This is an era of massive data. A huge amount of data is being
generated from the web and from customer relations records, not to
mention also from sensors used in the manufacturing industry
(semiconductor, pharmaceutical, petrochemical companies and many
Univariate Control Charts
In the manufacturing industry, critical product characteristics
get routinely collected to ensure... Continue Reading
Pareto chart is a graphic representation of the 80/20 rule, also
known as the Pareto principle. If you're a quality improvement
specialist, you know that the chart is named after the early 20th
century economist Vilfredo Pareto, who discovered that roughly 20%
of the population in Italy owned about 80% of the property at that
You probably also know that the Pareto principle was... Continue Reading
When you analyze a Gage R&R study in statistical
software, your results can be overwhelming. There are a lot of
statistics listed in Minitab's Session Window—what do they all
mean, and are they telling you the same thing?
If you don't know where to start, it can be hard to figure out
what the analysis is telling you, especially if your measurement
system is giving you some numbers you'd think are... Continue Reading
There has been plenty of noisy disagreement about the state of
health care in the past several years, but when you get beyond the
controversies surrounding various programs and changes, a great
deal of common ground exists.
agrees that there's a lot of waste and inefficiency in the way
we've been doing things, and that health care should be delivered
as efficiently and effectively as... Continue Reading
the roots of Lean Six Sigma and other quality improvement
methodologies are in manufacturing, it’s interesting to see how
other organizational functions and industries apply LSS tools
successfully. Quality improvement certainly has moved far beyond
the walls of manufacturing plants!
For example, I recently had the opportunity to talk to Drew
Mohler, a Lean Six Sigma black belt and senior... Continue Reading
When I wrote
How to Calculate B10 Life with Statistical
Software, I promised a
follow-up blog post that would describe how to compute any “BX”
lifetime. In this post I’ll follow through on that promise, and in
a third blog post in this series, I will explain why BX life is one
of the best measures you can use in your reliability
As a refresher, B10 life refers to the time at which 10% of... Continue Reading
If you need to assess process
performance relative to some specification limit(s),
capability is the tool to use. You collect some accurate
data from a stable process, enter those measurements in Minitab,
and then choose Stat > Quality Tools >
Capability Analysis/Sixpack or Assistant
> Capability Analysis.
Now, what about sorting the data?
I’ve been asked “why does Cpk change when I... Continue Reading
Any time you see a process
changing, it's important to determine why. Is it indicative of a
long term trend, or is it a fad that you can ignore since it will
be gone shortly?
For example, in the 2014 NBA Finals, the San Antonio Spurs beat
the two-time defending champion Miami Heat by attempting more
3-pointers (23.6 per game) than any championship team in league
history. In the 2015 regular... Continue Reading
In an earlier post, I shared an
overview of acceptance sampling, a method that lets you
evaluate a sample of items from a larger batch of products (for
instance, electronics components you've sourced from a new
supplier) and use that sample to decide whether or not you should
accept or reject the entire shipment.
There are two approaches to acceptance sampling. If you do it by
attributes, you... Continue Reading
In my last post, I showed how to use Minitab Statistical
create an acceptance sampling plan by variables, using the
scenario of a an electronics company that receives monthly
shipments of LEDs that must have soldering leads that are at least
2 cm long. This time, we'll compare that plan with some other
The variables sampling plan we came up with to verify the... Continue Reading
If you're just getting started in the world of quality
improvement, or if you find yourself in a position where you
suddenly need to evaluate the quality of incoming or outgoing
products from your company, you may have encountered the term
"acceptance sampling." It's a statistical method for evaluating the
quality of a large batch of materials from a small sample of items,
Each year Santa’s Elves have to
take all the information provided by family, friends and teachers
to determine if all the children of the world have been “Naughty”
or “Nice.” This is no small task, as according to the
website www.santafaqs.com Santa delivers over 5 billion presents per
only is it a large task in terms of size, but it is critical that
the Elves have a consistent approach to... Continue Reading
of us have data stored in a database or file that we need to
analyze on a regular basis. If you're in that situation and you're
using Minitab Statistical Software, here's how you can save some
time and effort by automating the process.
When you're finished, instead of using File > Query
Database (ODBC) each time you want to perform analysis on
the most up-to-date set of data, you can add a... Continue Reading
Having delivered training courses on
capability analyses with Minitab, several times, I have noticed
that one question you can be absolutely sure will be asked, during
the course, is: What is the difference between the Cpk
and the Ppk indices?
Ppk vs. Cpk indices
The terms Cpk and Ppk are often confused,
so that when quality or process engineers refer to the
Cpk index, they often actually intend to... Continue Reading
Control charts are a fantastic tool. These charts plot your
process data to identify common cause and special cause variation.
By identifying the different causes of variation, you can take
action on your process without over-controlling it.
Assessing the stability of a process can help you determine
whether there is a problem and identify the source of the problem.
Is the mean too high, too low,... Continue Reading
Don't be a grumpy cat when something on your capability report
doesn't smell right. After
pressing that OK button to run your analysis, allow your inner cat to
understand how and why certain statistics are being used. To help
you along, here are some capability issues that customers have
brought up recently.
Cp is missing
You’ve generated a capability analysis report with the Johnson
transformation... Continue Reading
By Matthew Barsalou, guest
A problem must be understood before it can be properly
addressed. A thorough understanding of the problem is critical when
root cause analysis (RCA) and an RCA is necessary if an
organization wants to implement corrective actions that truly
address the root cause of the problem. An RCA may also be necessary
for process improvement projects; it is... Continue Reading
you know that November is World Quality Month? The American Society
for Quality is once again heading up this year’s festivities.
Throughout the month of November, ASQ will be promoting the use
of quality tools in businesses, communities, and institutions all
over the world. You can check it out at http://asq.org/world-quality-month/.
Here at Minitab, we’re also pretty excited about World... Continue Reading
In Part 5 of our series, we began the analysis of
the experiment data by reviewing analysis of covariance and
blocking variables, two key concepts in the design and
interpretation of your results.
250-yard marker at the Tussey Mountain Driving Range, one of the
locations where we conducted our golf experiment. Some of the
golfers drove their balls well beyond this 250-yard maker during a
few of... Continue Reading
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