Discusses Shewhart’s control charts and how they have been confined traditionally to the shopfloor in manufacturing industry. Contends that now practitioners are leading a growing interest in the charts’ wider application in areas such as sales, marketing, customer service, and inventory management. Shewhart discovered that variation in a process can result either from common causes (part of the process) or special causes (not part of the process). Shewhart’s charts enable us to learn about processes and improve them with the aid of his plan‐do‐study‐act continuous improvement cycle. Research conducted in Japan showed that companies which won the Deming Prize consistently outperformed the averages in financial measures for the industry.
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