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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2006

Johannes Freiesleben

The objective of this paper is to demonstrate basic economic principles underlying the use of inspection systems and to derive a basis for comparing inspection costs with…

1131

Abstract

Purpose

The objective of this paper is to demonstrate basic economic principles underlying the use of inspection systems and to derive a basis for comparing inspection costs with the alternative costs of quality improvement.

Design/methodology/approach

For this purpose, the impact of final, rectifying and sequential inspection on unit production costs is assessed using a production process model with uniform defect propensity in the single process steps. Based on this model, an objective function with the objective of minimizing unit production costs including inspection costs is formulated and a genetic algorithm method used to optimize it.

Findings

Two distinct patterns of optimal inspection allocation could be detected for changing defect rate, processed volume, fixed inspection costs and variable input costs. These allocation patterns highlight the basic economic relations of an inspection approach and verify the assumption that sequential inspection schemes are cost‐optimal. However, the benefits of quality improvement are found to be superior to any inspection scheme for a majority of cases.

Research limitations/implications

The findings are derived from a theoretical examination. Further limitations stem from the cost‐centred approach which only covers the internal component of an economic assessment of quality. However, the economic perspective advanced in this paper can in future be subjected to empirical testing and be elaborated by subsequent research.

Practical implications

Although built on simplifying assumptions, the process model can provide important insights into basic economic relations and demonstrate that inspection is an inferior way of dealing with quality problems. It can thereby help to promote a better economic understanding of quality.

Originality/value

This paper provides an economic assessment of an important aspect of quality management, which has so far not been advanced.

Details

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, vol. 23 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-671X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 March 1998

Mayuram S. Krishnan

This paper examines the impact of team factors in software development, such as the domain and language experience of the team members and the personnel capability of the…

1762

Abstract

This paper examines the impact of team factors in software development, such as the domain and language experience of the team members and the personnel capability of the team, on the costs and quality of the software products. The measure of the quality of the software products is based on the number of unique field problems that customers reported. The analysis, based on data collected on 37 software projects from a leading firm in the packaged software industry, indicates that software teams with higher levels of personnel capability exhibit significantly higher productivity and quality in the software products they deliver. A case study of one of the most successful package software development efforts at this firm highlights the important aspects of team dynamics in a highly successful software project.

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. 11 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 6 April 2020

Iwan Vanany, Kim Hua Tan, Nurhadi Siswanto, Niniet Indah Arvitrida and Firman Mega Pahlawan

In recent years, halal food industries are facing a high level of competition. The growing demand for halal food means firms are working hard to improve quality and reduce…

Abstract

Purpose

In recent years, halal food industries are facing a high level of competition. The growing demand for halal food means firms are working hard to improve quality and reduce halal food defects. The purpose of this study is to propose a halal-based six sigma (SS) framework that could be used to reduce halal food defects and improve compliance.

Design/methodology/approach

The proposed halal six sigma (HSS) framework has five phases based on the define-measure-analyse-improve-control (DMAIC) approach. The proposed framework also integrates halal assurance system requirements into HSS to ensure compliance. Tools used in the proposed model include SIPOC tools, Pareto diagram, root cause analysis and the improvement process flows. A case study in a chicken meat company is used to test and validate the proposed framework. In case of study research, brainstorming was used to review an initial proposed framework and focus group discussions were used to determine feasible improvement actions.

Findings

The results showed that the proposed HSS framework could be effective to detect and reduce the halal defects and lower the halal defect costs. By adopting the framework, the case firm was able to lower halal defect costs significantly and increase the SS level.

Practical implications

SS approach can be designed and adapted to specific food industry. HSS framework could provide a systematic approach to reduce halal food defects and sustain the improvement efforts. The proposed HSS framework is also easy to use to understand halal critical points and improve halal compliance.

Originality/value

This study proposed a HSS framework that can be adopted to reduce halal food defects and costs. This proposed framework will benefit the halal food industry intending to realize zero halal food defects and lower production costs. The limited number of publications in the research theme of halal food defects show that there is a significant gap in the existing body of knowledge.

Details

Journal of Islamic Marketing, vol. 12 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1759-0833

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 2 February 2015

Jongsawas Chongwatpol

Since works-in-process (WIPs) are highly vulnerable to defects because of the variety and complexity of manufacturing processes, the purpose of this paper is to describe…

1335

Abstract

Purpose

Since works-in-process (WIPs) are highly vulnerable to defects because of the variety and complexity of manufacturing processes, the purpose of this paper is to describe how to utilize existing analytics techniques to reduce defects, improve production processes, and reduce the cost of operations.

Design/methodology/approach

Three alternatives for diagnosing causes of defects and variations in the production process are presented in order to answer the following research question: “What are the most important factors to be included in prognostic analysis to prevent defects?”

Findings

The key findings for the proposed alternatives help explain the characteristics of defects that have a great impact on manufacturing yield and the quality of products. Consequently, any corrective action and preventive maintenance addressing the common causes of defects and variations in the process can be regularly evaluated and monitored.

Research limitations/implications

Although the focus of this study is on improving shop-floor operations by reducing defects, further experimentation with business analytics in other areas such as machine utilization and maintenance, process control, and safety evaluation remains to be done.

Practical implications

This study has been validated with several scenarios in a manufacturing company, and the results demonstrate the practical validity of the approach, which is equally applicable to other manufacturing sub-sectors.

Originality/value

This study is different from the others by providing alternatives for diagnosing the root causes of defects. Control charts, costs of defects, and clustering-based defect prediction scores are utilized to reduce defects. Additionally, the key contribution of this study is to demonstrate different methods for understanding WIP behaviors and identifying any irregularities in the production process.

Details

Industrial Management & Data Systems, vol. 115 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-5577

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 September 2005

Rupa Mahanti and Jiju Antony

The aim of this paper is to highlight the application of six sigma, software engineering techniques and simulation to software development with a view to improving the…

4125

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to highlight the application of six sigma, software engineering techniques and simulation to software development with a view to improving the software process and product.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper attempts to integrate six sigma and simulation to define, analyse, measure and predict various elements of software development (such as cost, schedule, defects) that influence software quality, thereby helping the software personnel take necessary measures early in the development process to improve the software processes and remove defects. Simulation results provide qualitative and quantitative suggestions on the ways to change the software process to achieve six sigma quality. The integration of six sigma and CMM and the role of knowledge management in software organisations have been taken into account.

Findings

Most software organisations operate between 2.3 and 3 sigma level. This paper presents a framework for definition, measurement, and analysis of important elements of the software product and process using six sigma tools and exploits the use of simulation in bringing six sigma improvements. Case studies have been presented to demonstrate the findings.

Research limitations/implications

Application of the techniques presented in this paper would definitely improve software organisations' processes and product.

Practical implications

The adoption of methodologies outlined in this paper in software companies would enable them to attain improvements in terms of cost, schedule and quality.

Originality/value

The integration of simulation with six sigma applied to software development is novel in this paper. This paper will be valuable for quality professionals and management personnel in software organisations.

Details

Managerial Auditing Journal, vol. 20 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-6902

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 20 August 2021

Malindu Sandanayake, Wei Yang, Namita Chhibba and Zora Vrcelj

The issue of building defects is a growing concern that affects all major construction stakeholders as a result of costs and time implications of reworks. The magnitude of…

Abstract

Purpose

The issue of building defects is a growing concern that affects all major construction stakeholders as a result of costs and time implications of reworks. The magnitude of the problem is severe with statistics highlighting defects often result in 4% of the total cost of construction of a building. Despite the importance of this problem, studies have seldom considered development of systematic approaches to enhance the quality control process in construction.

Design/methodology/approach

Building defects is a growing concern that affects all major construction stakeholders because of costs and time implications of reworks. Magnitude of the problem is severe with statistics highlighting defects often result in 4% of the total cost of construction of a building. Despite the importance, studies have seldom considered development of systematic approaches to enhance the quality control process in construction.

Findings

Results indicated that poor workmanship is the main cause of building defects and incomplete works is a frequently detected defect type. Results categorised defects based on cost and frequency to identify the severity. Findings also identified four focus areas including control measures, technology use audit and inspections and promotion of best knowledge.

Research limitations/implications

The study lacks generalisation as it covers only Victorian scenario and further studies are needed to generalise the findings.

Originality/value

The study provides a deeper understanding of the challenges currently facing the residential construction industry in Victoria, Australia, and underlines the need for developing quantitative models and methodologies to improve current processes, practices and policies for effective defects minimisation in Victoria, Australia. The systematic methodological framework can also be adopted by researches across the globe to effectively analyse the options for minimising residential building defects.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 July 2017

Andrea Nana Ofori-Boadu, Musibau Adeola Shofoluwe and Robert Pyle

The purpose of this paper is to develop a Housing Eligibility Assessment Scoring Method (HEASM) for low-income Urgent Repair Programs (URPs).

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to develop a Housing Eligibility Assessment Scoring Method (HEASM) for low-income Urgent Repair Programs (URPs).

Design/methodology/approach

In order to develop a practical HEASM that incorporates the prevailing eligibility assessment criteria for low-income URPs, a case study research approach was adopted. Emergent themes and patterns in predominant eligibility assessment criteria and methods are derived from program documents utilized by a successful State Urgent Repair Program (SURP) and its 42 Community Partners operating in the Southeastern region of the USA. Coupled with interviews and the expert analysis of SURP staff, the quantitative analysis of 11,414 repaired homes and literature reviews were used to categorize predominant eligible housing repairs and costs.

Findings

The five key eligibility assessment criteria categories that emerged from the data analysis are: location, owner-occupancy, family needs, housing repair, and estimated repair costs. The framework of the proposed HEASM is guided by these five categories.

Originality/value

URP decision makers are provided with a simple, practical, and objective eligibility assessment method that can be easily modified to accommodate the unique eligibility criteria and local program conditions. This method should improve the eligibility assessment, prioritization, and the eventual selection of qualifying applicants. Consequently, the capacity of URPs to provide funding to their targeted populations with the most critical needs would be enhanced. Insights could drive the impetus to modify existing URP.

Details

International Journal of Building Pathology and Adaptation, vol. 35 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-4708

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 8 May 2017

Tony Hopkin, Shu-Ling Lu, Phil Rogers and Martin Sexton

Research on housing defects has limited its enquiry to the classifications of defects, potential impact of defects, and their detection and remediation during construction…

1482

Abstract

Purpose

Research on housing defects has limited its enquiry to the classifications of defects, potential impact of defects, and their detection and remediation during construction and the builder’s liability period, without considering the warranty period. The purpose of this paper is to better understand which impacts of defects are perceived as important by the key stakeholders involved in their detection and remediation over the construction, builder’s liability and insurer’s warranty periods.

Design/methodology/approach

The questionnaire survey approach was used. The questionnaire distribution list was drawn from the UK’s largest warranty provider (WP) and approved inspector’s records. The questionnaire was distributed to 2003 people, receiving 292 responses, a response rate of 15 per cent.

Findings

This research challenges the assertion that the house building industry (i.e. house builders (HBs), building inspectors and WPs) is predominantly cost focussed and finds that the potential impact of defects on home occupants (HOs) are their primary concern. In contrast, the HOs’ appear solely focussed on the disruption defects caused on their daily lives and perceive a lack customer focus in the house building industry.

Originality/value

This study provides empirical evidence of the contrasting view of the house building industry and HOs with respect to the prioritisation of the impacts of defects. Further, this research offers HBs an alternative approach to determine which defects should be targeted for reduction purposes which may lead to improved levels of customer satisfaction.

Details

International Journal of Building Pathology and Adaptation, vol. 35 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-4708

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 April 1996

T.F. Burgess

Existing quality‐cost models have been criticized for their imprecision and inadequate theoretical justification. Attempts to remedy these deficiencies by using systems…

2575

Abstract

Existing quality‐cost models have been criticized for their imprecision and inadequate theoretical justification. Attempts to remedy these deficiencies by using systems dynamics to build a generic model relating quality conformance levels to the quality‐cost categories of prevention, appraisal and failure (PAF). Outlines in depth the assumptions underlying the model’s structure and links model parameters to published empirical data. Explores the model’s sensitivities to changes in factors including different initial values of conformance quality. Determines the potential for improvements in quarterly and cumulative quality costs by changing the PAF cost levels.

Details

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, vol. 13 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-671X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 16 February 2022

Ahmed Nouh, Elsayed Elkasaby and Khaled Hussein

This study aims to establish a new system to predict the defect liability phase (DLP) cost using the Six Sigma methodology, which investigates sources of variations and

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to establish a new system to predict the defect liability phase (DLP) cost using the Six Sigma methodology, which investigates sources of variations and reduces the error level to 3.4 per million through five phases: define, measure, analyze, design and verify.

Design/methodology/approach

After the initial handover of the construction project, the DLP follows the practical completion. During this stage, the contractor is responsible for the remedy of any defects that appeared in the project. Many researchers have studied defect reasons and their associated costs in different industries, while the construction industry remains a green field for this kind of research. The objective of this study was to develop a model to predict the DLP cost. The research methodology adopted the five stages of the Six Sigma cycle: defining objectives, measuring the data, analyzing performance, designing the model and verifying the results. Twenty factors were identified as potential factors affecting the DLP cost. Factors were categorized into two main clusters: project data and organization data. Interviews were conducted with 42 project management experts, who have 8–35 years of experience in construction project management, to rank the 20 factors based on their importance. Simo’s procedure was used to obtain the weight of each factor affecting the DLP cost based on the opinions of the experts. The Pareto principle was used to select the “Vital Few” factors affecting the DLP cost, and six factors were selected. The design of experiments (DOE) was used to establish a dynamic model to predict the DLP cost using a sample of 41 construction projects obtained from the above-mentioned 42 project management experts. The model accuracy was verified using data obtained from a different sample of five construction projects, which were not used to establish the model.

Findings

The results showed that among the 20 factors, only six were found to have a cumulative impact of 50% over the cost of the DLP: type of project, project contract value, nationality of the employer, project manager experience, DLP duration and sector of the employer. A model was established through the DOE to predict the DLP cost using the values of the aforementioned factors.

Research limitations/implications

As a natural limitation of using DOE, the newly developed model can be applied to predict the DLP cost based on data within the range of data used during the model development, which means that model is confined within the specific measured values of factors. Furthermore, it will be beneficial for future studies to study the impact of other factors related to the types of materials or equipment used in building the project because it was not considered during this study because of the huge diversities in these factors and difficulties in determining its impact on the DLP cost.

Practical implications

The unique results of using DOE through Minitab software facilitated obtaining of a dynamic model, which means that researchers can modify any value of the six factors and monitor instantly the expected change in the DLP cost, which will allow a better understanding of the impact of each factor on the DLP cost. Moreover, the new model will help contractors to predict the expected DLP cost to be added for their project budget, which will mitigate the risk of cost overrun resulted from the cost of defect rectification.

Originality/value

A dynamic model was established to predict the DLP cost using the DOE. The new model was validated, and the prediction error ranged from −18% to +21%.

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