Step 1: Define the problem and establish an improvement goal. Step 2: Develop performance measure and collect data.
Step 3: Analyze the problem.
Step 4: Generate potential solutions.
Step 5: Choose a solution.
Step 6: Implement the solution.
Step 7: Monitor the solution to see if it accomplishes the goals.
The Plan-do-study-act (PDSA) cycle. Also referred to as either the sherwhart cycle or the Deming wheel, is the conceptual basic for problem-solving activities. The cycle is illustrated the figure. Representing the process with a circle underscore its continuing nature
There are four basic steps in the cycle:
Plans begin by studying the current process. Document that process. Then collect data on the process or problem. Next analyze the data and develop a plan for improvement. Specific measure for evaluating the plan. Do Implement the plan, on a small scale if possible. Document any change made during this phase. Collect data systematically for evaluation. Study Evaluate the data collection during the do phase. Check how closely the results match the original goals of the plan phase. Act If the results are successful, standardize the new method and communicate the new method to all people associated with the process.
Employing this sequence of step provides a systematic approach to continuous improvement.