What the “Blog Boom” means to us… Because quality always matters

ASQ’s Quality Progress July issue discusses the “Blog Bloom” and incorporates feedback from a few of the Influential Voices in the industry.

I’m delighted to say that I’ve been an Influential Voice from the start.  It’s been a truly rewarding experience, and I’m excited to be included in this issue.

In the QP article, I discuss my role as an ASQ Influential Voice blogger and incorporate the PDCA cycle where managing your online presence is concerned.  I’ll actually be discussing this topic in more detail through upcoming webinars and workshops scheduled through HCC’s Institute for Corporate & Continuing Education.

One thing I didn’t discuss is the impact on the industry I believe we have had through this blog. The significance is worth a mention…

Tips on quality from Bentley

We recently discovered a video discussing quality control at a Bentley Mulsanne factory.  As a 3rd party quality assurance and engineering firm, we do a significant amount of work in the automotive industry.  From TS 16949 audits to product inspections, it’s an industry we know places value on quality.

Of course, Bentley is synonymous with quality, representing to many the highest of automotive luxury. For Bentley, “the attention to detail is what defines a valued, quality product.”

“Spec check”

When the cars in this video come off the line, they make sure everything matches the specification.  Non-conformances are flagged and logged.  This can take up to an hour and half.  During another process check, anything flagged is taken care of.

From a previous post:

Inspection Plan Development
A good plan is only as good as its foundation, so a comprehensive and detailed product specification is critical to the success of the overall strategy.  Pro QC often assists clients with this documentation creation and also uses it internally to direct engineers on-site.  A good plan incorporates anything that will affect the salability and performance of the product.

Remembering Philip B. Crosby… “Quality is free”

June 18th would have been Philip B. Crosby’s birthday. He lived through 2001 and is internationally recognized for his ideas on quality management practices.

Crosby was an engineer at heart. As a quality engineer developing the Pershing Missile, he conceptualized the idea of Zero Defects.

Quality is Free likely sits on the bookshelves of many across the world.  Although it was originally published in 1979, it remains relevant and inspiring in today’s global marketplace as well.

Crosby’s response to the quality crisis was the principle of “doing it right the first time” (DIRFT). He also included four major principles:

Social Accountability – SA8000 2008-2014 Comparison

Every five years SAI revises the SA8000 standard in order to ensure its continued relevance and adoptability. This process is conducted in accordance with the ISEAL Code of Good Practice for Setting Social and Environmental Standards (the Code).

Social Accountability International recently discussed this process and offered a side-by-side comparison (2008-2014) for general review.

Aside from general and minor verbiage changes, other observations include:

  • The term “company” and “employer” has been replaced by “organization” in many areas.
  • The Guidance Document is now available for download rather than previously requiring a  “small fee.”
  • An “Introduction” referencing “Management System” and “Intent/Scope” replaces “Purpose and Scope” as the first item listed in the Contents.
  • Night hours are no longer excluded in regards to hiring young workers.

Closing out World Trade Month

“World Trade Month in May stems from World Trade Week, which was established as a way to promote local businesses. It has since grown into a month-long initiative to highlight US trade relationships and local and national trade events. As the WTCDC, part of the mission is to facilitate and enhance the exchange of goods and services in the international marketplace. Through events, the building fosters international dialogue and raises public awareness of the economic benefits that can be realized through trade.” 

The WTO issued a press release in April regarding world trade expectations in 2014.  The gist:

World trade is expected to grow by a modest 4.7% in 2014 and at a slightly faster rate of 5.3% in 2015. 

Other interesting insights include:

  • The WTO’s forecast of 4.7% growth in world merchandise trade for 2014 is below the average rate of 5.3% for the last 20 years (1993–2013) and also below the pre-crisis average rate of 6.0% for 1990–2008. The average rate of trade expansion in the three years since 2010 is 3.42%. Forecasts for 2014 and 2015, if correct, would raise the average to 4%, but this rate is insufficient to narrow the existing gap.
  • World merchandise trade is expected to post a 4.7% increase in 2014, with developed economies growing 3.6% and developing economies and the CIS advancing 6.4%. We expect that exports from Asia will grow faster than those from any other region (6.9%). Asia should be followed by North America (4.6%), South and Central America (4.4%), Europe (3.3%), and Other regions (3.1%), an aggregate that includes Africa, CIS and Middle East.

Two interesting graphical data representations include: