Management of Process Quality | History of Quality Control

Sat, 07/23/2011 - 10:16 -- Umar Farooq

The Management of Process Quality category examines systematic processes the company uses to pursue ever-higher quality and company operational performance. The main elements of process management are examined including:

  • Research and Development
  • Design
  • Management of Process Quality for all work units and suppliers
  • Systematic quality improvement
  • Quality assessment

The traditional approach to quality control was inspect  the final product, and this approach is still applies in many firms. But the new approach includes methods and techniques that are more advance and effective than the traditional approach (final inspection).

A Brief History of Quality Control

The concept of quality control is not a new thing many people in past some have practiced this concept in their own style. Some are as under:

Hammurabi “Ruler of Babylonia”

In 3000 B.C the ruler of Babylonia Hammurabi give order that if “The mason who builds a house or bridge which falls down and kill the inmate shall be put to death".  This law shows concern for quality in ancient time.

Egyptian Pyramids

The concept of process control may have begun with Egyptian Pyramids. Because someone must appreciate the excavation and dressing of stones designed.

Industrial Revolution

The Era of Industrial Revolution and the resulting factory system, quality and process control began to take on some characteristics

  • Specializing Labor
  • Mass production
  • Involvement of inspection

F.W Tylor (Principles of Scientific Management)

  • After the publication of the F.W Tylor book Principles of Scientific Management. This work had a profound effect on management thought and practice. He suggested eight functional bosses for shop floor, and one should be to assign the task to inspection.
  • Statistical Quality Control for today’s TQM had beginning in the mid of 1920s at the Western Electric Plant of the Bell System by Shewhart, he design SQC for Zero defect and Mass Production of Telephone sets and exchange.
  • In 1931 he published he published his book Economic Control of Quality of Manufactured Product. This book provides a precise definition of SQC and quality control for evaluating production and improving quality.

Product Inspection V/S Process Control

Don’t inspect the product, inspect the process” and “you can’t inspect it in, you have got to build it in'".

Controlling the output of the system after the fact was historical action and nothing could be done to correct the variation after it had already occurred, and this is called feedback control. In this system we cannot control the defect because it has already done. So, we might try to not repeat the action. Especially in Mass production this approach is totally failed because when a manufacturer produce the product in a large volume and then the Inspection Department find a defect or variation, they can do nothing to control the defect in the same product. So, we need a system, which prevent defect and variations before it occur. And this is better system that will improve the process. And this is the idea behind process control.

What is the Process and when it begins?

So, we can say that the process might begin with the concept of the product idea and extend through the life cycle of the product to ultimate maturity and phase out.  Key business objectives and organization success are dependent on cross-functional processes. These processes should be change with the change of environment. An optimize process requires the application of tools and methods in all activities, not just manufacturing.

Barriers to Effective Process Control

There are two main barriers

  • Influence over volume of output rather than quality of output (A mistaken belief that more units of output means lower unit cost.
  • QCS measures products or services against a set of internal conformance specifications that may or may not relate to customer satisfaction

Service Industry

In service industry (intangible) is cannot measure the actual service because it is not physically occur.  We can measure variation from the output of the service. Like a Financial Analyst does not have a physical product but skills and techniques, if the best utilize his skills, can say that it is zero defect.

Inspection to Process Control - Quality Process Control Management

Past & Present

  • In the past the inspection was to see the defect of employees
  • But now inspection turned to a diagnostic role.

Main Objective

The main objective is not to discover the defects or variation but rather to remove causes and defects and variation.

Problem Solving

With pointing out defect we remove the cause of it, so it become a problem solving process.