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What is Quality … ? (Very interesting question)

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  • #43039

    Pai
    Participant

    I happened to attend an interview for a BB role, yes, I am certified, the interviewer asked me a very simple question.
    What is quality..?
    I provided him the answer…, infact the answer was lenthy took a few minutes but gave him all information he wanted right form its definition to six sigma tools and other quality processes, I cleared the interview but, I wish to know if this question is posed to some one….
    Can we define a standard answer for this question…
    What is Quality ?

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    #136197

    TwoCents
    Member

    The opposite of quantity?
    Sorry, couldn’t help myself.

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    #136201

    BTDT
    Participant

    TwoCents:When a CFO told me they were a “Quality” organization, I asked him if it was “high” or “low”.Cheers, BTDT

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    #136202

    TwoCents
    Member

    Hilarious!  Funny how we assume…
    Nice pic, by the way.  I’m not Canadian, but it’ll work!

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    #136207

    Anonymous
    Participant

    Doing the right thing the right way and getting it right on the first attempt while utilizing the minimum amount of resources (human & material) in order to do so.
    When this is repeated correctly for every unit produced or transaction processed then you have achieved quality performance.

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    #136208

    Griswold
    Participant

    If you just add something about the customer to that definition, I think it will be complete.  Nice job.

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    #136210

    Tierradentro
    Participant

    from the quality glossary on http://www.asq.org…
    Quality: A subjective term for which each person has his or her own definition. In technical usage, quality can have two meanings: 1. the characteristics of a product or service that bear on its ability to satisfy stated or implied needs. 2. a product or service free of deficiencies.
    Regards,
    John

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    #136211

    Lorax
    Participant

    I’ll go with those. They are a bit more eloquent than the “fitness for use” taught many moons ago.
    Lorax

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    #136218

    Almudena
    Participant

    Rajesh,
    Quality is a loss to the society after a product is shipped, because it does not meet customer expectations, product  specifications  and/or fitness for use.
    I hope it helps.
    Best Regards,
    Almudena
     

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    #136219

    Chicagoan
    Participant

    I like the Cosby’s definition best, according to him : Quality is adherence to customer requirements.
     

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    #136223

    Pai
    Participant

    My reply to this question was:
    Quality is all about Meeting Customers Needs and then exceeding customers Needs. and then Meeting customers expectations and exceeding customers expectations leading to a profit to both the customer and the organization….
     Let me know your thoughts..

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    #136245

    Mr IAM
    Participant

    Interesting to have profit in the definition.  So, you cannot supply a quality product or service unless you do so profitably? 
    I’m not sure I agree with that – it takes focus off of the customer and puts the focus on the supplier.  It will be interesting to see what some others think but I think profit should be left out of the definition of quality.

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    #136253

    KKN
    Participant

    Quality is a measure of how well you are meeting customers expectations (including all sub-groups of the customer) each time you interact with them. (my definition). Given that I would say that “Profitable for Customer” would be in (if CFO says “you stink” as a supplier, the quality they are talking about is probably in either cost or billing, not widget to spec)The internal profitability part doesn’t fall into my definition, so I wouldn’t put it in. I agree with MR Iam, to takes the focus off of the customer.

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    #136254

    Velasquez
    Participant

    It is necessary to make a profit on the product produced. Otherwise you won’t be in business for long, no matter how great the product is. The entire point of a business is to make money by providing customers with a product that they feel was value for money.

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    #136261

    TwoCents
    Member

    I’m very sorry to say this…and I know it’s going to be unpopular, but IMO, this thread is a complete waste of time.  Why debate such a thing?  Quality is a conceptual term, and therefore, despite agreeing on the fundamental concept, everyone will have a different take on what the details are.
    Why do you have to have a “standard answer for this question”?
    Perhaps you gave your perspective employer exactly what he wanted…a discussion of what the term “quality” means to you!  I might be wrong, but I would be shocked if he would have been terribly impressed if you regurgitated definition that you read off of the ASQ website, this forum, or anywhere else.  I know I wouldn’t have been.
    Questions like that get asked in interviews, IMO, because employers want to know what you think…not what you can spew from the “quality textbook”.
    No offense intended here, Rajesh, because you probably (assuming you know what you’re talking about) gave him a good answer…because there is no “right answer”…and I don’t think there should be.
    Besides…does this forum have a clear line to Webster or something?  Cuz if it does, I’ve got a few other definitions I’d like to get worked in… ;)

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    #136263

    CB
    Participant

    Just remember  QUALITY IS EVERYTHING

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    #136266

    Vinay
    Member

    Meeting (conformance to customer’s expectations) and if possible exceeding customer’s expectations.
     

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    #136269

    V.Sankar
    Member

    qlty can be defined only by the customer and it will change its definition each and every min.
    according to me, the delightness of the customer is tee quality.

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    #136271

    anahana
    Participant

    Quality is conformance to specifications.

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    #136272

    Anand
    Participant

    Quality is Customer’s Satisfaction. Even if one speaks about Specifications – where did the specifications come from – The customer only. So Quality is customer’s satisfaction.

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    #136274

    Nilanjan Sarangi
    Participant

    I came across this definition and feel it gives a good perspective:
    ” quality is the extent of fulfilement of the customer’s expressed, latent or anticipated need”
    I agree with many of you that, quality is a philosphy, rather than a definition. To this extent, I feel Kano’s model is a very good prism to look at this “abstract” word

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    #136275

    Anonymous
    Guest

    Rajesh,
    I want to tell you a true story. A well-known company in the UK wanted to design a new product, so they decided to base it only on what customers wanted. (Some people claimed they wanted to be a market led company.)
    After investing a huge amount of money on the product, development, testing, and installing a very nice single flow line – to the tune of about $10,000,000 they found no-one wanted to buy the product.
    Why: because a competitor had brought out a better product a few weeks before, with features no one anticipated.
    Yes, design engineers are also ‘customers’ – a fact long recognised by Toyota.
    Now to answer your question – what is quality.
    “Quality minimises the loss to society.” Gen-ichi Taguchi
    Regards,
    Andy 

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    #136276

    anahana
    Participant

    Internal customers can have something like specification limits, it is not restricted to external customers.

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    #136286

    EdG
    Participant

    That is kind of an abstract question because it has so many different meanings.  It is all dependent upon the beholder, what quality is.   I do like the reference to the Kano Model as an interpretation of how well quality is being delivered.  Merriam-Webster has nine different definitions, of which the one that is probably related to this discussion is:
    2 a : degree of excellence : GRADE b : superiority in kind
     
    This is like walking up to someone on the street and asking, “What is love?”  You can reference many different measures that represent something to someone, but establishing one definition is actually quite difficult.  For reference pruposes, M-W has twenty-four different definitions for love.

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    #136288

    Eugene Jacquescoley
    Participant

    Standardizing the term “quality” is a very interesting concept. Consequently, “quality” has many translations in the business environment. In terms of SixSigma and quality improvement; it is my belief that “quality” in this particular arena has several implications. The Principles of Continuous Quality Improvement or (CQI): appears to embrace a commanilty of the basic shift from-from focus on the end product or service to process. This is where SixSigma is unique.
    Moreover, when standards are met, new goals are set to improve standards. Incidentally, when standarts are not met, action plans are identified and carried out to make improvements (Ohio State University, 2000; Harvard University 2005).

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    #136291

    Kraft
    Participant

    Quality is what your customer says it is.

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    #136307

    Venugopal Reddy Bireddy
    Member

    Quality of organisation is nothing but “its ability to satisfiy customer continiously, effectively and efficiently”.

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    #136308

    wanz
    Member

    Quality is degress to wish a product or service meets or exceeds customer’s requirements and expectations.
    That’s it.

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    #147141

    bhaskar show
    Participant

    To me achieving Quality is to make my customer satisfied anyhow. I will give whatever or whenever or wherever my customer demands to my best level.

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    #147157

    Marlon Brando
    Participant

    Not  Enough?As  Customer  can  be  in  some cases :Naive (and  he  may even  don’t  know  how  to  use your  product in  a proper manner?/)??  

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    #154258

    Osama Daoud
    Participant

    Giving a customer a value for his money

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    #154259

    Allthingsidiot O
    Participant

    Excellent  Definition

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    #154301

    Chamonixstu
    Participant

    Defining quality is exceptionally difficult but in my experience it is rather less difficult to understand what quiality isn’t.
    As ‘Quality’ is more of a customer perception it is somewhat difficult to put measures against it as customer perception is always changing.
    However, get the customer to define what, to him, is not quality and the measures to prevent him receiving this become a little easier to understand and implement.
    This is my view on the subject but I do appreciate you may have a different perception.
    Cheers!
    Stu

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    #154310

    lukasls
    Participant

    I thought it was about Quality only…..we have other departments to care about profit and productivity….:)                                      Personally I like Kano’s degree of excellence as a quality definition. It is pure, short and clear.

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    #154311

    lukasls
    Participant

    I have a good one:
    quality is when the customer returns and the product does not.
    Cheers!

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    #154313

    Souvagya
    Member

    Simple definition of quality is “Fit for Use”

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    #154324

    jberillajr
    Participant

    The degree to which you perfectly meet the customers current and future needs

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    #154333

    Helper
    Participant

    Interesting….  I like the definition up to the point when the profit motive came into the picture.  By this explanation, I suspect that not for profit organizations or government agencies cannot produce quality.  Or if you are a patient at a hospital, how would you view quality?
    Many of the definitions in the above messages serve the definition well.  One I was trained to use is: Quality work is producing a product or service that conforms to customer wants, needs, and expectations as defined by “customer requirements.”  It means creating a product or a service that is “fit” for their use.
    Your thoughts?
     

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    #154496

    Sayyed
    Participant

    Quality is the function of loss….
    Remember Taguchi.
    Regards, – Neal
    ——————-

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    #154498

    Allthingsidiot O
    Participant

    Good Point

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    #154505

    Jose Barrero
    Participant

    Customers define quality; of products and services that meet their expectations at a cost that represents value.

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    #154508

    dave_jl
    Participant

    That is the best definition of quality I have seen.  I interview alot of applicants and one standard question is to define “excellent customer service”..the holy grail answer I am waiting for is “to routinely meet or exceed the anticipated and unanticipated needs of the customer” (that’s not mine but I can’t recall the origin)…doing that will satisfy the customer…doing it repeatedly (continuously) is quality!

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    #154512

    Raj Kumar J
    Participant

    According to the six sigma one of the right way of quality definitions Doing the right things & do the right thing always is quality
     
     

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    #154515

    tester
    Member

    OK .. I want it all, now, and free of charge!

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    #154518

    Allthingsidiot O
    Participant

    wHY?

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    #154613

    Jumbo
    Participant

    Quality is the response of Process, either good or bad. Process strategy directly affects product quality, thus the consumers wants and needs should be reflected throughout the process!

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    #154614

    Allthingsidiot O
    Participant

    Sometimes  the  Customer is  “stupid” and  does  not  know  his  own  requirements? 

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    #154631

    Mike Xie
    Participant

    A great story! Andy. I agree your design, marketing or service people are also your customers. One reason i guess is that your random samples (pontiential customers) sometimes are NOT able to spell out their needs and wants; and people really working on that may have much more in-depth knowledge about what they are doing — yet very often they have a narrow vision.
    Quality is the VALUE you ADD for your customers.
    Eg. if you go to the fake market in Shanghai and buy a cheap shirt, and you pay 50 RMB for it; meanwhile your friend pay 100 for the exactly same shirt in a department store, eventually, both shirts wear out at the same day (assume the frequence of usage same). What do you think? I would think I save 50 RMB that is the added value and you know what, I will go buy it again next time if there is no legal issue. If then you ask what’s the quality about it, you know what my answer would be.  
    Mike Xie
    Shanghai, China
     
     
      
     
     
     
     
     
     

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    #154635

    Sigma Singh
    Member

    Dear Mike –
    How would you define quality in case customer is equally concerned about the “Shopping Experience”
    Would it change then……

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    #154636

    Allthingsidiot O
    Participant

    Do  you  agree  with  me  that China  is  spoiling  the  image  of  “Quality”  world-wide?Through  producing  all  types  of  cheap “bad” products and  exporting  them  all  over  the  world?

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    #154638

    Sigma Singh
    Member

    ATI (O) – please take such questions elewhere. This forum is meant for relevent things

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    #154639

    Mike Xie
    Participant

    Hi..good point…”shopping” is just an example…I totally agree “experience” is a good thing for my friend who buys the shirt…he then would make an judgement on the extra 50 RMB…would this trade-of be worth enjoying that experience…if yes…he get value more than 50RMB(what qualtiy?)…if not, he gets less than 50 RMB(what quality?)…it seems we’re getting into both psychology and economics…
    My example might not be accurate…quality has different definitions in different minds…which is not black and white…which sometimes…doen’t make sense at all…if you look at those who are willing to pay millions to buy a car….which depreciates your book value but gives you unmeasuable “experience”
     
     

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    #154640

    Mike Xie
    Participant

    Thanks…administrator…but…it doesn’t embarrass me…unless Allthingsidiot (O)…you take it personally…
    My answer is denfinitely NO…how do you define “quality” in your mind…does quality only relate to elegant, high-price or high-class products?
    The point is…are you satisfied with the “cheap” products if they are good to use…why don’t you wait just a minute and think…why these cheap exists…let me tell you…that’s the demand and supply…the nature of economics determines there is a room for that kinds of products…
    ….although he’s raising an irrelevant issue…
     
     
     

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    #154641

    Allthingsidiot O
    Participant

    No .Disagree  completely.It  is  a  very  relevant issue.China  and  other  Asian  countries  are producing thousands of “low-quality” cheap products,spoiling  the  image  of  quality “world-wide”.I  insist on  my  statement,specially  when  I’m  tlaking  about  the  difinition  of Quality??

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    #154642

    Mike Xie
    Participant

    I agree you don’t agree…but my friend…”quality” itself is a relative measure….you first have your specification…then compare the product with your specification…”low quality” doen’t necessarily mean no quality at all…in fact….”low quality” is your specification here possibly because you can’t afford it or thanks to your life style…or nobody in this world would buy those things…All existence make sense… 
    Perhaps one day you’ll enjoy the cheap things from Asia…It’s all good to listen to different voices…
     

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    #154643

    accrington
    Participant

    Does (O) stand for Ostrich?

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    #154644

    Allthingsidiot O
    Participant

    Original ?

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    #154645

    Allthingsidiot O
    Participant

    No . disagree:Quality means CS,and nobody wants bad  products.So  it  is  not  a  relative  matter ,acceptable  specification  is  a  universal  term.A  car used in  Africa should  be  reliable in  a  similar  mode  to  a  car  used  in Canada or  India.Again please  stop  producing  “bad-quality”  products ….

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    #154646

    Mike Xie
    Participant

    I respect your input and understand you want to have good things…
    Look at the words you put forward:
    “A  car used in  Africa should  be  reliable in  a  similar  mode  to  a  car  used  in Canada or  India.”
    Absolutely right! But my dear friend, you made a wrong hypothesis. You assumed that African, American and Asian people would buy this same car…that might not be the case…
    An Africa consumer may buy a samll car like Corolla or another cheap one or low-quality one, but he/she is happy to drive it
    An Asian may buy a sedan, say Camry, he/she is also happy.
    An Amercian may buy a Luxus, again, I bet he/she’s happy. 
    Consumers have different needs and wants and therefore, they choose different categories…cheap, low-quality is one of the categories…
    Even I would like to and I have a power of stopping making so-called cheap products, most of your people may not agree with it, simply because they can’t live with consuming expensive goods all the time…
     
     
     
      
     
     
     
     
     

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    #154648

    accrington
    Participant

    Hardly. Xenophobia is nothing new.

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    #154654

    Whitehurst
    Participant

    Quality can be compared to Sex
    Everyone loves it
    CEO’s shy to talk about it
    Every one buys it
    Every ones in for it
    Some are new to it
    Some one wants to learn it
    and some consultants think hey are naturally born with it
     
    Regards
    joe
     

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    #154655

    Whitehurst
    Participant

    Quality can be compared to Sex
    Everyone loves it
    CEO’s shy to talk about it
    Every one buys it
    Every ones in for it
    Some are new to it
    Some one wants to learn it
    and some consultants think hey are naturally born with it
     
    Regards
    joe
     

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    #154657

    Anuroop
    Participant

    Quality is a “feeling” (Good or Bad) as perceived by the customer!!
    Regards,
    Anuroop

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    #154659

    Allthingsidiot O
    Participant

    Only  one  part of  it

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    #154677

    CT
    Participant

    Quality is defined by your customers specification and the vendors mission statement of meeting and exceeding customer specifications.
    However Quality can also be what the customer is willing to pay For.   Example: Remington firearms makes several shotguns. The model 870 pump is usally about $200 at wally world. Beretta makes a pump shotgun that has the same capability of the Remington, but cost is more than twice as much. Comparing quality of the two guns is simply the customers preference, they both go boom, they both are very durable, they both have similar feel. So whats the Quality difference? What the customer wants or is willing to pay for.

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    #154684

    david Z
    Participant

    quality is nothing but to meet the requirement of buyer.
    Even though we do quality assurance,continous quality improving,and we think the customer also including inner and outside customer.But if the buyer return producter or did not buy any more,it’s bad.

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    #154686

    bb2002
    Participant

    Quality to me is when an organization  provides goods and services in a way that clearly sets them apart from thier competition. So much so that even if it is more expensive, thier customers are willing to pay for it.

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    #154696

    Allthingsidiot O
    Participant

    Quality Guru Crosby said:Quality is  free
    This  quote  is  referring  to  what?

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    #154698

    Allthingsidiot O
    Participant

    Disagree

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    #154708

    Allthingsidiot O
    Participant

    Remember Taguchi:Quality losses are a  loss  to  society,
    The  Goal:On target with  minimum  variance

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