Thinking of quality as a one-dimensional review process is wrong.  There are in fact three (3) facets to ensuring quality products:  Quality Assurance, Quality Control and Quality Insights.  Each of these plays a critical part in achieving the operational efficiency and effectiveness derived from the program. 

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Quality Assurance- This is the commitment from management confirming the focus of the operation on producing quality products.  It involves setting the objectives, implementing the processes and technology, training the staff and then reviewing the results for changes that are necessary to meet the objectives.


Quality Control- The sampling, reviewing and reporting on the actual results of the process is the responsibility of Quality Control.  This program is based on sound review methodologies and collects data in a standardized approach that allows for on-going comparisons and analysis.  Based on the results of the review process, a report is delivered to management to provide the information they need to determine if the operational process is working correctly.


Quality Insights- Once the results are gathered, it is critical that they be presented in a manner that gives management the insight they need to determine what, if anything needs to be improved.  Because it is important to understand the capabilities of your operational processes, management should have control charts that track the rate of defects above and below the mean.  Management should also be provided with the knowledge of how their organization varies from the industry average.  Industry benchmarking tools are critical for this analysis.  At the conclusion of each review and reporting cycle, management should have an in-depth insight into their organization’s ability to produce the products envisioned in the statement of objectives.

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