What Is Tqm

What is TQM? Total Quality Management (TQM) is a structured system for meeting and exceeding customer needs and expectations by creating organization-wide participation in the planning and implementation of improvement (continuous and breakthrough) processes. Why TQM? In a global marketplace a major characteristic that will distinguish those organizations that are successful will be the quality of leadership, management, employees, work processes, product, and service.

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This means that products must not only meet customer and community needs for value, they must be provided in a continuously improving, timely, cost-effective, innovative, and productive manner. GOAL/QPC’s Synthesis There are a variety of strategies being used to implement quality management. These include a “guru” approach, a “quality award” approach, and an ala carte (pick a few pieces of different things and try them) approach.

From observation and direct experience with companies implementing TQM, as well as an analysis and critique of different TQM implementation strategies, GOAL/QPC constructed a TQM Wheel to provide a holistic view, and a Ten-Element Model to outline an implementation strategy that allows organizations to get started fairly quickly and begin to improve effectiveness, even though it will take several years to become fully operational. A suggested method for operational zing TQM is explained in GOAL/QPC’s 63-page Research Report (PDF, 59MB), Total Quality Management Master Plan: An Implementation Strategy.

TQM Evolves What is called TQM has never stood still. As with any dynamic management system, TQM has continuously evolved over the last half of the Twentieth Century. GOAL/QPC has been an active partner in this evolution since 1980. While numerous improvements have been made throughout the world, the elements that make up the TQM Wheel and Ten Element Model are foundational to good quality management. In today’s world, two of the most effective and popular “new” management models are Lean and Six Sigma.

Both of these models utilize the basic TQM elements and add on some extra refinements to achieve a more robust and powerful system for customer-focused product and service excellence that also focuses on optimizing costs and profits. Master Plan: TQM presents a business character of caring and competence. A TQM business recognizes that the customer’s wants and needs are the market, and therefore the only trophy worth seeking. An organization’s customers include those who buy and use the organization’s products and services, and the organization’s employees, suppliers, stockholders, and communities in which they operate.

For too many years, some public and private sector leaders and managers have considered their customers as simply the original source of their revenue and profits. If they could get them to let go of some of the contents of their wallets, they have been successful. Fortunately, the impact of that shortsighted philosophy is becoming more apparent in terms of the impact on customers — people, planet, and profits. An increasing awareness of the need to truly serve one’s customers needs to become more of an American tradition. TQM training promotes, throughout an organization, the reality of producing customer satisfaction.

From research and development through sales and service, every employee orients his or her efforts toward understanding and pleasing the customer. Customer input is sought at every level. No change is made unless it can be illustrated as a move toward increased customer satisfaction. A clear documentation of customer dissatisfaction results in a careful evaluation of business processes, followed by a decisive and deliberate modification of those processes to better meet, and then exceeds the customer’s quality requirements.

There is no aspect of customer satisfaction that isn’t part of TQM. Virtually any business improvement program is nothing more than some aspect of Total Quality Management. Vertical Alignment: What is Hoshin Planning? Hoshin Planning is a system. Originally developed in Japan, and further improved in the U. S. , Hoshin Planning enables organizations to achieve strategic breakthroughs. It is a component of the TQM system that facilitates strategic thinking and integrates the development of an implementation plan targeted to achieve a key organizational breakthrough.

Its key elements are: •A planning and implementation process that is continuously improved throughout the year (e. g. , via a Plan-Do-Check-Act [PDCA] Cycle). •Focus on key systems that need to be improved to achieve strategic objectives •Participation and coordination by all levels and departments as appropriate in the planning, development, and deployment of yearly objectives and means •Planning and execution based upon facts •Goals and action plans that cascade through the organization based upon the true capability of the organization What Are the Benefits of Hoshin Planning? Creates an established process to execute breakthrough year after year •Creates commitment to both the direction and implementation paths chosen •Increases interdepartmental cooperation •Draws upon and reinforces the Plan-Do-Check-Act Cycle (PDCA) in monthly progress reviews •Creates a planning and implementation system that is responsive, flexible, yet disciplined •Gives leadership a mechanism to understand the key problem areas in a company •Creates quicker and more accurate feedback loops •Provides a common focus throughout the organization How Does the Hoshin Planning Process Work?

Traditional management approaches accept the fact that some managers will execute well and others will not. Hoshin Planning provides methods that eliminate at least some of the natural manager-to-manager variability. In order to ensure that the execution of this process is consistent with TQM, there are two sets of tools that participants utilize: Seven Basic Quality Control Tools •Check Sheet •Pareto Chart •Run Chart •Cause & Effect Diagram •Scatter Diagram Matrix Diagram •Histogram Process •Control Chart Seven Management and Planning Tools •Affinity Diagram Interrelationship Digraph •Tree Diagram •Prioritization Matrices •Decision Program Chart (PDPC) •Activity Network Diagram Horizontal Integration: Cross-functional management is the horizontal (between teams or departments) integration of TQM activity within an organization. Some problems extend beyond the boundaries of a single work unit, while others span across an entire organization. In either case, a team that represents all points of view pertinent to a good solution, is generally the best approach to solving the problem and preventing new ones from being created.

Cross-functional management is often an attitude, one that involves a willingness to communicate and cooperate, rather than a structure or a form. Customer-supplier maps can often be used as an effective means of fostering cross-functional thinking, and “Quality Function Deployment” can be a good tool to get everyone centered around knowing the customer. Quality Function Deployment A powerful tool for getting customer feedback and understanding customer wants and requirements is “Quality Function Deployment” (QFD). QFD was first introduced to the United States in an article by Dr.

Yoji Akao in the October 1983 issue of Quality Progress, a monthly publication of the American Society for Quality (ASQ). In November 1983 the Cambridge Corporation of Tokyo, under the leadership of Masaaki Imai, conducted a Total Quality Control (TQC) and Quality Function Deployment (QFD) workshop in Chicago. Quality Function Deployment is a structured process that provides a means to identify and carry the customer’s voice through each stage of product and service development and implementation. QFD is achieved through cross-functional teams that collect, interpret, document, and prioritize customer requirements.

Through the use of charts and matrices, quality responsibilities can be effectively deployed to any needed activity within a company to ensure that appropriate quality is achieved. QFD relies on easy to understand techniques supported by analytical tools. QFD, though structured, is a flexible planning tool which allows organizations to react quickly in developing or improving products and services and which also allows for creative and innovative thinking. Unit of Optimization: Daily Management is a system that enables everyone to know what he or she has to do to make the organization run smoothly.

It includes what has to be measured and controlled to make this happen. The thrust of successful Daily Management is centered around the participation of all employees in the discovery and implementation of small, incremental, continuous improvements that they can make in their own work environment. Daily Management is an activity that can be started by an individual, work team, department, or organization. It works best when the entire organization is geared toward continuous improvement in its daily tasks. Daily Management can be viewed as the application of the PDCA Cycle to daily incremental continuous improvement.

In order to be effective at Daily Management, you must: •Know your organization’s vision and mission •Know who your customers are •Know your customers’ needs and expectations •Know your suppliers •Know how to accurately communicate your needs and expectations to your suppliers •Know thoroughly the product or service that your organization delivers to the ultimate user •Know how your job fits into the overall product or service of the organization •Know your job thoroughly •Know your process and all its trifles Know that you will be rewarded for continuous improvement activities •Know yourself—your strengths, weaknesses, and preferences Integration with Hoshin Planning a) Hoshin Planning is simply PDCA applied to the planning and execution of a few critical (strategic) organization objectives. Hoshin Planning draws information from the ongoing data collection and analysis of the Daily Management process to identify broad system problems in which breakthrough is needed. b) Once breakthroughs have occurred they can then become integrated into the focus of daily continuous improvement. ) The Hoshin Planning process often requires cooperation across functions as well as vertical alignment, which leads to the need for integration with Cross-Functional Management. Integration with Cross-Functional Management a) Daily Management activities frequently involve multiple groups and departments in an organization, and cross-functional management is what we call the systems by which functions and departments work together to achieve common organizational targets, such as quality, cost, and delivery/productivity. ) Since knowledge of the customer is essential, Quality Function Deployment (QFD) can be used as a tool, a key system, for accurately listening to, capturing, and incorporating the “voice of the customer” in the work of the organization. Finish Check Sheet Also called: defect concentration diagram Description A check sheet is a structured, prepared form for collecting and analyzing data. This is a generic tool that can be adapted for a wide variety of purposes. When to Use a Check Sheet •When data can be observed and collected repeatedly by the same person or at the same location. When collecting data on the frequency or patterns of events, problems, defects, defect location, defect causes, etc. •When collecting data from a production process. Check Sheet Procedure 1. Decide what event or problem will be observed. Develop operational definitions. 2. Decide when data will be collected and for how long. 3. Design the form. Set it up so that data can be recorded simply by making check marks or Xs or similar symbols and so that data do not have to be recopied for analysis. 4. Label all spaces on the form. 5. Test the check sheet for a short trial period to be sure it collects the appropriate data and is easy to use. . Each time the targeted event or problem occurs, record data on the check sheet. Check Sheet Example The figure below shows a check sheet used to collect data on telephone interruptions. The tick marks were added as data was collected over several weeks. Check Sheet Example Excerpted from Nancy R. Tague’s The Quality Toolbox, Second Edition, ASQ Quality Press, 2004, pages 141-142. Create a Check Sheet Track up to 10 defects on each day of the week. This tool also creates a histogram, bar chart and Pareto chart using the check-sheet data. Start using the check sheet tool (Excel-Windows, 85 KB).

Pareto Chart Also called: Pareto diagram, Pareto analysis Variations: weighted Pareto chart, comparative Pareto charts Description A Pareto chart is a bar graph. The lengths of the bars represent frequency or cost (time or money), and are arranged with longest bars on the left and the shortest to the right. In this way the chart visually depicts which situations are more significant. When to Use a Pareto Chart •When analyzing data about the frequency of problems or causes in a process. •When there are many problems or causes and you want to focus on the most significant. When analyzing broad causes by looking at their specific components. •When communicating with others about your data. Pareto Chart Procedure 1. Decide what categories you will use to group items. 2. Decide what measurement is appropriate. Common measurements are frequency, quantity, cost and time. 3. Decide what period of time the Pareto chart will cover: One work cycle? One full day? A week? 4. Collect the data, recording the category each time. (Or assemble data that already exist. ) 5. Subtotal the measurements for each category. 6.

Determine the appropriate scale for the measurements you have collected. The maximum value will be the largest subtotal from step 5. (If you will do optional steps 8 and 9 below, the maximum value will be the sum of all subtotals from step 5. ) Mark the scale on the left side of the chart. 7. Construct and label bars for each category. Place the tallest at the far left, then the next tallest to its right and so on. If there are many categories with small measurements, they can be grouped as “other. ” Steps 8 and 9 are optional but are useful for analysis and communication. 8.

Calculate the percentage for each category: the subtotal for that category divided by the total for all categories. Draw a right vertical axis and label it with percentages. Be sure the two scales match: For example, the left measurement that corresponds to one-half should be exactly opposite 50% on the right scale. 9. Calculate and draw cumulative sums: Add the subtotals for the first and second categories, and place a dot above the second bar indicating that sum. To that sum add the subtotal for the third category, and place a dot above the third bar for that new sum. Continue the process for all the bars.

Connect the dots, starting at the top of the first bar. The last dot should reach 100 percent on the right scale. Pareto Chart Examples Example #1 shows how many customer complaints were received in each of five categories. Example #2 takes the largest category, “documents,” from Example #1, breaks it down into six categories of document-related complaints, and shows cumulative values. If all complaints cause equal distress to the customer, working on eliminating document-related complaints would have the most impact, and of those, working on quality certificates should be most fruitful.

Example #1 Example #2 Excerpted from Nancy R. Tague’s The Quality Toolbox, Second Edition, ASQ Quality Press, 2004, pages 376-378. Create a Pareto Chart Analyze the occurrences of up to 10 defects. Start by entering the defects on the check sheet. This tool creates a Pareto chart using the data you enter. Start using the Pareto chart tool (Excel-Windows, 85 KB). Run Charts Run charts (often known as line graphs outside the quality management field) display process performance over time. Upward and downward trends, cycles, and large aberrations may be spotted and investigated further.

In a run chart, events, shown on the y axis, are graphed against a time period on the x axis. For example, a run chart in a hospital might plot the number of patient transfer delays against the time of day or day of the week. The results might show that there are more delays at noon than at 3 p. m. Investigating this phenomenon could unearth potential for improvement. Run charts can also be used to track improvements that have been put into place, checking to determine their success. Also, an average line can be added to a run chart to clarify movement of the data away from the average.

Alternatives with run charts: 1. An average line, representing the average of all the y values recorded, can easily be added to a run chart to clarify movement of the data away from the average. An average line runs parallel to the x axis. 2. Several variables may be tracked on a single chart, with each variable having its own line. The chart is then called a multiple run chart. 3. Run charts can also be used to track improvements that have been put into place, checking their success. Questions to ask about a run chart: 1. Is the average line where it should be to meet customer requirements? . Is there a significant trend or pattern that should be investigated? Two ways to misinterpret run charts: 1. You conclude that some trend or cycle exists, when in fact you are just seeing normal process variation (and every process will show some variation). 2. You do not recognize a trend or cycle when it does exist. Both of these mistakes are common, but people are generally less aware that they are making the first type, and are tampering with a process which is really behaving normally. To avoid mistakes, use the following rules of thumb for run chart interpretation: 1.

Look at data for a long enough period of time, so that a “usual” range of variation is evident. 2. Is the recent data within the usual range of variation? 3. Is there a daily pattern? Weekly? Monthly? Yearly? Using run charts to detect “special causes” of variation: If you have 25 points or more in your data series, you can use run charts to detect special causes – something beyond the usual variability of the process -acting on the process. 1. Shifts: If you see eight or more consecutive points on one side of the center line, that indicates that a special cause has influenced the process.

Points on the center line don’t count; they neither break the string, nor add to it. 2. Trends: Six consecutive jumps in the same direction indicate that a special cause is acting on the process to cause a trend. Flat line segments don’t count, either to break a trend, or to count towards it. 3. Pattern: If you see a pattern that recurs eight or more times in a row, it is a good idea to look for a special cause. For more robust monitoring of a process, and better information about when your process is showing variation beyond what is expected, try using a control chart.

It will detect special causes more quickly, and with more accuracy. Run chart statistics: For each line in the run chart, the following statistics are calculated: Meanthe average of all the data points in the series. Maximumthe maximum value in the series. Minimumthe minimum value in the series. Sample Sizethe number of values in the series. Rangethe maximum value minus the minimum value. Standard DeviationIndicates how widely data is spread around the mean Cause and Effect What is it? A Cause-and-Effect Diagram (also known as a “Fishbone Diagram”) is a graphical technique for grouping people’s ideas about the causes of a problem.

Who uses it? The team, the users, the manager. Why use it? Using a Cause-and-Effect Diagram forces the team to consider the complexity of the problem and to take an objective look at all the contributing factors. It helps the team to determine both the primary and the secondary causes of a problem and is helpful for organizing the ideas generated from a brainstorming session. When to use it? It is used after the causes have been grouped by relationships (for example, by using a Causal Table or “Why-Because” Technique). It is a useful diagram for problem analysis.

Therefore, a Cause-and-Effect Diagram should be used before deciding how to deal with the problem. How to use it: Before constructing the Cause-and-Effect Diagram, you need to analyze the causes. The steps are as follows: 1. Re-examine the problem by asking: oWhat is the problem? oWho is affected? oWhen does it occur? oWhere does it occur? 2. Brainstorm the team’s ideas about the causes of a problem using the Causal Table or “Why-Because” Technique. 3. The list of causes should be grouped by relationships or common factors using an affinity technique. . You can now illustrate graphically the causes grouped by relationships by using a Cause-and-Effect Diagram where: oThe problem under investigation is described in a box at the head of the diagram. oA long spine with an arrow pointing towards the head forms the backbone of the “fish. ” The direction of the arrow indicates that the items that feed into the spine might cause the problem described in the head. oA few large bones feed into the spine. These large bones represent the main categories of potential causes of the problem.

Again, the arrows represent the direction of the action; the items on the larger bones are thought to cause the problem in the head. oThe smaller bones represent deeper causes of the larger bones they are attached to. Each bone is a link in a Cause-and-Effect chain that leads from the deepest causes to the targeted problem. Example: Here is an example of using a Cause-and-Effect Diagram to analyze a problem. Scatter Diagram Matrix Diagram Matrix scatter diagrams include diverse graph types, can be easily created and modified, and are ideal for (i) exploratory data visualization and (ii) multivariate data representation.

A matrix scatter diagram enables the individual columns in a multivariate set of data to be plotted against each other, allowing you to explore relationships between the variables, with options of connecting data points to group centroids, drawing convex hulls of groups (to aid visualizing the group boundaries and the amount of overlap), etc. Example 1: Half matrix plots (left image displaying a scatter matrix plot; right image represents matrix plot of the same data while connecting data points to group centroids): A Scatter Matrix Diagram Displaying

Groups of Data Identified by Marker Attributes A Scatter Matrix Diagram in Which the Data Points Are Connected to Group Centroids Example 2: Full matrix plots (left image displaying a scatter matrix plot; right image represents matrix plot of the same data while displaying convex hulls of groups): •The matrix scatter enables drawing convex hulls of groups to aid visualizing the group boundaries and the amount of overlap. The polygons can be optionally filled with the corresponding groups’ marker color, and shown with or without the data points they surround. What is a Histogram?

A histogram is “a representation of a frequency distribution by means of rectangles whose widths represent class intervals and whose areas are proportional to the corresponding frequencies. ” Online Webster’s Dictionary Sounds complicated . . . but the concept really is pretty simple. We graph groups of numbers according to how often they appear. Thus if we have the set {1,2,2,3,3,3,3,4,4,5,6}, we can graph them like this: This graph is pretty easy to make and gives us some useful data about the set. For example, the graph peaks at 3, which is also the median and the mode of the set.

The mean of the set is 3. 27—also not far from the peak. The shape of the graph gives us an idea of how the numbers in the set are distributed about the mean: the distribution of this graph is wide compared to size of the peak, indicating that values in the set are only loosely bunched round the mean. How is a Real Histogram Made? The example above is a little too simple. In most real data sets almost all numbers will be unique. Consider the set {3, 11, 12, 19, 22, 23, 24, 25, 27, 29, 35, 36, 37, 45, 49}. A graph which shows how many ones, how many twos, how many threes, etc. ould be meaningless. Instead we bin the data into convenient ranges. In this case, with a bin width of 10, we can easily group the data as below. Note: Changing the size of the bin changes the apprearance of the graph and the conclusions you may draw from it. The Shodor histogram activity allows you to change the bin size for a data set and the impact on the curve. Data Range Frequency 0-10 1 10-20 3 20-30 6 30-40 4 40-50 2 Note that the median is 25 and that there is no mode; the mean is 26. 5. How Shall We Look at Histograms?

Of course, part of the power of histograms is that they allow us to analyze extremely large datasets by reducing them to a single graph that can show primary, secondary and tertiary peaks in data as well as give a visual representation of the statistical significance of those peaks. To get an idea, look at these three histograms: This plot represents data with a well-defined peak that is close in value to the median and the mean. While there are “outlyers,” they are of relatively low frequency. Thus it can be said that deviations in this data group from the mean are of low frequency.

If this were a mass plot in particle physics, we’d say the mass is understood with good precision. In this plot the peak is still fairly close to the median and the mean but it is much less defined. It is harder to tell from the plot what the exact location of the peak is. There are almost as many values close to the peak as at the peak itself and outlyers are frequent. As a particle physics mass plot, this gives an imprecise and undertain mass of a particle. Where are the median and the mean? It is hard to tell; it also may not be relevant. There are two peaks in this plot: a taller primary peak as well as a shorter secondary peak.

This could indicate either very poor definition of one signal in the data or, more likely, two signals. In particle physics, this could show two separate particles or, as is often the case, a large signal with “background” particles and a smaller signal (sometimes very small), called a “bump,” which shows the actual particle under study. Control Chart What is it? A Control Chart is a tool you can use to monitor a process. It graphically depicts the average value and the upper and lower control limits (the highest and lowest values) of a process. Who uses it? The management, the team.

Why use it? All processes have some form of variation. A Control Chart helps you distinguish between normal and unusual variation in a process. If you want to reduce the amount of variation in a process, you need to compare the results of the process with a standard. Variation can exist for two reasons: 1. Common causes are flaws inherent in the design of the process. 2. Special causes are variations from standards caused by employees or by unusual circumstances or events. Most variations in processes are caused by flaws in the system or the process, not by the employees.

Once you realize this, you can stop blaming the employees and start changing the systems and processes that cause the employees to make mistakes. (It is important to remember, however, that some variations are not “mistakes” introduced by employees, but, rather, they are innovations. Some variations are deliberately introduced to processes by employees specifically because these variations are found to be more practical. ) When to use it? First, you need to define the standards of how things should be. Then, you need to monitor (collect data) about processes in your organization.

Then, you create a control graph using the monitoring data. How to use it: 1. Select the process to be charted and decide on the type of control chart to use. oUse a Percent Nonconforming Chart (more information available from Health Tactics P Chart) if you have data measured using two outcomes (for example, the billing can be correct or incorrect). oUse an Average and Range Control Chart (more information available from Health Tactics X-R Chart) if you have data measured using a continuous scale (for example, waiting time in the health center). 2. Determine your sampling method and plan: Choose the sample size (how many samples will you obtain? ). oChoose the frequency of sampling, depending on the process to be evaluated (months, days, years? ). oMake sure you get samples at random (don’t always get data from the same person, on the same day of the week, etc. ). 3. Start data collection: oGather the sampled data. oRecord data on the appropriate control graph. 4. Calculate the appropriate statistics (the control limits) depending on the type of graph. 5. Observation: The control graph is divided into zones: ______________________________ Upper Control Limit (UCL) ______________________________ Standard (average) _____________________________ Lower Control Limit (LCL) 6. Interpret the graph: oIf the data fluctuates within the limits, it is the result of common causes within the process (flaws inherent in the process) and can only be affected if the system is improved or changed. oIf the data falls outside of the limits, it is the result of special causes (in human service organizations, special causes can include bad instruction, lack of training, ineffective processes, or inadequate support systems). oThese special causes must be eliminated before the control chart can be used as a monitoring tool.

In a health setting, for example, staff may need better instruction or training, or processes may need to be improved, before the process is “under control. ” Once the process is “under control,” samples can be taken at regular intervals to assure that the process does not fundamentally change. oA process is said to be “out of control” if one or more points falls outside the control limits. Seven Management and Planning Tools 1. Affinity Diagram Also called: affinity chart, K-J method Variation: thematic analysis Description The affinity diagram organizes a large number of ideas into their natural relationships.

This method taps a team’s creativity and intuition. It was created in the 1960s by Japanese anthropologist Jiro Kawakita. When to Use an Affinity Diagram •When you are confronted with many facts or ideas in apparent chaos •When issues seem too large and complex to grasp •When group consensus is necessary Typical situations are: •After a brainstorming exercise •When analyzing verbal data, such as survey results. Affinity Diagram Procedure Materials needed: sticky notes or cards, marking pens, large work surface (wall, table, or floor). 1. Record each idea with a marking pen on a separate sticky note or card. During a brainstorming session, write directly onto sticky notes or cards if you suspect you will be following the brainstorm with an affinity diagram. ) Randomly spread notes on a large work surface so all notes are visible to everyone. The entire team gathers around the notes and participates in the next steps. 2. It is very important that no one talk during this step. Look for ideas that seem to be related in some way. Place them side by side. Repeat until all notes are grouped. It’s okay to have “loners” that don’t seem to fit a group. It’s all right to move a note someone else has already moved.

If a note seems to belong in two groups, make a second note. 3. You can talk now. Participants can discuss the shape of the chart, any surprising patterns, and especially reasons for moving controversial notes. A few more changes may be made. When ideas are grouped, select a heading for each group. Look for a note in each grouping that captures the meaning of the group. Place it at the top of the group. If there is no such note, write one. Often it is useful to write or highlight this note in a different color. 4. Combine groups into “supergroups” if appropriate.

Affinity Diagram Example The ZZ-400 manufacturing team used an affinity diagram to organize its list of potential performance indicators. Figure 1 shows the list team members brainstormed. Because the team works a shift schedule and members could not meet to do the affinity diagram together, they modified the procedure. Figure 1 Brainstorming for Affinity Diagram Example They wrote each idea on a sticky note and put all the notes randomly on a rarely used door. Over several days, everyone reviewed the notes in their spare time and moved the notes into related groups.

Some people reviewed the evolving pattern several times. After a few days, the natural grouping shown in figure 2 had emerged. Notice that one of the notes, “Safety,” has become part of the heading for its group. The rest of the headings were added after the grouping emerged. Five broad areas of performance were identified: product quality, equipment maintenance, manufacturing cost, production volume, and safety and environmental. Figure 2 Affinity Diagram Example Affinity Diagram Considerations •The affinity diagram process lets a group move beyond its habitual thinking and preconceived categories.

This technique accesses the great knowledge and understanding residing untapped in our intuition. •Very important “Do nots”: Do not place the notes in any order. Do not determine categories or headings in advance. Do not talk during step 2. (This is hard for some people! ) •Allow plenty of time for step 2. You can, for example, post the randomly-arranged notes in a public place and allow grouping to happen over several days. •Most groups that use this technique are amazed at how powerful and valuable a tool it is. Try it once with an open mind and you’ll be another convert. •Use markers.

With regular pens, it is hard to read ideas from any distance 2. Relations Diagram Also called: interrelationship diagram or digraph, network diagram Variation: matrix relations diagram Description The relations diagram shows cause-and-effect relationships. Just as importantly, the process of creating a relations diagram helps a group analyze the natural links between different aspects of a complex situation. When to Use a Relations Diagram •When trying to understand links between ideas or cause-and-effect relationships, such as when trying to identify an area of greatest impact for improvement. When a complex issue is being analyzed for causes. •When a complex solution is being implemented. •After generating an affinity diagram, cause-and-effect diagram or tree diagram, to more completely explore the relations of ideas. Relations Diagram Basic Procedure Materials needed: sticky notes or cards, large paper surface (newsprint or two flipchart pages taped together), marking pens, tape. 1. Write a statement defining the issue that the relations diagram will explore. Write it on a card or sticky note and place it at the top of the work surface. 2. Brainstorm ideas about the issue and write them on cards or notes. If nother tool has preceded this one, take the ideas from the affinity diagram, the most detailed row of the tree diagram or the final branches on the fishbone diagram. You may want to use these ideas as starting points and brainstorm additional ideas. 3. Place one idea at a time on the work surface and ask: “Is this idea related to any others? ” Place ideas that are related near the first. Leave space between cards to allow for drawing arrows later. Repeat until all cards are on the work surface. 4. For each idea, ask, “Does this idea cause or influence any other idea? ” Draw arrows from each idea to the ones it causes or influences.

Repeat the question for every idea. 5. Analyze the diagram: oCount the arrows in and out for each idea. Write the counts at the bottom of each box. The ones with the most arrows are the key ideas. oNote which ideas have primarily outgoing (from) arrows. These are basic causes. oNote which ideas have primarily incoming (to) arrows. These are final effects that also may be critical to address. Be sure to check whether ideas with fewer arrows also are key ideas. The number of arrows is only an indicator, not an absolute rule. Draw bold lines around the key ideas. Relations Diagram Example

A computer support group is planning a major project: replacing the mainframe computer. The group drew a relations diagram (see figure below) to sort out a confusing set of elements involved in this project. Relations Diagram Example “Computer replacement project” is the card identifying the issue. The ideas that were brainstormed were a mixture of action steps, problems, desired results and less-desirable effects to be handled. All these ideas went onto the diagram together. As the questions were asked about relationships and causes, the mixture of ideas began to sort itself out. After all the arrows were drawn, key issues became clear.

They are outlined with bold lines. •“New software” has one arrow in and six arrows out. “Install new mainframe” has one arrow in and four out. Both ideas are basic causes. •“Service interruptions” and “increased processing cost” both have three arrows in, and the group identified them as key effects to avoid. 3. Tree Diagram Also called: systematic diagram, tree analysis, analytical tree, hierarchy diagram Description The tree diagram starts with one item that branches into two or more, each of which branch into two or more, and so on. It looks like a tree, with trunk and multiple branches.

It is used to break down broad categories into finer and finer levels of detail. Developing the tree diagram helps you move your thinking step by step from generalities to specifics. When to Use a Tree Diagram •When an issue is known or being addressed in broad generalities and you must move to specific details, such as when developing logical steps to achieve an objective. •When developing actions to carry out a solution or other plan. •When analyzing processes in detail. •When probing for the root cause of a problem. •When evaluating implementation issues for several potential solutions. After an affinity diagram or relations diagram has uncovered key issues. •As a communication tool, to explain details to others. Tree Diagram Procedure 1. Develop a statement of the goal, project, plan, problem or whatever is being studied. Write it at the top (for a vertical tree) or far left (for a horizontal tree) of your work surface. 2. Ask a question that will lead you to the next level of detail. For example: oFor a goal, action plan or work breakdown structure: “What tasks must be done to accomplish this? ” or “How can this be accomplished? ” oFor root-cause analysis: “What causes this? ” or “Why does this happen? oFor gozinto chart: “What are the components? ” (Gozinto literally comes from the phrase “What goes into it? ” Brainstorm all possible answers. If an affinity diagram or relationship diagram has been done previously, ideas may be taken from there. Write each idea in a line below (for a vertical tree) or to the right of (for a horizontal tree) the first statement. Show links between the tiers with arrows. 3. Do a “necessary and sufficient” check. Are all the items at this level necessary for the one on the level above? If all the items at this level were present or accomplished, would they be sufficient for the one on the level above? . Each of the new idea statements now becomes the subject: a goal, objective or problem statement. For each one, ask the question again to uncover the next level of detail. Create another tier of statements and show the relationships to the previous tier of ideas with arrows. Do a “necessary and sufficient check” for each set of items. 5. Continue to turn each new idea into a subject statement and ask the question. Do not stop until you reach fundamental elements: specific actions that can be carried out, components that are not divisible, root causes. 6.

Do a “necessary and sufficient” check of the entire diagram. Are all the items necessary for the objective? If all the items were present or accomplished, would they be sufficient for the objective? Tree Diagram Example The Pearl River, NY School District, a 2001 recipient of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, uses a tree diagram to communicate how district-wide goals are translated into sub-goals and individual projects. They call this connected approach “The Golden Thread. ” The district has three fundamental goals. The first, to improve academic performance, is partly shown in the figure below.

District leaders have identified two strategic objectives that, when accomplished, will lead to improved academic performance: academic achievement and college admissions. Tree Diagram Example Lag indicators are long-term and results-oriented. The lag indicator for academic achievement is Regents’ diploma rate: the percent of students receiving a state diploma by passing eight Regents’ exams. Lead indicators are short-term and process-oriented. Starting in 2000, the lead indicator for the Regents’ diploma rate was performance on new fourth and eighth grade state tests.

Finally, annual projects are defined, based on cause-and-effect analysis that will improve performance. In 2000–2001, four projects were accomplished to improve academic achievement. Thus this tree diagram is an interlocking series of goals and indicators, tracing the causes of system wide academic performance first through high school diploma rates, then through lower grade performance, and back to specific improvement projects. The prioritization matrix is a great tool, but it is not used much. The reason is probably because it takes a lot of time to do manually, and it can be confusing.

To make it more usable, this article provides an automated template for using the tool. The prioritization matrix is a great tool, but it does not seem to be used as much as it could be. The reason is probably because it takes a lot of time to do manually, and it can be confusing. To make the tool more usable, this article is accompanied by an automated template in the form of an Excel spreadsheet. The prioritization matrix, also know as the criteria matrix, is used to compare choices relative to criteria like price, service, ease of use and almost any other factor desired.

While this tool can be used effectively by an individual, it is great for helping Six Sigma project teams with decision making. The “seven management and planning tools” was taught to many by Michael Brassard, who wrote The Memory Jogger II in 1994. In his book, he said the prioritization matrix is said to: •Quickly surface basic disagreements so that they may be resolved up front. •Force a team to focus on the best things to do, not everything they could do, dramatically increasing the chances for implementation success. •Limit hidden agendas by surfacing the criteria as a necessary part of the process. Increase the chance of follow-through because consensus is sought at each step in the process (from criteria to conclusions). •Reduce the chances of selecting someone’s pet project. Within the Six Sigma methodology, there are several places where this tool is just made for the job – from selecting projects, to determining which measurement instrument to use, to control the new processes. This tool can be useful in resolving the tradeoffs necessary in product and service design like those indicated in the “roof” of the quality function deployment house of quality.

At TREQ Corporation, the tool is used extensively in making business decisions and in facilitating teams. (The author has even used it in choosing a house – comparing prices, numbers of rooms, garage sizes and locations. ) On the prioritization matrix Excel spreadsheet, up to nine criteria can be entered, but the number of criteria can be expanded if necessary. Importantly, the spreadsheet allows weights to be assigned to the criteria since not all criteria are of equal importance. The example used in the explanation of the matrix is from on a fictitious project to evaluate and choose knowledge management software.

Here is a step-by-step outline of how the matrix is used: Step 1: Open the Excel spreadsheet. Enter each of the criteria for judging a product or process on a separate line in the first column of initial gray box titled “criteria weight” (Figure 1), replacing existing criteria (or criteria #) with the new criteria. The criteria entered automatically will be placed in all the following comparison matrices, the summary matrix and the selection graph. Figure 1 Figure 2 Step 2: Compare the first criteria to each of the others by choosing the most appropriate value from the values chart (Figure 2) and putting it in the matrix. Note: Clicking on the “values” window will allow it to be dragged out of the way and repositioned to any location on the spreadsheet. Teams need this reference, particularly at first, to remind them of the evaluation description and its value. ) In the example, the first comparison is between “little to no customization necessary” and “service costs. ” The number 0. 20 was entered, which indicates the team’s evaluation was that little need for customization to be of “less value” than service costs. The matrix automatically enters the reciprocal of less value, which obviously is “more value,” or the number 5. 0, in the appropriate place on the service costs line. Continue the process by comparing the first criteria with each other criteria on the list. Then repeat the process for the criteria on the second, third, fourth, etc. lines, comparing them to the criteria not yet compared. Only put a value in the solid gray areas; the reciprocal value will be calculated and inserted in the light gray areas automatically. Step 3: Enter each of the products or processes being evaluated on a separate line in the first column of the second gray box (Figure 3).

The entries automatically will be placed in all the other comparison matrices, the summary matrix and the summary graph. Figure 3 Step 4: Now, compare the choices to one another considering each criteria. The team should use the same values that were used to compare the criteria, or characteristics, one to another. In the example, the “MicroLog” product was rated by the team as “much more value” (10. 00) than the “EMG” product in terms of little need for customization. Consequently the reciprocal value, or 0. 10, was automatically entered for the EMG offering.

Again, the team need only put a value in the solid gray areas; the reciprocal values automatically will be calculated for the light gray areas. Step 5: After all the entries are made, results can be read in the summary matrix (Figure 4) and the selection graph (Figure 5). Figure 4 Figure 5 Process Decision Program Chart Also called: PDPC Description The process decision program chart systematically identifies what might go wrong in a plan under development. Countermeasures are developed to prevent or offset those problems.

By using PDPC, you can either revise the plan to avoid the problems or be ready with the best response when a problem occurs. When to Use PDPC •Before implementing a plan, especially when the plan is large and complex. •When the plan must be completed on schedule. •When the price of failure is high. PDPC Procedure 1. Obtain or develop a tree diagram of the proposed plan. This should be a high-level diagram showing the objective, a second level of main activities and a third level of broadly defined tasks to accomplish the main activities. 2. For each task on the third level, brainstorm what could go wrong. . Review all the potential problems and eliminate any that are improbable or whose consequences would be insignificant. Show the problems as a fourth level linked to the tasks. 4. For each potential problem, brainstorm possible countermeasures. These might be actions or changes to the plan that would prevent the problem, or actions that would remedy it once it occurred. Show the countermeasures as a fifth level, outlined in clouds or jagged lines. 5. Decide how practical each countermeasure is. Use criteria such as cost, time required, ease of implementation and effectiveness.

Mark impractical countermeasures with an X and practical ones with an O. Here are some questions that can be used to identify problems: oWhat inputs must be present? Are there any undesirable inputs linked to the good inputs? oWhat outputs are we expecting? Might others happen as well? oWhat is this supposed to do? Is there something else that it might do instead or in addition? oDoes this depend on actions, conditions or events? Are these controllable or uncontrollable? oWhat cannot be changed or is inflexible? oHave we allowed any margin for error? oWhat assumptions are we making that could turn out to be wrong? What has been our experience in similar situations in the past? oHow is this different from before? oIf we wanted this to fail, how could we accomplish that? PDPC Example A medical group is planning to improve the care of patients with chronic illnesses such as diabetes and asthma through a new chronic illness management program (CIMP). They have defined four main elements and, for each of these elements, key components. The information is laid out in the process decision program chart below. Dotted lines represent sections of the chart that have been omitted.

Only some of the potential problems and countermeasures identified by the planning team are shown on this chart. Process Decision Program Chart Example For example, one of the possible problems with patients’ goal-setting is backsliding. The team liked the idea of each patient having a buddy or sponsor and will add that to the program design. Other areas of the chart helped them plan better rollout, such as arranging for all staff to visit a clinic with a CIMP program in place. Still other areas allowed them to plan in advance for problems, such as training the CIMP nurses how to counsel patients who choose inappropriate goals.

Activity Network Diagram Description : An activity network Diagram is also called: arrow diagram, network diagram, activity chart, node diagram, CPM (critical path method) chart or PERT (pr When to Use: • When scheduling and monitoring tasks within a project or process with several dependant tasks and resources. • When you know the steps of the project or process, their sequence and how long each step takes. • When your project schedule is critical. There is a serious consequences for completing the project late or a significant advantage to completing the project early. Drawing the Activity Network Diagram Procedure : . List all the necessary tasks in the project or process. One convenient method is to write each task on the top half of a notecard or a sticky note. Then across the middle of the card, draw a horizontal arrow pointing right. 2. Determine the correct sequence of the tasks. Do this by asking three questions for each task: o Which tasks must happen before this one begins? o Which tasks can be done at the same time as this one? o Which tasks should happen immediately after this one? It can be useful to create a table with four columns —prior tasks, this task, simultaneous tasks, following tasks. . Diagram the network of tasks. If you are using sticky notes or notecards, arrange them in sequence on a large piece of paper. For the activity network diagram, time should flow from left to right and concurrent tasks should be vertically aligned. Leave space between the cards. 4. Between each two tasks, draw circles for “events. ” An event marks the beginning or end of a task. Thus, events are nodes that separate tasks. 5. Look for the three common problem situations noted below. Redraw them using “dummies” or extra events. Characterize a dummy with a dotted line arrow.

Dummies are not real tasks. Problem situations: • Two simultaneous tasks start and end at the same events. Solution: Use a dummy and an extra event to separate them. In Figure 1 , event 2 and the dummy between 2 and 3 have been added to separate tasks A and B. • Task C cannot start until both tasks A and B are complete; a fourth task, D, cannot start until A is complete, but need not wait for B. (See Figure 2. ) Solution: Use a dummy between the end of task A and the beginning of task C. • A second task can be started before part of a first task is done.

Solution: Add an extra event where the second task can begin and use multiple arrows to break the first task into two subtasks. In Figure 3, event 2 was added, splitting task A. 7. Determine task times—the best estimate of the time that each task should require. Use one measuring unit (hours, days or weeks) throughout, for consistency. Write the time on each task’s arrow. 8. Within the Activity Network Diagram determine the “critical path,” the longest path from the beginning to the end of the project. Mark the critical path with a heavy line or color. Calculate the length of the critical path: the sum of all the task times on the path. . Calculate the earliest times each task can start and finish, based on how long preceding tasks take. These are called earliest start (ES) and earliest finish (EF). Start with the first task, where ES = 0, and work forward. Finish the Activity Network Diagram by drawing a square divided into four quadrants, as in Figure 4. Write the ES in the top left box and the EF in the top right. For each task: o Earliest start (ES) = the largest EF of the tasks leading into this one o Earliest finish (EF) = ES + task time for this task ogram evaluation and review technique) chart .