Quality Progress - January 2016 - (Page 25)
BACK TO BASICS
BY T. DAN NELSON
In the Beginning ...
Identifying where a process starts and ends
THE 2015 version of ISO 9001 is expected
-a sales process. The chain in another
the material has been pulled from the stag-
to clarify the requirements to apply a
organization might not have marketing
ing area and verified by a machinist at the
process approach to quality management.
or design processes at all and could start
specific machine (instead of being verified
A common question arises from those new
with a sales process. It depends on what
by receiving personnel).
to the process approach: "Where does a
an organization specializes in and how it
process begin and where does it end?"
is structured to operate. It also depends
process might be viewed as starting when
on how management decides to define the
a router is handed to a machinist, who
is important. The simple answer: It doesn't
links and the connections between those
goes to the staging area, finds the order's
matter. As long as it's well defined and
previously verified material, and transports
This is a good question, and the answer
consistent with the inputs and outputs of
Each link on the chain connects to
In the former case, the production
it to the machine. In the latter case, when
interacting processes, the beginnings and
other links. These connections, or process
the router is handed to the machinist, the
endings become clear. A process begins
interactions, are defined in terms of pro-
material has already been transported to
where management says it does. This goes
cess inputs and outputs. Each input is a
the specific machine having been previous-
for the end of a process as well.
defined output from somewhere, and each
ly verified by a machinist. Again, it doesn't
output will be required at some point by a
matter. By the design of the system, as
long as somebody appropriately verifies
Think of realization processes or core
processes as being links of a chain. While
the activities composing any process also
A properly defined system outlines the
incoming material before we start adding
may be viewed as links of a chain, the
process so the inputs and outputs of each
focus here is on a system of processes.
process are clear, complete and consistent
Here, each link represents a real organiza-
with inputs and outputs of other process-
are defined, and inputs to processes match
tional business process. Imagine that this
es. The links of the chain should be sound-
with outputs from previous processes, and
chain begins with a customer requirement
ly connected. If all goes well following the
outputs from processes match with inputs
and ends with the delivery of a product or
links, the chain culminates in a product
to ensuing processes, the beginnings and
service that meets the customer's needs.
that meets customer requirements.
endings of the processes have been clearly
Generally, as long as inputs and outputs
It's known as a value chain.
The chain in one organization might
value to it, it's OK.
When a process ends
In the end, it's really about effective-
start with marketing or design processes
For example, one machining company
ness. If a defined system of processes is
followed by -or even concurrent with
might define a receiving process as being
coherent (inputs reconcile with outputs),
each process is performed as planned, and
following these plans produces acceptable
have been veri-
results, the planned arrangements can be
fied by receiving
considered to be effectively implemented.
Ultimately, it's up to management, and
with their respec-
nobody else, to decide where processes
tive job number
begin, end and how they interact. QP
and staged for
the staging area.
might say that the
T. DAN NELSON is the principal at
T.D. Nelson in Denver. He earned his
master's degree in business administration from the University of Iowa
in Iowa City.
is not finished until
January 2016 * QP 25
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Quality Progress - January 2016
According to Plan
Use Your Head
Stakeholder Management 101
All About Data
Eight Simple Steps
Which Six Sigma Metric Should I Use?
Turning ‘Who’ Into ‘How’
In the Beginning
Outputs and Outcomes
That’s So Random—Or Is It?
Improving a System
Putting It All on the Table
Know the Drill
It’s Fun To Work With an F-M-E-A
Solve Problems With Open Communication
Tell Me About It
Separate the Vital Few From the Trivial Many
To DMAIC or Not to DMAIC?
Breaking It Down
1 + 1 = Zero Defects
Curve Your Enthusiasm
Make a Choice
What Is a Fault Tree Analysis?
Successful Relationship Diagrams
The Benefits of PDCA
Return on Investment
The Art of Root Cause Analysis
Why Ask Why?
Get to the Root of It
Checks and Balances
Clearing SPC Hurdles
Supplier Selection and Maintenance
Building a Quality Team
Plan Experiments to Prevent Problems
Quality Progress - January 2016