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Quality Management


Quality organizations in every industry are being pressed to deliver to increasingly higher quality standards while also contributing to stronger overall organizational performance. In addition, quality organizations are changing due to customer demands for:

  • Exceptional product quality
  • Increased regulations
  • Rigorous audits
  • Internal productivity goals
Given the challenging environment, these organizations tend to rely on benchmarking to not only identify how to optimize their organizations and begin initiatives such as Six Sigma, but also chart their path forward by identifying key milestones. Those organizations that have successfully instituted mature initiatives are further challenged to manage continuous process and performance improvement.

Our Role in Generating Value from Strategic Alliances and Partnerships

Best Practices, LLC’s Research & Consulting service is geared to support organizations seeking to identify and achieve optimal performance. Our quantitative research highlights organizational goals, while our qualitative research enables executives to develop a road map to achieve these performance targets. We address all areas of Alliances and Partnerships, including:

Our Role in Driving Quality

Rather than focusing on promoting Six Sigma training tactics, our focus is on providing the ability to learn from those companies that successfully manage and implement their quality organizations and initiatives. From product improvement to process improvement, our capabilities cover the breadth of the quality spectrum. Areas of expertise include:

  • Creating and sustaining momentum for quality initiatives
  • Optimizing quality organization resources
  • Mitigating and managing organizational risk
  • Applying quality methods to the manufacturing function and beyond
  • Driving organizational quality through employee engagement
Best Practices, LLC has developed an integrated set of tools and techniques including: proprietary databases, surveys, lessons-learned interviews, site visits, multi-industry assessments, insightful decision-support tools, and unparalleled access to high-level contacts at industry-leading organizations across the globe. The results are best practice research, analysis, competitiveness review and insight that enable organizations to evaluate their total productivity and improve: growth, cost position, process design, and overall operating effectiveness.
Over the years, Best Practices, LLC has developed expertise across a broad spectrum of quality areas. Specific research topics include:
  • Quality Trends: Structure, Certification, and External Relationships
  • Quality Education: Effective Intra-company Training Tactic
  • Technical Documentation: Producing Quality Documents and Measuring Value
  • Organizing for International Product Development and Deployment
  • Quality & Compliance: Optimizing Organizational Structures
  • Quality Trends: Structure, Certification, and External Relationships
  • Benchmarking Project Management: Performance Measurement, Processes and Tools
  • Capturing the Voice of the Customer: Processes, Practices and Performance
  • Business Process Management: Identification, Documentation & Organization
  • Supply Chain & the Impact of Quality Initiatives
  • Building Six Sigma Excellence: Case Study of General Electric
  • Driving Productivity and Minimizing Rework in the Quality Control Laboratory
  • The Quality Function: Structures, Staffing, and Execution
  • Pharmaceutical Manufacturing: Cost, Staffing & Utilization Metrics
  • Improving the Quality Function: Driving Organizational Impact & Efficiency
  • Six Sigma and the Balanced Scorecard
  • Portfolio Optimization
  • Lean Six Sigma and TQM: Beyond Manufacturing
  • Quality and Cost Cutting Breakthroughs: Case Studies in Operational Excellence
  • Trends in Lean, Six Sigma & Process Excellence
These research initiatives include detailed case studies on topics such as:
  • Lean Sigma Operating System (ACE), Lean Sigma Training, Lean Sigma Projects, Global Sourcing
  • Stage-gate process for Project Selection
  • Six Sigma to Increase Sales Force Effectivenes
  • SCOR Level Metrics, Supply Chain Transformation
  • Corporate Six Sigma Deployment (4 year case study), Benchmarking, & DMAIC, Hoshin Planning, MBF, & Cascaded Scorecards,
  • Design of Experiments Inform Marketing & Call Center Sales)
  • Hosin Plan, MBF, Scorecard, Lean Six Sigma Training, Operating System
  • Quality and Internal Audit - Leadership Development/Rotational Programs and Development, Succession Planning
  • Process Excellence Architecture, Plant Audit, Pull due to Supply Chain Success
  • Six Sigma Deployment and Training (multi-year perspective)
  • Six Sigma Concepts and Motorola Deployment
  • Variation Based Metrics, Analysis and Scorecards
  • SOX and Process Excellence: Quality & Finance
  • Six Sigma in the Services and Call Center Industries
  • Beyond Six Sigma

Improving the Quality Function: Driving Organizational Impact & Efficiency

Most organizations face the challenge of successfully configuring their Quality organizations to deliver optimal performance, impact and efficiency in today's market. Increasing regulations and pressure for organizational cost reduction further compound this issue. Companies across various industries can use information uncovered in this study to benchmark and improve their performance in critical quality areas such as:
  • Organizational Size and Management Structure- assesses size, structure, scope of service and roles & responsibilities of the Quality organization. Metrics covered include: organizational effectiveness ratings, corporate and non-corporate quality budgets, staffing levels (aggregate as well as segmented by manufacturing sites and total products).
  • Risk Measurement and Management- addresses topics such as Quality audits and self-assessments as well as critical-to-quality factors unearthed through analyzing voice of the customer. This section includes executive insights on effectively developing and managing a formalized risk management process. Metrics include: combinations of regulatory/certification audits with quality audits, frequency of site and vendor audits and product recall/failure rates.
  • Organizational Impact, Value and Performance- assesses financial impact of the Quality organization as well as performance management, measurement and value communication. Metrics include: percent of companies utilizing various quality tools and methods, quality cost savings and value communication tactic effectiveness ratings
  • Lessons Learned- highlights the key challenges and insights uncovered by executives at benchmarked quality organizations.

The Quality Function: Structure, Staffing, and Execution

One client was facing extraordinary attention from regulators, inspectors, stock analysts, and shareholders due to perceived and real shortcomings in the company's manufacturing quality. Our customer was looking for a mechanism to research and understand how the quality function was organized and staffed at top pharma companies. Issues such as structure, staffing levels at corporate and site, span of control, career path planning and retention, education levels and depth of experience in its quality people were of interest. 

For this engagement, our research team conducted detailed surveys of top pharma companies to understand the exact staffing levels, distribution, education backgrounds and tenure in the quality role. Study participants also were interviewed to understand the organizational structure, assignment of responsibilities, lessons learned, and top influencers in maintaining a world-class quality system. Our research presented not only how our client stood with respect to others on the performance metrics, but also identified scores of detailed best practices in quality management.

This study was conducted on behalf of a global pharmaceutical company. Six highly regarded companies participated as benchmark partners. With our insights in hand, our client was well positioned to optimize its quality structure and organization, focus efforts on career development and retention of quality personnel, and fine-tune hiring and training efforts. In turn, our research has a direct bearing on product quality, expense management, and reputation enhancement.

Lean, Six Sigma & TQM Project Success: Recent Case Studies and Benchmarks

Improve a process and generate more savings or revenue by learning how over 30 companies applied lean, six sigma and total quality management (TQM) methods and the results of these efforts. So you want to improve a process and generate more savings or revenue? This Best Practices Benchmarking Report offers a place to start by showcasing how over 30 companies applied lean, six sigma and total quality management (TQM) methods and the results of these efforts. In addition, the report contains over 20 slides illustrating and explaining results from a recent survey of 84 companies on recent projects using lean, six sigma and other productivity approaches.

Trends in Lean, Six Sigma & Process Excellence--Meeting Proceedings

At the August 2005 Global Benchmarking Council conference on "Trends in Lean, Six Sigma & Process Excellence: From Early Adopters to Agile Innovators," members, speakers and invited guests discussed how to restore balance in their Six Sigma deployment systems. This included debate about “tools for tools sake,” the cult of Six Sigma, Black Belt retention, and other issues critical to sustained success.


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Christopher Bogan,
President and CEO

Phone: (919) 767- 9164

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Added to Cart White Paper:Measuring and Communicating Organizational Value for the Quality Function (ID WP-40)

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