3 Aspects of Quality Management to Help Your Project

Sunday, November 1, 2015, AM | Leave Comment

There are many specific quality techniques that can help you be more successful on your project. There are also a number of higher-level concepts that describe your overall approach to quality.

These help establish the right environment where the entire team thinks about quality on an ongoing basis. Here are three concepts to take to heart.

3 Aspects of Quality Management to Help Your Project

  1. Stress That Quality is Everyone’s Responsibility

    The project manager has overall responsibility for the quality management process.

    However, even if you have specific people who have responsibilities for quality, project quality is not the responsibility of one or two people.

    It is everyone’s responsibility. All of the team, including the customer, has a stake in ensuring that the deliverables produced are of high quality.

    Everyone is also responsible for surfacing ideas for improvement to the processes used to create the deliverables.

  2. Make Sure Quality is a Mindset, Not an Event

    On some projects, quality is seen as a particular step in the process, or perhaps a series of activities at the end of the process.

    However, to be effective, the team needs to adopt a continuous quality mindset.

    Project quality starts with planning but the execution of quality must be carried out throughout the project.

    A multifaceted approach to quality will include the following items:

    • Establishing a Quality Management Plan early in the project

    • Building quality into the team (training, communication, etc.)

    • Building quality into the work processes (analysis, design, etc.)

    • Building quality into project management deliverables

    • Building quality into project deliverables

    Team members need to take ownership of the deliverables that they produce and ensure that the deliverables are built with quality when they are first created.

  3. Think About Common and Special Causes of Product Errors

    When you look at the causes of product defects (errors), you will notice that they fall into two general categories.

    Dr. Deming called these errors “special cause” and “common cause”.

    • Special cause” errors are those that the local users of the product can find and fix.

      These include malfunctions, lack of training, misuse of equipment, vandalism, etc.

      In this case, errors occur but it is pretty easy to track the errors back to the root cause.

    • Common causes” can cause large variations in quality and include systematic problems that the local users may not be aware of.

      For instance, common cause errors can include minor imperfections in equipment, poor product design, slow wear and tear on equipment, processes that are working but not optimized, etc.

      These are “common” problems, but they are very hard for the local users to detect.

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This column is © copyright to www.Method123.com and originally appeared in their weekly project management tip newsletter.

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