Quality Assurance Supports Process Improvement by showing us when the improvement has occurred. This is typically done through measuring the existing process; making the change and then measuring the results of the new process. In last week’s blog we discussed examples of Process Improvement. Now we need to ensure that the Improvement has actually occurred.
The initial steps to tracking improvement are as follows:
- Identify the process we want to improve
- Identify the aspect of that process that needs to be improved
- Identify a characteristic that will show if the improvement has taken place after the change
- Find or create a measurement that will show change occurring in the characteristic
- Measure the characteristic under the current process for a sufficient length of time to get a valid result
- Make the change
- Measure the characteristic under the new process for a sufficient length of time to get a valid result
The above steps are not necessarily easy and will depend on what already exists in the place you are working. In order to do the first three steps you need to have processes in place or be able to identify them and their characteristics. The fourth step requires working out a measurement that validly checks the aspect that is planned for improvement. We then need to wait for while the measurement is taken with the current process. The change has to be implemented and used in the process without any modifications in order to allow us to make valid measurements of the impact of the change.
Once all this is done, then we are in a position to measure the difference and decide on whether the process was actually improved. Quality assurance supports all of this by defining the necessary measurements, gathering the statistics and analyzing the results. NVP Software Solutions can complete all of the above steps for you.