Check out this Simple PDCA Excel template and learn to use this famous management tool, which means: Plan, Do, Check, and Act.
In this Excel spreadsheet model, we added the MASP methodology (Method of Analysis and Problem Solving) so that you can use examples of analytical questions and manage to develop your project aiming at continuous improvement.
PDCA and QC-Story cycle
Both methodologies focus on problem-solving, being used by companies of all sizes.
In the PDCA cycle, the work process is cyclical and supported by four pillars (Planning / Development / Check / Action). Pillars explored through the Quality Storyboard methodology aim to identify problems, moving onto the designing and execution of an action plan, verification of results, and validation of a new standard to be adopted and improved continuously.
How to get results with the PDCA + QA cycle?
American consultant William Edwards Deming was one of the precursors of this tool, attributing its origin as the “Shewhart cycle”. See how you can use this methodology in favor of positive results:
Identify the problem, methods used and develop an action plan to improve the process and eliminate the cause of the problem. Note that this planning step is essential to avoid future inconvenience. Make sure that the project is in accordance with the values practiced by the company and is being transmitted and understood with a high level of clarity.
Execute the action plan without changing the proposed methods. Measure the results and create indicators for further evaluation and validation of the adopted strategy.
Check what is working and what is not. Make a quantitative and qualitative analysis. Assess the level of adherence of the actions in relation to the plan and the plan in relation to the real need for a solution.
Validate results reached and approve the implementation of the new standard to be continuously improved or return to the previous steps and make the necessary corrections to obtain the desired solution. Finishing is better than perfect, so avoid improvising or planning too much.
Meet the Quality Storyboard (Problem Analysis and Solution Method):
- Identification: define the problem clearly. Identify current methods, standards, and procedures.
- Note: detail the problem and notice its characteristics. Talk to people who will work directly in its execution and broaden your perception with different points of view.
- Analysis: investigate and confirm the real causes and not the effects of the problem. Assess possible alternatives to eliminate the cause of the problem.
- Action plan: document an action plan to block the cause of the problem. Set appropriate goals, schedules, and methods. Plan how you will use current resources so that, from the present moment, you reach the desired future goal.
- Execution: perform the steps defined in the action plan. Observe and compare the planned and accomplished schedule.
Do not just compare the quantitative aspects of the plan’s execution. Make sure the people involved have a high degree of understanding of the plan and have given positive feedback on how they have understood the details of the strategy for carrying out the actions.
- Verification: monitor the results, and if the cause is not blocked, go back to the “observations” step and make corrections.
- Standardization: use the standard adopted to prevent the problem from reappearing.
- Completion: measure the results, validate the problem-solving process and increase continuous improvements.
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