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Quality Management Overview

It is important to know at the onset of the project on what acceptable rate the quality is and how it will be measured on the project. This process of performing Quality Management process helps avoid many issues at a later stage of the project.

Definition Of Quality

The degree to which the project fulfills the requirements is defined as Quality. A project cannot achieve quality if all of the stated and unstated requirements are defined in the project scope statement.

Definition Of Quality Management

The process of creating and following policies and procedures to ensure that a project meets the defined needs it was intended to meet from the customers perspective is termed as Quality Management. Quality Management process ensures no deviations occur from project requirements. Plan Quality, Perform Quality Assurance and Perform Quality Control are a part of Quality Management process.

Quality Theorists

A few important quality theorists include:

Philip Crosby: Phil Crosby propagated that quality is conformance to requirements. The concepts of cost of poor quality, prevention over inspection and zero defects were also popularized by him.

Joseph Juran: Joseph Juran defined quality as fitness for use and advocated involvement of top management to address quality issues. The 80/20 principle developed by Vilfredo Pareto was propagated by Joseph Juran.

W. Edwards Deming: The 14 points to quality management and Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle were propagated by Dr. W. Edwards Deming.

Quality Related PMI Facts

  • Improvement recommendations to the standards, policies and procedures should be made by the project managers. It is observed that they are always welcomed by the management.

  • Changes to any of the project constraints should also lead to a Quality check by project manager and his team

  • An activity or a work package should be checked for quality as it gets completed

  • Improving quality is one of the critical professional responsibilities of the project manager. The metrics to measure quality should be determined by the project manager before the project work begins

  • A plan to continually improve processes should be put in place by the project manager

  • Authorized approaches and processes to be followed by the project manager

  • A few of the quality activities can be done by a quality assurance or quality control department

Gold Plating

Gold plating is all about giving the customer extra value of the product (such as more functionality, higher-quality parts, more scope than required, higher performance). Some organizations do have the policy that promotes adding value to customers and going beyond to fulfill their requests, it is not recommended by advanced quality thinkers and also PMI. The teams impression of what is valued by the customer and what the customer does not want is often termed as Gold Plating. Most projects have difficulty in achieving the objectives of the project, gold plating can be done on certain projects and may not be done on certain others. This creates a gap in customers expectations and hence gold plating is not recommended.

Prevention Over Inspection

Quality must be planned in and not inspected. This is a frequent concept on the examination.

Marginal Analysis

The point where the benefits (revenue) that is to be received from improving quality equals the incremental cost to achieve that quality is termed as Marginal Analysis.

Continuous Improvement (OR Kaizen)

In the PMP exam, Continuous Improvement and Kaizen mean the same. Continuously looking for small improvements in the process is termed as Continuous Improvement. Kaizen is a Japanese word where Kai means Change and Zen means for the better.

Just In Time (JIT)

The concept of JIT involves having the suppliers deliver raw materials just when they are needed, thus reducing inventory to close to zero. JIT has supplemented reduction in high inventory costs which is unnecessary.

Total Quality Management (TQM)

This philosophy encourages companies and their employees to focus on finding ways to continuously improve the quality of their products and their business practices at every level of the organization.

Responsibility For Quality

The ultimate responsibility of the product or project quality lies with the project manager. However, the entire organization has responsibility relating to quality.

Impact Of Poor Quality

Poor quality leads to:

  • Increased costs

  • Low morale

  • Low customer satisfaction

  • Increased risk

  • Rework

  • Schedule delays

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