Total Quality Management Tools and Techniques

Total Quality Management tools and techniques are formulated within the past more than 60 years. These tools and techniques are used to identify the potential problems, frequency of their occurrences, and method to control these problems and to adopt world best class practices.

From results of different surveys conducted, it is estimated that more than 100 TQM tools are being used so far. But in different books, different tools are described. This article describes mostly used tools used under the umbrella of TQM. Following are the most commonly used tools and techniques:

  1. Benchmarking is method of comparing company's practices with the practices of best in class organization in the areas of quality, productivity, Human Resources and cost etc.
  2. Six Sigma is business strategy to achieve excellence by applying different statistical, TQM and Project Management tools.
  3. Lean Manufacturingis way of manufacturing that increases speed and reduces unnecessary wastes.
  4. Lean Six Sigma is combination of Six Sigma and Lean Manufacturing concept to reduce errors and increase productivity side by side.
  5. Total productive Maintenance (TPM) is a new way of carrying maintenance activities and invented by Japanese.
  6. Brainstorming is method of looking for problem solution by a group of people.
  7. Quality Management System ( ISO 9001 ) is set of standards for Quality Management system for any organization by International Organization for Standardization (ISO).
  8. Environmental Management System ( ISO 14001 ) is standard given by ISO to facilitate organization to reduce their wastes that are harmful for the environment.
  9. Laboratory management System ( ISO/IEC 17025 ) is a standard for Laboratories for their accreditation.
  10. Social Accountability System (ISO/TS 8000-110:2008 ) is a standard developed in the light of International Labor Organization (ILO) and UN Human Rights Conventions, to protect human rights.
  11. Kaizen is a Japanese tool for small but incremental changes in daily business life.
  12. 5S is methodology for improvement in daily and business life in five steps.
  13. Business Process Re-engineering (BPR) is technique for improving effectiveness and efficiency of business processes.
  14. Quality Circles (QC) is group of people, who identify problems and give their solution for improvement in daily life and business.
  15. Occupational Safety & Health System (OHSAS 18001)
  16. Focus Groups
  17. Pie Chart and Bar Graph
  18. Histogram
  19. Run Chart
  20. Pareto Analysis
  21. Force Field Analysis
  22. Cause & Effect/Fish Bone/Ishikawa Diagram
  23. Affinity Diagram
  24. House of Quality/Quality Function Deployment (QFD)
  25. Triz
  26. Theory of Constraints
  27. Tree Diagram
  28. Flow Charts/Flow Diagram
  29. Scatter Diagram
  30. Plan Do Check Act (PDCA)
  31. X bar Chart
  32. R Charts
  33. P Charts
  34. nP Charts
  35. PI Chart
  36. Force Field Analysis
  37. Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award
  38. Design of Experiment
  39. Analysis of Variance
  40. European Quality Award
  41. Japan's Deming Prize

Almost all the TQM tools are being used effectively in manufacturing industry, maintenance organizations and Service organizations. Some tools have become an integral part of big philosophies like Six Sigma, Total Productive Maintenance and Lean Manufacturing etc. But one thing must be remembered that every tool should be selected and applied carefully to achieve best results from it.

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