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Quality Control - TQM, Six Sigma, ISO 9000/quality improvement road map guideline

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Question
QUESTION: recently i was asked by one my client about my company's quality improvement road map. i was taken a back by his question. im stil new in this industry so this is the 1st time i come across this. could u explain further on this matter and could u provide a guideline or some sort in order for me to understand this matter better? im in the electronic assembly industry. thank you in advance for your help.

ANSWER: The quality improvement road map is a term I have not heard used in this context.  Basically a road map in general terms is a company's policies, procedures and instructions on how a company has put in place to improve the quality of their products or services.  In the electronic industry there are constantly new technology being created.  A quality roadmap would involve how improvements are evaluated as to their application to an individual company.

Each company is different but there needs to be a process for quality improvement of any product or service and the road map would identify how this would be achieved including the policies, procedures and any evaluation activity.  Improvements are always going to be developed and to stay in business and keep customers and/or get new ones a company must have a process for achieving improvements in the quality of what they produce.  The process created is their road map to quality improvement.

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QUESTION: as im stil new in the industry, i have tried to improve the operating standard as well as the guideline. so far i only achieve a small improvement despite my best effort. could u recommend and give ideas on how to improve the staff's skills and discipline. i beginning to love this job but its driving me nuts over the reliability of the operators on production as well as the quality control.

Answer
I would look at the contractual requirements both for the products and the quality requirements.  I would then look at the training employees have received compared to industry standards/best practices and compare the best practices with what employees are now doing.

In addition I would look at the language currently in place and get some feedback as to their understanding of the instructions/procedures in place to determine if some clarification is needed to clearly convey the requirements in terms anyone can understand.  This may be a long process dependent upon the quantity of procedures/instructions you have in place so I would take it one step or process at a time.  As you improve one area you will move on to the next.

Reliability of the equipment can also be a concern as it may not necessarily be the fault of an operation but the equipment.  I would get input as to opinions from operators about the equipment they use if it is up to the requirements to produce a product meeting both expectations and contractual requirements.

Quality Control - TQM, Six Sigma, ISO 9000

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Dennis AuBuchon

Expertise

I cannot answer questions on Six Sigma. I cannot answer questions as they relate to software programs. I can answer questions related to TQM principles. I can answer question on ISO 9000 quality system principles and requirements as they relate to quality system procedures and instructions. I can answer questions as they relate to integrity principles and quality system/control requirements. I can answer questions related to quality control procedures and instructions. I can answer questions related to quality auditing, procedures and instructions.

Experience

I am a certified quality auditor with the American Society for Quality in Milwaulkee, Wisconsin and have been since 1992. I have over 25 years experience in quality control/system responsibilities. I have written a book titled Integrity: Do You Have It? 2nd edition. I have written over 40 articles on integrity regarding various issues and concerns in society. I have taught quality auditing classes for my work. I have experience as a quality program manager. This involved knowing the requirements, analyzing the procedures/instructions and assuring they conform to contractual requirements. I have written position descriptions for various job functions. I organized and managed a seminar related to ISO 9000 quality system requirements in the 1990's. I am also familiar with the current issue of the documents.

Organizations
I belong to the American Society for Quality and have since 1989.

Publications
My writing has appeared in the Education Division, Management Division and Quality Auditing Division of the American Society for Quality. The title of the articles was Integrity in Education, Integrity in Management and Integrity in Auditing. Other articles are published on line through ideamarketers.com and helium.com. I also have a blog on blogger.com where several articles are posted.

Education/Credentials
I am a certified quality auditor with the American Society for Quality since 1992. I have created and taught classes related to ISO 9000 quality system requirements. I have training in leadership and facilitation. I held the position of Education Chairman for 6 years for my local branch of the American Society for Quality. I am also self taught in many cases. I have learned much about quality systems through my own initiatives such as reading books, magazines and information available on the Internet. I belong to the American Society for Quality (ASQ) and read the monthly magazine which keeps me abreast of current issues and trends. My local section of ASQ has monthly meetings for which speakers present various topics of interest to quality.

Awards and Honors
I was nominated twice for excellence in my work and ranked in the top 10 in my area both times.

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