Plan-Do-Check-Act Cycle of Decision-Making

Topics: W. Edwards Deming, PDCA, Business process improvement Pages: 3 (1164 words) Published: August 7, 2006
Plan-Do-Check-Act Cycle of Decision-Making
There are a number of tools and techniques used to make sound business decisions that will help to resolve a particular problem or area that needs improvement. There is not one correct tool or technique to be used for each problem faced and not all are appropriate for all problems. He or she should examine the available tools and techniques and apply one or more than one that will help to resolve the problem faced. One of those tools and techniques is the "Plan-Do-Check-Act" or PDCA cycle. The PDCA cycle is made up of four stages, Plan, Do, Check, and Act that are progressed in order and are dependent on each stages success. History

"The PDCA Cycle was originally developed by Walter Shewhart, the pioneering statistician who developed statistical process control in the Bell Laboratories in the US during the 1930's. It is often referred to as the "Shewhart Cycle". It was taken up and promoted very effectively from the 1950s on by the famous Quality Management authority, W. Edwards Deming, and is consequently known by many as the "Deming Wheel". (2006) The PDCA cycle is used to make continuous improvements to a particular process or problem. (2006) Each stage of the cycle can be repeated again with each stage applying a new resolution to the overall problem that will eventually end up with the overall solution. Stages

The first stage of the PDCA cycle is called the Plan stage. During the plan stage a problem is identified or an opportunity is identified for improvement. (2006) This stage is better referred to as the analysis stage. During this stage information gathering occurs and a potential solution is theorized. This stage will devise a plan to resolve the problem or opportunity for improvement to be applied in the next stage. The second stage of the PDCA cycle is called the Do stage. The Do stage is designed to solve the problem on a small or experimental scale first. This is necessary in order to minimize the...
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