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FEBRUARY 2021 I PCB007 MAGAZINE 93 Unlike traditional internal continuous im- provement tools and activities, benchmarking is unique and occurs within the organization, within the industry, or entirely outside the in- dustry. Continuous improvement projects culmi- nate with either adopting, adapting, or aban- doning the proposed solution: • Adopting accepts and implements the entire solution • Adapting cherry-picks select attributes of the solution • Abandoning rejects the solution in its entirety Ideally, continuous improvement solu- tions are simple, quick, and effective. Lastly, knowledge management comes into play. e team must formally document the project and knowledge learned. An A3 report format or equivalent should be used. Conclusion Quality and continuous improvement ac- tivities share a long and impressive histo- ry. e cost of poor quality and the need for high reliability are the catalysts driving con- tinuous improvement today. Continuous im- provement requires continuous change. It is paramount that organizational leaders and managers develop a culture of continuous improvement. Leadership without manage- ment is mediocracy; management without leadership is disastrous. All employees must realize their primary function is to "add val- ue and solve problems." Quality manage- ment systems (QMS) contain an element of continuous improvement and share com- mon tools and activities. Having an excellent foundational understanding and application- al knowledge of these tools and activities is crucial. Human resources are the most im- portant resources of all, and priority needs to be set to develop their talents. PCB007 References 1. "Theory C: The Near Future of Quality Man- agement," Kemenade, E. (2014), The TQM Journal, 26(6), 650-657. 2. American Society for Quality (n.d.). History of Quality [Quality topics A to Z]. Retrieved from http:// asq.org/learn-about-quality/history-of-quality/over- view/overview.html. 3. Introduction to Statistical Quality Control (7 th ed.), Montgomery, D. (2013). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons. 4. "Forgotten Contributions to Scientific Manage- ment: Work and Ideas of Karol Adamiecki," Debicki, B. (2015), Journal of Management History, 21(1), 40-67. 5. The Handbook for Quality Management 2nd Ed., Pyzdek, T. & Keller, P. (2013). United States: Mc- Graw-Hill Companies. 6. Get it Right. A Strategic Guide to Quality Sys- tems, Imler, K. (2006). Milwaukie, WI: ASQ Press. 7. "Cost of Quality: Not Only Failure Costs," Buth- mann A. (2017). Retrieved from https://www.isixsig- ma.com/implementation/financial-analysis/cost- quality-not-only-failure-costs. 8. Acceptability of Printed Boards (Standard No. IPC-A-600J), Association for Connecting Electron- ics (2016), Bannockburn, IL: IPC. 9. Acceptability of Electronic Assemblies (Stan- dard No. IPC-A-610F), Association for Connecting Electronics (2014), Bannockburn, IL: IPC. 10. Collective Genius: The Art and Practice of Leading Innovation, Hill, L., Brandeau, G., Truelove E. and Lineback, K. (2014). Boston, MA: Harvard Business Review Press. Patrick Valentine is the Technical and Lean Six Sigma Manager for Uyemura USA. As part of his responsibilities, he teaches Lean Six Sigma green belt and black belt courses. He has a PhD in Quality Systems Management from New England College of Business, Six Sigma Master Black Belt certification from Arizona State University, and ASQ certifications as a Six Sigma Black Belt and Reliability Engineer.

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