Like there was mentioned in previous articles process is the group of activities that transform resources into results that satisfy the customer. The basic process improvement method is PDSA cycle: Plan-Do-Study-Act. There are two interpretation of this.
PDSA cycle - one interpretation:
- Plan improvement work
- Perform whose work
- Study its result
- If we gain some knowledge about waste, harmful side effects or another undesirable situation, we can do some actions to eliminate those.
PDSA cycle - second implementation
- Establish principal cause of the problem based on data. If the problem is big, we have to divide it into small pieces. To find the root cause we can use some tools from Seven Improvement Tools.
- An improvement team define steps for fixing problem. They have make everybody involved and agreed for proposed improvements.
- Check the results of steps that were made in point 2 (e.g. using Pareto diagram). In this step we have to check if improvement is going in right direction and if reach the expected level.
- If improvement process was successful we have to gain information how to avoid problem in feature. Moreover in this step we should analyse the improvement process itself and improve the improvement process.
To visualize quality improvement work we can use quality storyboard. This board should contain record of improvement team work, brief analyse the current situation and so on. Bergman present seven steps in creating and maintain quality storyboard:
- Plan and problem definition - explanation of problem, why the problem is important and schedule
- Data - data tha helps understand significant/important scect of the problem
- Analysis - analyse of the problem, with tools such cause-and-effect diagrams, control chart....
- Action - what action is taken based on analysis
- Study - check what went good, what went bad and why
- Act/Standardisation - new standards procedures are introduced
- Plans for the future - as a result of solving pproblems new problems was found.
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