Browse Glossary  
 
A B C D E F G
H I J K L M N
O P Q R S T U
V W X Y Z #
 
     
ChartitNOW
The Complete Lean Shop
 
Glossary - P
 

P Chart - A chart used to monitor proportion defective.

p
chart - (1) A chart used to monitor proportion defective. (2) An attributes control chart that plots the number of items possessing a characteristic of interest. The subgroup size may vary.

PA
- Preventive Action - (See also CA)

Painted Floor -
(1) A lean manufacturing technique to provide visual indications to determine stock levels. Similar to kanban. (2) Colored lines or shapes painted or taped on a floor that provide Visual Cues/Information.

Paper Prototypes
- A series of drawings that are developed by the designer on cad systems and are reviewed by decision makers prior to acceptance.

Paradigm
- A model, or theory or conceptual system. In current use: a way of seeing or thinking which often serves to distort or limit our ability to receive or understand new information or learnings. Senge calls such models of thinking and perception "mental models" in his book the fifth discipline.

Parallel Operation -
A technique to create economy of scale by having two operators work together to perform tasks on either side of a machine. Using this technique reduces the time it takes a single operator to move from one side to the other, making the overall process more efficient. An example of parallel operation is having two people work on a changeover, supplementing each other’s work effort.

Parallel Processing in Focused Teams
- Performing work simultaneously rather than sequentially.

Parameter Design -
 Designing control factors such as product specifications and measurements for optimal product function.

Pareto Analysis - (1) An economic concept identified by Joseph Juran that argues that the majority of quality problems are caused by relatively few causes. This economic concept is called Pareto’s law or the 80/20 rule. Juran dichotomized the population of causes of quality problems as the vital few and the trivial many. (2) A graphical tool for ranking causes from most significant to least significant. It is based on the Pareto principle, which was first defined by Joseph M. Juran in 1950. The principle, named after 19th century economist Vilfredo Pareto, suggests most effects come from relatively few causes; that is, 80% of the effects come from 20% of the possible causes. One of the “seven tools of quality”. (3) Chart used to identify and prioritize problems to be solved. (4) A type of prioritizing proposed by Joseph Juran, named for economist/sociologist Wilfredo Pareto.

Pareto Chart
- (1) Chart used to identify and prioritize problems to be solved. (2) A Pareto chart is a bar chart for ranking aspects of a problem. Typically, a few aspects make up a significant portion of the problem while many trivial aspects exist.

Pareto Diagram
- Focuses on efforts or the problems that have the greatest potential for improvement by showing relative frequency and/or size in a descending bar graph. Based on the proven pareto principle: 20% of the sources cause 80% of any problems.

Pareto Principle
- aka Pareto Principle 80:20 Rule or 80 20 Rule

Pareto, Vilfredo
- An Italian economist and sociologist, known for his application of mathematics to economic analysis and for his theory of the 'circulation of elites'.

Pareto’s Law (the 80/20 rule) -
 80 percent of the problems are a result of 20 percent of the causes.

Parking Lot
- A term used in meetings that refers to a flip-chart or whiteboard where topics that are off-the-subject are “parked” with the agreement that these topics will be candidates for the agenda in a future meeting.

Part 820
- See FDA 21 CFR Part 820

Partnering
- An approach to selling in foreign markets that involves the collaborative effort of two organizations.

Partnership/Alliance -
Both a strategy and a formal relationship between a supplier and a customer that engenders cooperation for the benefit of both parties.

Parts Per Million (PPM) - A method of stating the performance of a process in terms of actual nonconforming material, which can include rejected, returned or suspect material in the calculation.

Passive Analysis
- Data collected and analyzed as the process is currently performing, without adjustments to the process, to determine kpivs.

Passive Data
- Gathering this occurs when the customer initiates the data gathering for a firm such as filling out a customer complaint card or sending an e-mail. The firm provides the mechanism for feedback, the customer must initiate the use of the mechanism.

Passive Data Gathering -
 This occurs when the customer initiates the data gathering for a firm such as filling out a customer complaint card or sending an e-mail. The firm provides the mechanism for feedback, the customer must initiate the use of the mechanism.

Passively Solicited Customer Feedback
- A method of soliciting customer feedback that is left to the customer to initiate, such as filling out a restaurant complaint card or calling a toll-free complaint line.

Pay-for-learning programs - Programs that involve compensating employees for their knowledge and skills rather than singularly for the specific jobs they ­perform.

PDCA
- Plan, Do, Check, Act

PDCA cycle -
See “plan-do-check-act cycle.” A strategy used to achieve breakthrough improvements in safety, quality, morale, delivery cost, and other critical business objectives.

PDSA
- Plan, Do, Study, Act, (see Shewhart Cycle) - A method for learning and for improvement. Also described as Plan, Try, Observe, Act (on observations). Popularized in Japan as Plan, Do, Check, Act, or PDCA. Deming prefers study rather than check in order to emphasize the importance of learning in improvement.

Perceived Quality -
 A dimension of quality identified by David Garvin that refers to a subjective assessment of a product’s quality based on criteria defined by the observer.

Percent Chart
- A control chart for evaluating the stability of a process in terms of the percent of the total number of units in a sample in which an event of a given classification occurs. Also known as proportion chart.

Performance
- A dimension of quality that refers to the efficiency in which a product performs its intended purpose. Systemic thinking recognizes that "performance" as observed or measured is the consequence of many factors and is rarely attributable just to the individual or group most closely associated with the process or event [see x + (xy) = 8].

Performance Benchmarking
- A type of benchmarking that allows initiator firms to compare themselves against benchmark firms on performance issues such as cost structures, various types of productivity performance, speed of concept to market, and quality measures.

Performance Standard -
The metric against which a complete action is compared.

Performance -
 A dimension of quality that refers to the efficiency in which a product performs its intended purpose.

Performing
- The fourth stage of team development, where a mutually supportive, steady state is achieved.

PERT
- Project Evaluation and Review Technique

PERT Charts -
Using an activity plan as its basis, the PERT Chart is used to define the critical path of a project. Used after an activity plan has been created to show the tasks needed to complete the activity and their relative timing. Also used during the implementation of the project to monitor the status. The project team should keep a constant eye on the critical path. This is the shortest amount of time that the implementation can be completed in. If any task on the critical path slips, then the timing of the entire implementation will slip.

Physical Environment -
 The geographic area that is in the proximity of an organization.

Physical Transformation Task -
Taking a specific product from raw materials to a finished product delivered to the customer. Also see “value stream” and “information flow.”

Pitch -
The pace and flow of a product.

Plan-do-check-act (PDCA) cycle -
(1) A four-step process for quality improvement. In the first step (plan), a way to effect improvement is developed. In the second step (do), the plan is carried out, preferably on a small scale. In the third step (check), a study takes place between what was predicted and what was observed in the previous step. In the last step (act), action is taken on the causal system to effect the desired change. The plan-do-check-act cycle is sometimes referred to as the Shewhart cycle, because Walter A. Shewhart discussed the concept in his book Statistical Method From the Viewpoint of Quality Control, and as the Deming cycle, because W. Edwards Deming introduced the concept in Japan. The Japanese subsequently called it the Deming cycle. Also called the plan-do-study-act (PDSA) cycle.

Plan-Do-Check-Act aka PDCA
- PDCA - A cycle for process improvement pioneered by w. E. Deming. aka Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA)

Plan-Do-Study-Act
- PDSA - A quality improvement process cycle pioneered by Walter Shewhart and used by W.E. Deming. 1) A plan to effect improvement is developed. 2) The plan is carried out, preferably on a small scale. 3) The effects of the plan are observed 4) the results are studied to determine what was learned and what can be predicted.

Point Kaizen -
See “process kaizen.”

Point of Use -
A technique that ensures people have exactly what they need to do their jobs—work instructions, parts, tools and equipment—where and when they need them.

Poisson Distribution -
A discrete probability distribution that expresses the probability of a number of events occurring in a fixed time period if these events occur with a known average rate, and are independent of the time since the last event.

Poka Yoke
- Process or Product Mistake Proofing OR Japanese term that means mistake proofing. A pokayoke device is one that prevents incorrect parts from being made or assembled or easily identifies a flaw or error.

Policy Deployment - The selection of goals and projects to achieve the goals, designation of people and resources for project completion and establishment of project metrics. Also see “hoshin kanri.”

Policy - An overarching plan (direction) for achieving an organization’s goals.

Population
- (1) All possible measurements on a part, or on a process throughout history, i.e. A whole set of data. (2) A statistical term referring to the collection of measurements of a characteristic that could be made on the items in a frame or list.

Positive Recall
- The ability to trace items forward and backward. The ability to trace the origin of non-inspected materials or product that enter a process through an approved procedure exception; or any use of quality system documentation to recall any documented component or activity.

Positively Skewed Distribution - A distribution of data where most of the data appears on the left hand side of the distribution and then tails off to the right. Also known as a skewed right distribution.

Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc
- Latin for "after this, therefore because of this." A logical fallacy in which correlation between two or more variables is mistakenly interpreted as a causal relationship: B followed A, therefore A caused B. In manufacturing terms, operator A produced parts for four hours without producing any defectives, but operator B took over and x number of defectives were produced. The fact that there is a correlation between operator B’s arrival and the production of defectives doesn’t necessarily mean that operator B was the cause of the problems—there might have been other factors at work, such as material, tool wear, machine maintenance, etc.

Pp
- (1) The Pp index is used to summarize a system's performance in meeting two-sided specification limits (upper and lower). (2) Pp is a capability index, similar to Cp, that is a measure of process performance. Pp tells how well a system can meet two-sided specification limits, assuming that the average is centered on the target value. It is calculated with the actual sigma (using the actual individual values) rather than the estimated sigma. A Pp larger than 1 indicates that the process variation is narrower than the specification.

PPAP - Production Part Approval Process

Ppk - Similar to Cpk, Ppk is a capability index that indicates whether a process is capable of meeting two-sided specification limits. However, Ppk uses actual standard deviation to calculate the process variation, whereas Cpk uses an estimated standard deviation. The target value is taken into account with Ppk, so the system does not have be center on the target value to be useful. A Ppk greater than 1 indicates that the process can meet the specification.

PPM
- Parts Per Million - Usually an expression of Defect Rate in the automotive world.

Ppl - A capability index similar to Cpl in that it compares the variation in the process to the lower specification. However, Ppl uses standard deviation to calculate the process variation, whereas Cpl uses an estimated standard deviation. A Ppl greater than 1 indicates the process is capable of meeting the lower specification.

Ppu - A capability index similar to Cpu in that it compares the variation in the process to the upper specification. However, Ppu uses standard deviation to calculate the process variation, whereas Cpu uses an estimated standard deviation. A Ppu greater than 1 indicates the process is capable of meeting the upper specification.

PQC - Product Quality Characteristic (usually found on Engineering drawing)

Pr - A capability ratio similar to Cr in that it compares the variation in a process with the width of a two-sided specification. However, Pr uses standard deviation to calculate the process variation, whereas Cr uses an estimated standard deviation. It is the inverse of Pp.

Precision
- The amount of "scatter" in a collection of measurements. A quantitative measure of precision requires the measurement system be in statistical control. Note that "precision" does not mean that the measurements are at or near a desired target...Only how tightly grouped they are. OR The aspect of measurement that addresses repeatability or consistency when an identical item is measured several times.

Presidential Audits
- Annual audits where the president leads the quality audit.

Prevention
- Working to improve the process so it is likely that problems or defects will be avoided and will not have to be addressed by inspection (see detection) and rework.

Prevention cost -
(1) The cost incurred by actions taken to prevent a nonconformance from occurring; one element of cost of quality or cost of poor quality. (2) Costs associated with preventing defects and imperfections from occurring. (3) Costs incurred to keep failure and appraisal costs to a minimum.

Prevention versus detection -
A term used to contrast two types of quality activities. Prevention refers to activities for preventing nonconformances in products and services. Detection refers to activities for detecting nonconformances already in products and services. Another phrase to describe this distinction is “designing in quality versus inspecting in quality.”

Preventive action - Action taken to remove or improve a process to prevent potential future occurrences of a nonconformance. Long term cost/risk weighted action taken to prevent a problem from occurring, based on an understanding of the product or process.

Preventive Maintenance (PM) - Maintaining scheduled up-keep and improvement to equipment so equipment can actually improve with age.

Prioritization Grid
- A tool used to make decisions based on multiple criteria.

Probability
- The chance of something happening. Calculated from the number of occurrences divided by number of times that occurrence could have occurred. OR the likelihood of occurrence of an event, action or item.

Probability Density Function
- The chance that a continuous random variable is in any range of values can be calculated as the area under a curve over that range of values. The curve is the probability density function of the random variable. For example, the probability density function of a random variable with a standard normal distribution is the normal curve. Only continuous random variables have probability density functions.

Probability of Rejection -
The probability that a lot will be rejected.

Probability Sample
- A sample drawn from a population using a random mechanism so that every element of the population has a known chance of ending up in the sample.

Problem Solving
- A process for responding to an unacceptable condition in order to make it acceptable. In many cases, this means returning conditions to their prior state. In such cases, problem solving can be distinguished from improvement because improvement's aim would be to change the conditions to a more desirable state, or to work on preventing or reducing the severity or frequency of the problem. OR the act of defining a problem; determining the cause of the problem; identifying, prioritizing and selecting alternatives for a solution; and implementing a solution.

Problem Statement -
To define a problem for a problem-solving team. Once the team has been formed, they should create or be given a problem statement to direct their problem-solving efforts. To help clarify the direction whenever the team seems to be moving off-course. Some organizations have the leadership team create the problem statement and use that to determine team membership.

Procedure -
The steps in a process and how these steps are to be performed for the process to fulfill a customer’s requirements; usually documented.

Process
- (1) The interaction of materials, machines/tools, methods and people together in an environment to produce a product or result. (2) A process is the combination of people, equipment, materials, methods, and environment that produce output—a given product or service. The words process and system are often used interchangeably.

Process Average Quality -
Expected or average value of process quality.

Process Benchmarking - A type of benchmarking that focuses on the observation of business processes including process flows, operating systems, process technologies, and the operation of target firms or departments.

Process Capability
- (1) A statistical measure of the inherent process variability for a given characteristic. (2) a measurement of the variability in a process to some specification criteria. (3) the number of standard deviations that will fit between the target value and the specification limit, i.e. A process with 6 sigma capability can fit 6 standard deviations between the target and the upper or lower specification limit. A higher value indicates a more capable process. (4) Process capability is the 6 sigma range of common cause variation for statistically stable processes only. Sigma is usually estimated by R-bar/d2.

Process Capability Index - aka Cpk
- (1) A measurement of process capability shown as a ratio of the distance between the specification limits and the process mean to the process variation. To have a capability of at least 1, a process must be in statistical control and on target. (2) The value of the tolerance specified for the characteristic divided by the process capability. Cpk and cp are common types of indices.

Process Capability Index -
The value of the tolerance specified for the characteristic divided by the process capability. The several types of process capability indexes include the widely used Cpk and Cp.

Process Charts -
 Tools for monitoring process stability.

Process Control -
The method for keeping a process within boundaries; the act of minimizing the variation of a process.

Process Decision Program Chart
- A tool that is used to help brainstorm possible contingencies or problems associated with the implementation of some program or improvement.

Process Flow Diagram -
A depiction of the flow of materials through a process, including any rework or repair operations; also called a process flow chart.

Process Improvement Team -
A structured group often made up of cross functional members who work together to improve a process or processes. OR teams that are involved in identifying opportunities for improving select pro-cesses in a firm.

Process Improvement Teams - Teams that are involved in identifying opportunities for improving select pro­cesses in a firm.

Process Improvement -
The application of the plan-do-check-act cycle (see listing) to processes to produce positive improvement and better meet the needs and expectations of customers.

Process Kaizen -
Improvements made at an individual process or in a specific area. Sometimes called “point kaizen.”

Process Management -
(1) The pertinent techniques and tools applied to a process to implement and improve process effectiveness, hold the gains and ensure process integrity in fulfilling customer requirements. (2) Also called Business Process Quality Management or Reengineering. The concept of defining macro and micro processes, assigning ownership, and creating responsibilities of the owners. Modifying, altering, reshaping, redesigning any business/production process, work method or management style to deliver greater value.

Process Map - (1) A type of flowchart depicting the steps in a process and identifying responsibility for each step and key measures. (2) A work flow diagram which depicts the elements of a work flow often using time, people, and machine information to illustrate tasks and results. (3) A visual representation of the workflow either within a process - or an image of the whole operation. One differentiates between "30,000 feet overviews", "Medium image" or "homing in", "zooming in", "Micro Map" &c. A good Process Map should allow people unfamiliar with the process to understand the interaction of causes during the workflow. A good Process Map should contain additional information relating to the Six Sigma project i.e. information per critical step about input and output variables, time, cost, DPU value.

Process Mapping
- Illustrated description of how things get done, which enables participants to visualize an entire process and identify areas of strength and weaknesses. It helps reduce cycle time and defects while recognizing the value of individual contributions.

Process Measurables - These are indicators, which directly measure the performance of key processes that affect customer expectations. Specific actions can be taken to improve the performance of these indicators, which in turn should improve the performance of the result measurables.

Process Owner -
The person who coordinates the various functions and work activities at all levels of a process, has the authority or ability to make changes in the process as required and manages the entire process cycle to ensure performance effectiveness.

Process Performance - The process performance is the 6 sigma range of inherent variation for statistically stable processes only, where sigma is usually estimated by the sample standard deviation.

Process Performance Management (PPM) -
The overseeing of process instances to ensure their quality and timeliness; can also include proactive and reactive actions to ensure a good result.

Process Quality Audit
- An analysis of elements of a process and appraisal of completeness, correctness of conditions, and probable effectiveness.

Process Quality -
The value of percentage defective or of defects per hundred units in product from a given process. Note: The symbols “p” and “c” are commonly used to represent the true process average in fraction defective or defects per unit; and “l00p” and “100c” the true process average in percentage defective or in defects per hundred units.

Process Re-Engineering -
(1) A discipline that uses a set of tools to analyze a company's practices and evaluate them as compared to "Best-In-Class" companies for the purpose of improving those practices. (2) A strategy directed toward major rethinking and restructuring of a process; often referred to as the “clean sheet of paper” approach.

Process -
(1) A results driven, formula based, set of activities that produces an outcome. Alternate Definition: A series of activities that collectively accomplish a distinct objective. (2) A set of interrelated work activities characterized by a set of specific inputs and value added tasks that make up a procedure for a set of specific outputs.

Producer’s Risk
- The risk associated with rejecting a lot of material that has acceptable quality.

Product
- A tangible good that is produced for a customer. A result of a completed process. The product may be a physical item or the result of a group process such as a decision or a plan.

Product Benchmarking
- A type of benchmarking that firms employ when designing new products or upgrades to current products. Also see Benchmarking.

Product Data Management -
 A method for gathering and evaluating product-related data.

Product Design and Evaluation -
 Activities that include the definition of the product architecture and the design, production, and testing of a system (including its subassemblies) for production.

Product Design Engineering -
 A form of engineering that involves activities associated with concept development needs specification, final specification, and final design of a product.

Product Idea Generation
- The process of generating product ideas from external and internal sources.

Product Liability -
 The risk a manufacturer assumes when there is a chance that a consumer could be injured by the manufacturer’s product.

Product Manufacture
- Delivery, and use stages of the supply chain.

Product manufacture, delivery, and use -
 Stages of the supply chain.

Product Marketing and Distribution Preparation -
 The process of developing the marketing-related activities associated with a product or service.

Product or Service Liability -
The obligation of an organization to make restitution for loss related to personal injury, property damage or other harm caused by its product or service.

Product Quality Audit
- A quantitative assessment of conformance to required product characteristics.

Product Traceability -
 The ability to trace a component part of a product back to its original manufacturer.

Product Warranty -
An organization’s stated policy that it will replace, repair or reimburse a buyer for a product if a product defect occurs under certain conditions and within a stated period of time.

Product -
 A tangible good that is produced for a customer.

Product-Based -
 The context of Garvin’s quality dimensions.

Production (Analysis) Board -
A job site board on which hourly production targets are recorded, along with the actual production achieved. Details concerning problems and abnormal conditions are also recorded. Management checks the board hourly, takes steps to prevent recurrence of abnormalities and confirms the positive effects of the job site improvements that have been made. An example of visual management.

Production Part Approval Process (PPAP) -
A Big Three automotive process that defines the generic requirements for approval of production parts, including production and bulk materials. Its purpose is to determine during an actual production run at the quoted production rates whether all customer engineering design record and specification requirements are properly understood by the supplier and that the process has the potential to produce product consistently meeting these requirements.

Production Smoothing -
Keeping total manufacturing volume as constant as possible. Also see “heijunka.”

Productivity Ratios -
 Ratios that are used in measuring the extent to which a firm effectively uses its resources.

Productivity -
(1) A measurement of output for a given amount of input. (2) The scaled amount of benefit realized as derived from inputs.

Profound Knowledge
- See System of Profound Knowledge

Profound knowledge, System of -
Defined by W. Edwards Deming, a system that consists of an appreciation for systems, knowledge of variation, theory of knowledge and understanding of psychology.

Profound Organizational Learning -
 Quality-based learning that occurs as people discover the causes of errors, defects, and poor customer service in a firm.

Project Charter -
 A document showing the purposes, participants, goals, and authorizations for a project.

Project Management -
The application of knowledge, skills, tools and techniques to a broad range of activities to meet the requirements of a particular project. OR ensemble of activities to plan and follow the execution of a project.

Project Scope - Defined and specific project beginning and end points. The more specific the details (what's in-scope and what's out of scope, the less a project may experience "scope creep."

Project Team -
Manages the work of a project. The work typically involves balancing competing demands for project scope, time, cost, risk and quality, satisfying stakeholders with differing needs and expectations and meeting identified requirements.

Proportion Chart
- See Percent Chart

Protocol
- An order or method for performing a particular task or function.

Prototype -
A mock-up of a product or process that is still in design mode.

Prototyping -
 An iterative approach to design in which a series of mock-ups or models are developed until the customer and the designer come to agreement as to the final design.

Pugh Matrix -
 A method of concept selection used to identify conflicting requirements and to prioritize design tradeoff.

Pull System -
An alternative to scheduling individual processes, in which the customer process withdraws the items it needs from a supermarket (see listing) and the supplying process produces to replenish what was withdrawn; used to avoid push. Also see “kanban.”

p-Value
- A p-value > 0.05 means the null hypothesis (that the distribution is normal) is accepted. A p-value < 0.05 means that the null hypothesis is rejected and the distribution is not normal.

Pygmalion Effect
- Recognition that our expectations of an individual can significantly influence that individual's behavior and perceived performance. From George Bernard Shaw's play Pygmalion: "... the difference between a lady and a flower-girl is not how she behaves, but how she's treated. I shall always be a flower girl to Professor Higgins because he treats me as a flower girl and always will; but I know I can be a lady to you because you always treat me as a lady and always will..."