(NIST: Washington) -- Five U.S. organizations were recently named winners of the 2007 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, which promotes excellence in organizational performance, recognizes the achievements and results of U.S. organizations, and publicizes successful performance strategies. For the first time, nonprofit organizations have been selected.
The 2007 Baldrige Award recipients are:
“I am pleased to join President Bush in congratulating the five outstanding organizations that have been named to receive this year’s Baldrige Award,” says Carlos Gutierrez, Secretary of Commerce. “The organizations we recognize today have given us superb examples of innovation, excellence, and world-class performance. They serve as role models for organizations of all kinds striving to improve effectiveness and increase value to their customers.”
Along with recognizing the achievements of the award recipients, a key measure of the Baldrige National Quality Program’s impact has been the widespread use of its Criteria for Performance Excellence, a guide designed to help organizations of all types improve their operations. Since 1987, about 10 million copies of the Baldrige criteria have been distributed. Downloads currently number about 1 million annually. Additionally, more than 40 U.S. states and more than 45 countries worldwide have implemented programs based on the Baldrige criteria.
The 2007 Baldrige Award recipients were selected from a field of 84 applicants. All of the applicants were evaluated by an independent board of examiners in seven areas: leadership; strategic planning; customer and market focus; measurement, analysis, and knowledge management; workforce focus; process management; and results. The evaluation process for the 2007 Baldrige Award recipients included about 1,000 hours of review and an on-site visit by teams of examiners to clarify questions and verify information in the applications.
The 2007 Baldrige Award recipients will receive their awards in a ceremony in Washington, D.C., early next year.
Named after Malcolm Baldrige, the 26th Secretary of Commerce, the Baldrige Award was established by the U.S. Congress in 1987 to enhance the competitiveness and performance of U.S. businesses. Only manufacturers, service companies and small businesses were eligible at first. In 1999 eligibility was expanded to include education and health care organizations, and again in 2007 to include nonprofit organizations (including charities, trade and professional associations, and government agencies). The award is not given for specific products or services. Since 1988, 72 organizations have received Baldrige Awards.
The Baldrige program is managed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in conjunction with the private sector. As a nonregulatory agency, NIST promotes U.S. innovation and industrial competitiveness by advancing measurement science, standards, and technology in ways that enhance economic security and improve the quality of life.
For more information, visit www.nist.gov/public_affairs/releases/2007baldrigerecipients.htm.