tague, 2005). Sub populations within the overall populations often vary, and when each sub population is tested differently, the study will be more effective as it will put into considerations (consideration) the differences. This quality tool is used before data collection especially when the source of data displays distinct differences that are hard to ignore. When using stratification, the organization has to consider how different sources can affect the overall result. Hence, the sources should be classified based on identifiable differences. Scatter diagrams, control charts, and histograms will be used to analyze data from the different strata. Finally, data from different groups will be analyzed separately to determine their critical values.

             In conclusion, quality tools are a (remove indefinite article) vital tool (replace with instruments) for ensuring quality in a business entity. They thrive on the business’ ability to take advantage of all the resources available to it. The Ishikawa or the fishbone chart is one such tool. It works by putting information into suitable (add cause/effect) categories so that the main causes of a problem can be (add identified and) resolved. The check sheet is another tool that helps to identify issues in a system as they arise. Data is collected and monitored in real time. With advanced technology, data from complex systems is (are) easily monitored. Finally, stratification involves placing data in categories so that a break in the usual pattern is easily and promptly identified and corrected. Using these quality tools enables a company to react promptly to quality issues before they get out of hand.

Final submission

With the changes in the advancing business society, the need for quality is on the rise too. However, implementing quality can be quite difficult in the ever-changing environment. Therefore, business managers have to make themselves aware of different quality tools and techniques. American Society of Quality (ASQ) defines quality tools, “as tools that can help businesses to identify causes, understand processes, collect and analyze data, generate ideas, keep projects on track, and make informed decisions” (ASQ, 2014). This essay will expand on three quality tools and their relevance to organizations.

Quality tools operate on the premise that the success of a business depends on its ability to use a wide range of information to plan, implement and control different tasks. Quality tools are not only about analyzing information, but they also refer to management techniques that are needed in today’s evolving environment (Westcott, 2014). With the proper tools, an organization is able to meet set standards of quality and thereby acquire a sizeable market size.

Cause and effect diagram is one quality tool that is often used by many organizations. Cause and effect diagram is also known as the fishbone chart/ Ishikawa, and it identifies many possible causes of a problem, and many other ideas, which will be classified into useful categories. Kaoru Ishikawa discovered this tool in 1968, and since then it has been used widely to show effects of events (Westcott, 2014). In most organizations, this tool is used during product design to identify problem areas in a product, its effects, and different ways of solving it. Each imperfection in the product design can be seen as a source of variation. Different causes of imperfection can include processes, people, or the machines, and they will be put into different categories to identify the exact sources of variation.

When using cause and effect diagram one has to start from the problem statement (effect), and draw a box around it that will be filled with the major categories that could have caused the problem (Tague, 2005). Cause and effect as a quality tool can be very effective, in that it brings many people together to brainstorm on the different causes of a situation and to identify different ways on how the situation can be dealt with. With cause and effect, it is easy to identify problems even when they have not occurred.

Check sheet is another primary quality tool according to ASQ. A check sheet is a structured form used to collect and analyze data. With check sheets, data can repeatedly be observed as it collects real-time data and keeps the people in charge of making certain decisions on the loop. With the advances in technology, check sheets do not have to be a simple tally, but they can be complex structures that gather various kinds of information for the organization (Tague, 2005).

When using a check sheet, one has to decide on the specific problem that will be observed. The next step is to figure out how and for how long data will be collected, before developing the form of the check sheet. When a problem occurs within the duration of data collection, it will be noted down. A check sheet is a significant quality tool as it is about recording problems as they occur and how they occur. Unlike, other quality tools that brainstorm about a problem this tool is more effective as it records the problem as it occurs. This tool is more credible when it comes making quality decisions, as it makes managers aware of problem patterns hence it will be easy to identify ways of breaking those exact patterns.

Lastly, stratification is a quality tool that is often used in combination with other data analysis tools. In stratification, sources of data are classified into different categories to identify the various patterns in data (Tague, 2005). Sub populations within the overall populations often vary, and when each sub population is tested differently, the study will be more effective as it will put into consideration the differences. This quality tool is used before data collection especially when the source of data displays distinct differences that are hard to ignore. When using stratification, the organization has to consider how different sources can affect the overall result. Hence, the sources should be classified based on identifiable differences. Scatter diagrams, control charts, and histograms will be used to analyze data from the different strata. Finally, data from different groups will be analyzed separately to determine their critical values.

In conclusion, quality tools are vital instruments for ensuring quality in a business entity. They thrive on the business’ ability to take advantage of all the resources available to it. The Ishikawa or the fishbone chart is one such tool. It works by putting information into suitable cause/effect categories so that the main causes of a problem can be identified and resolved. The check sheet is another tool that helps to identify issues in a system as they arise. Data is collected and monitored in real time. With advanced technology, data from complex systems are easily monitored. Finally, stratification involves placing data in categories so that a break in the usual pattern is easily and promptly identified and corrected. Using these quality tools enables a company to react promptly to quality issues before they get out of hand.

References

Mears, P. (1995). Quality improvement tools & techniques. McGraw-Hill

Tague, N. (2005). Quality Toolbox. 2nd Edition, ASQ Quality Press  

Westcott, R. (2014). The Certified Manager of Quality: organizational excellence handbook.         Fourth Edition, American Society of Quality

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