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Thursday, 25 January 2007 21:08

Quality Assurance

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Quality Assurance covers all activities from design, development, production, installation, servicing and documentation. It introduced the sayings "fit for purpose" and "do it right the first time". It includes the regulation of the quality of raw materials, assemblies, products and components; services related to production; and management, production, and inspection processes. One of the most widely used paradigms for QA management is the PDCA (Plan-Do-Check-Act) approach, also known as the Shewhart cycle. The main goal of QA is to ensure that the product fulfills or exceeds customer expectations. PDCA (also known as the Deming Cycle, Shewhart cycle, or Deming Wheel) is an iterative four-step quality control strategy.

 

  • PLAN - Establish the objectives and processes necessary to deliver results in accordance with the specifications.
  • DO - Implement the processes.
  • CHECK - Monitor and evaluate the processes and results against objectives and specifications and report the outcome.
  • ACT - apply actions to the outcome for necessary improvement. This means reviewing all steps (Plan, Do, Check, Act) and modifying the process to improve it before its next implementation.

 

Quality assurance is a managerial function that addresses all the planned and systematic activities implemented within the quality system to provide confidence that the project will satisfy the relevant quality standards. As defined by the PMBOK, quality assurance is fundamentally a reactive process. The following issues and concepts fall under quality assurance:

  • Quality Audits - The process of reviewing specific data at key points of the project’s life cycle. The purpose of formative quality evaluation is to determine how the project is proceeding, and make necessary corrections.
  • Process Analysis - Process improvement is the activity of elevating the performance of a process, especially that of a business process with regard to its goal. Process improvement can take the form of an improvement project, or that of a process. Such a process of continuous improvement is part of organization's management processes (as opposed to business processes and support processes). According to the PMBOK, Process analysis follows the steps outlined in the process improvement plan to identify needed improvements.

 

When the project manager and the project team want to incorporate changes into the project the quality management plan may require formal change requests and management approval. The value and importance of the change should be evident so the improvement to quality is approved and folded into the project.

 

Read 6245 times Last modified on Thursday, 10 December 2009 22:00

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