Content By Quality Digest

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By: Quality Digest

TapRooT will host a summit in March for quality professionals interested in learning more about their industry.

The summit will be held March 2–4 in San Antonio and will include breakout sessions in 11 different tracks, including health care performance improvement, corrective action programs, quality improvement and equipment failure analysis. The event will feature keynote addresses from Scott Waddle, USS Greeneville former commanding officer; MIT professor Nelson Repenning; and Dave Prewitt, Alaska Airlines vice president. The summit is sponsored by System Improvements.

Pre-summit courses include seminars on TapRooT’s advanced trending techniques and root cause analysis, and failure mode effects analysis for quality improvement in health care. Pre-summit workshops will be held Feb. 28–March 1. The summit will end with a Friday afternoon golf tournament organized in a team scramble format.

For more information, visit www.taproot.com/summit.

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By: Quality Digest

Cole-Parmer’s InnoCal metrology laboratory has upgraded its flow capabilities to include calibration and service for gravimetric and mass flow equipment up to 60,000 sccm.

The lab uses the latest DHI molbloc/molbox test standard and offers long-form, NIST-traceable certificates with documentation of measurement uncertainty and flowmeter performance graphing. The lab is registered to ISO 17025.

The following measurement services are also available: temperature, humidity, pressure/vacuum, time, volume, rotary motion, pH, specific gravity and refractometry.

For more information, visit www.innocalsolutions.com.

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By: Quality Digest

Datasweep Inc. recently announced that SAP certified the interface between its Advantage suite and SAP’s enterprise resource planning product line.

SAP announced at its North American SAPPHIRE meeting earlier this year its plans to prioritize the integration of its ERP solutions with outside enterprise manufacturing systems. Datasweep’s SAP adapter allows detailed, real-time, two-way communication between Datasweep and SAP applications. Its new Integration Manager coordinates the interchange and runs as a server-side process on a variety of operating systems and environments.

“ERP systems weren’t initially created to support the intricate, rapidly changing shop floor transactions that Datasweep solutions are designed to handle,” says Greg Gorbach, ARC Advisory Group research director. “Most companies, even those running large ERP systems, track their detailed production operations using supplemental systems—usually paper-based or homegrown. But that can lead to a mountain of paperwork or (difficult) code, especially for companies under stringent government regulation.”

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By: Quality Digest

Decisioneering Inc. recently released Crystal Ball 7, the latest version of its popular quality software solution.

Crystal Ball 7 gives users greater ability to transform spreadsheets into dynamic models that solve complicated Six Sigma problems involving uncertainty, variability and risk. It extends the previous ability of the software to provide scalable models for sharing information, statistical models, and reporting and analysis tools. The new features shorten the time required to set up models, increase ease of use and provide simple ways to interpret and communicate results.

“Crystal Ball is increasingly being used as the tool to communicate risk and variation throughout an organization’s Six Sigma and quality initiatives,” says Jim Franklin, Decisoneering Inc. CEO. “With the additional features incorporated into Crystal Ball 7, Decisioneering continues to pioneer the use of simulation and optimization in everyday business decisions.”

For more information, visit www.crystalball.com.

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By: Quality Digest

The American Society for Quality is seeking quality professionals to expand its faculty base.

Candidates should have at least five years of experience in the following areas:

  • Quality tools and problem solving
  • Statistical process control
  • Six Sigma/Master Black Belts
  • Failure mode and effects analysis
  • Human factors
  • ISO 9001
  • Lean
  • Patient safety plan development
  • Patient flow
  • Teamwork
  • Leadership development
  • Cultural change
  • Integrating technology and quality management systems

For more information, visit www.asq.org.

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By: Quality Digest

A successful peer evaluation by the International Auditor and Training Certification Association recently qualified the Registrar Accreditation Board for a new agreement to enhance worldwide recognition of auditor training courses to ISO 14001.

RAB is one of the first organizations to earn an initial four-year qualification for the EMS multilateral agreement. It’s a culmination of a series of evaluations that examined the procedures and operating practices of each participating certification body. RAB’s audit was performed by auditors from Australia and South Africa.

In addition to qualifying RAB for the new IATCA agreement, the auditors recommended a four-year extension of RAB’s qualification for IATCA’s quality management system.

For more information, visit www.rabnet.com.

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By: Denise Robitaille

I’ve long been frustrated, both as an auditor and as a consultant, by the unique exemption most organizations extend to distributors. It’s a common practice for purchasing personnel to excuse distributors from the vendor qualification requirements they apply to most of the other companies they do business with.

The defeatist notion that prevails is that distributors are impotent go-betweens, with no appreciable influence on the product. Many distributors perpetuate this view by implying, either deliberately or inadvertently, that if the manufacturers they represent are ISO 9001-registered, then the blessing somehow rubs off on them as well. Conversely, if there’s a problem with a product or the manner in which it is delivered, the fault lies not with the distributor but with the manufacturer. What ends up happening is a shell game in which no one is accountable.

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By: Praveen Gupta

Six Sigma is implemented to affect the bottom line. In a corporation, Six Sigma starts in operations then moves into design and finally supporting areas. Finance and accounting (F/A) functions are involved to monitor the financials, however, they aren’t involved in practicing Six Sigma. At Motorola, the F/A department was ones of the first to practice Six Sigma. Due to the nature of regulatory compliance, F/A departments have higher expectations for accuracy. However, improvement in F/A hasn’t been considered critical.

Six Sigma quickly brings a great deal of improvement. To improve from three-sigma to six-sigma performance levels requires more than 20,000—х improvement. Such improvement can’t happen without involving every department. In other words, Six Sigma means lots of changes and reengineering. As the pressure to improve profit margins grows, no department can afford to be excluded from Six Sigma implementation. Every department must assess its value contribution to the corporate performance. Recent studies report that businesses face the following changes or challenges in F/A departments:

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By: Quality Digest

The American Society for Quality will host its fifth Six Sigma conference in Palm Springs, California, next year.

The conference will be held Feb. 7-8 at the Hyatt Grand Champions Resort and Spa. It’s designed for managers who are actively involved in the process of organizational change, development and group dynamics. ASQ reports that presenters will include representatives from Fortune 500 companies.

For more information, visit www.asq.org.

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By: Quality Digest

Planners for a January manufacturing, design and plastics exposition will feature the use of Six Sigma to enhance these industries.

It will be the first time planners of shows (the exposition is made up of five similar trade shows held simultaneously in the Anaheim Convention Center) will so thoroughly segment the conference sessions, in an effort to direct attendees to the topics most applicable to them. “New Technologies for Achieving Lean and Sigma Goals,” is one of 30 sessions that will be offered at the event.

The show will be held Jan. 10-12 and is produced and managed by Canon Communications LLC. For more information, visit www.canontradeshows.com.