Without a well-defined action plan to improve the quality of your systems, processes, service, or strategy – the term quality may simply become just that – a term.
Where are you today? Where can you achieve the best results in the least amount of time? What are your long-term quality initiatives? These questions can be answered by a sound quality improvement strategy.
Determining your current state, identifying improvement opportunities, and crafting future quality strategies is easier than you might think.
What should be your first step to building a quality strategy? Our recommended approach is to review (and hopefully submit) an application for a nationally or regionally recognized quality award.
The California Council for Excellence has a series of quality award programs that can guide you through the process. Their version of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, the California Award for Performance Excellence (CAPE) Prospector recognition program, guides you through the same criteria, but only requires you to discuss how your processes address the “overall requirements” for each Category.
The seven Categories of the Malcolm Baldrige, CAPE, and many similar quality award programs are:
- Strategic Planning
- Customer Focus
- Measurement, Analysis, and Knowledge Management
- Workforce Focus
- Operations Focus
This is an excellent way to become familiar with a formalized quality award program that is designed to help you improve your company, not simply seek an award. Ask any organization that has applied for a CAPE, or national award, and they will tell you it is the application process (not the award itself) that provides the real insight to improving processes, performance, and service.
Don’t just talk about quality – learn about it, implement it, and succeed because of it.
Information about the award and application process can be found at CAPE Awards.
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