Quality Tools

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  • Topic: Quality control tools, Ishikawa diagram, Seven Basic Tools of Quality
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  • Published : February 1, 2011
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Seven Basic Management Tools
"The Old Seven."

"The First Seven."

"The Basic Seven."

Quality pros have many names for these seven basic tools of quality, first emphasized by Kaoru Ishikawa, a professor of engineering at Tokyo University and the father of “quality circles.”

Start your quality journey by mastering these tools, and you'll have a name for them too: "indispensable." 1. Cause-and-effect diagram (also called Ishikawa or fishbone chart): Identifies many possible causes for an effect or problem and sorts ideas into useful categories. 2. Check sheet: A structured, prepared form for collecting and analyzing data; a generic tool that can be adapted for a wide variety of purposes. 3. Control charts: Graphs used to study how a process changes over time. 4. Histogram: The most commonly used graph for showing frequency distributions, or how often each different value in a set of data occurs. 5. Pareto chart: Shows on a bar graph which factors are more significant. 6. Scatter diagram: Graphs pairs of numerical data, one variable on each axis, to look for a relationship. 7. Stratification: A technique that separates data gathered from a variety of sources so that patterns can be seen (some lists replace "stratification" with "flowchart" or "run chart"). 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 the seven new quality control tools, often called the seven management and planning (MP) tools, or simply the seven management tools. Not all the tools were new, but their collection and promotion were. Seven New Management Tools

The seven tools, listed in an order that moves from abstract analysis to detailed planning, are: 1. Affinity diagram: organizes a large number of ideas into their natural relationships.

2. Relations diagram: shows cause-and-effect relationships and helps you analyze the natural links between different aspects of a complex situation.

3. Tree diagram: breaks down broad categories into finer and finer levels of detail, helping you move your thinking step by step from generalities to specifics.

4. 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.

5. Matrix data analysis: a complex mathematical technique for analyzing matrices, often replaced in this list by the similar prioritization matrix. One of the most rigorous, careful and time-consuming of decision-making tools, 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).

6. 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.

7. Process decision program chart (PDPC): systematically identifies what might go wrong in a plan under development.

Plan–Do–Check–Act Cycle
Also called: PDCA, plan–do–study–act (PDSA) cycle, Deming cycle, Shewhart cycle Description
The plan–do–check–act cycle (Figure 1) is a four-step model for carrying out change. Just as a circle has no end, the PDCA cycle should be repeated again and again for continuous improvement. [pic]

Figure 1: Plan-do-check-act cycle
When to Use Plan-Do-Check-Act
• As a model for continuous improvement.
• When starting a new improvement project.
• When developing a new or improved design of a process, product or service. • When defining a repetitive work process.
• When planning data collection and analysis in order to verify and prioritize problems or root causes. • When implementing any change.
Plan-Do-Check-Act Procedure
1. Plan. Recognize an...
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