Unit 17:  Quality and Process Improvement

Unit code                           H/615/1491

Unit level                           QCF Level 4/ NFQ Level 6

Credit value                       15


Quality has always been the key to business success and survivability, but it requires organisations to allocate a lot of effort and resources to achieve it. The key to providing quality services and designing top quality products lies in the strength and effectiveness of the processes used in their development; processes which must be constantly reviewed to ensure they operate as efficiently, economically and as safely as possible.

This unit introduces students to the importance of quality assurance processes in a manufacturing or service environment and the principles and theories that underpin them. Topics included in this unit are: tools and techniques used to support quality control, attributes and variables, testing processes, costing modules, the importance of qualifying the costs related to quality, international standards for management (ISO 9000, 14000, 18000), European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM), principles, tools and techniques of Total Quality Management (TQM) and implementation of Six Sigma.

On successful completion of this unit students will be able to illustrate the processes and applications of statistical process, explain the quality control tools used to apply costing techniques, identify the standards expected in the engineering environment to improve efficiency and examine how the concept of Total Quality Management and continuous improvement underpins modern manufacturing and service environments.


Learning Outcomes

By the end of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Illustrate the applications of statistical process control when applied in an industrial environment to improve efficiency.
  2. Analyse cost effective quality control tools.
  3. Determine the role of standards in improving efficiency, meeting customer requirements and opening up new opportunities for trade.
  4. Analyse the importance of Total Quality Management and continuous improvement in manufacturing environments.