Latest Posts

Are We Teaching Students the Unnecessary Things?

I’m here at the IISE (Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers) conference in Pittsburgh. One professor had been teaching students how to use Excel to create control charts, but he was beginning to feel like that was a waste of classroom time (duh!). I beat him up a little for teaching DIY Excel stuff to […]

Posted by Jay Arthur in healthcare, Lean, Manufacturing, Service, Six Sigma, Statistics.

Top Leaders Deliver Reliably

May-June 2017 HBR discusses the results of a 10-year study of what makes CEOs great. Of the four traits, number 4, Delivering Reliably, was found to be the most powerful of the four essential behaviors. Reliable CEOs were 15 times more likely to succeed. I have found that one of the most effective ways to […]

Posted by Jay Arthur in healthcare, Lean, Manufacturing, Service, Six Sigma.

Quality Tool Usage at ASQ World 2017

This year, I tallied the quality tools used in poster presentations by presenting teams. Once again, quality tools were in short supply. Only one control chart, Pareto and histogram? Two fishbones? Mainly line and bar charts (72%) the dumbest charts available for performance improvement. Shouldn’t American Society for Quality set a higher standard?

Posted by Jay Arthur in QI Macros, Six Sigma.

Focus of Lean Six Sigma Projects

At the Shingo Conference in Atlanta this week, Professor George Easton presented findings from a study of two company’s Six Sigma projects. He split them in many ways, but the simplest view uses operations management metrics: quality, cost, delivery, flexibility and innovation. Here are Pareto charts of the two companies. Both focus on quality, but […]

Posted by Jay Arthur in Jay Arthur Blog.

Will Automation Steal Your Job? Skills to Beat AI

The March-April 2017 issue of HBR has a survey of 1770 managers in 14 countries. When asked to identify the top 3 skills needed, the managers identified two that are important to quality: 31% of managers saidĀ  Data Analysis and Interpretation 20% said Quality Management and Standards QI Macros New Data Mining Wizard can dramatically […]

Posted by Jay Arthur in Data Mining, QI Macros, Six Sigma.

Use XmR Charts instead of c, np, p and u Charts

I have found that an XmR chart is the easiest way to display attribute data. Simply convert the numerator/denominator into a ratio and plot the ratio. defects per day could be a c chart, but an XmR chart works justĀ as well defects/samplesize could be np, p or u chart, but XmR chart works just as […]

Posted by Jay Arthur in QI Macros, Six Sigma, Statistics.

What USL/LSL Do I Need for Cp>1?

Customer asked me what seemed like a strange question: What specification limits do I need to get a Cp greater than one? Usually her customer should set specification limits, but her boss wanted to know what they could deliver. Hmmmm! Then I realized that since QI Macros templates (e.g., XmR chart) calculate the average and […]

Posted by Jay Arthur in QI Macros, Six Sigma, Statistics.

Cpk and Hard vs Specification Limits

A customer called upset about Cpk. He had a runout of 0.010, but was getting a very low Cpk. Turns out he’d made the classic mistake of confusing a hard limit (e.g., zero) with a specification limit. I had him use QI Macros with an Upper Specification limit (USL) and no Lower Specification Limit (LSL). […]

Posted by Jay Arthur in QI Macros, Six Sigma.

Lean Insights from “The Founder” Movie

Early in the movie, the McDonald’s brothers describe how they came up with the concept for speedy service. It’s Lean. They had too many menu items, so they decide to simplify down to burgers, fries and soft drinks. (Think Lean inventory.) They go to a tennis court and use chalk to lay out a possible […]

Posted by Jay Arthur in healthcare, Lean, Manufacturing, Service.

Mistake-proofing Bathroom Design

My friend, Mary LoVerde’s ezine shows a hotel bathroom she recently experienced. How would you mistake-proof this design? What are the possible failure modes and effects (FMEA)?

Posted by Jay Arthur in QI Macros, Six Sigma.