The name of the program itself communicates its primary goal and objective, zero defects.
In this eighth installment I'm addressing the next statement from Philip B. Crosby's Quality Is Free: “A successful program must be conducted under the name Zero Defects.” If you haven't already answered the to the IQ test, please take the time to go back and read them to test your knowledge of the concept of Zero Defects, related to construction programs and Enterprise Quality Management in the construction industry.
Here is the answer to the eighth of ten statements: “A successful program must be conducted under the name Zero Defects.”
ANSWER = TRUE
Crosby debates that the term Zero Defects is a standard term, generally accepted across all industries, including the construction and capital projects industries. Zero Defects means that the work is put in place, in accordance with the contractual requirements and owner’s project requirements (OPR), in the first place. The work is done right the first time. No rework is required, to complete missing work or to correct nonconformant or deficient work already put in place.
“Work improvement plans” (WIPs) or “Excellence in effort plans” (EEPs), and many other similar workforce improvement and motivation plans and programs beg the issue, as Crosby asserts, and fail to define the primary goal and objective. The terms “Work improvement plans” and “Excellence in effort plans” flail about in a quagmire of glittering generalities, whereas “Zero Defects” is concise and direct. No defects, period.
Zero Defects is the name of the program. The name of the program itself communicates its primary goal and objective, zero defects. Clear and simple. The goal is not to perform 92% or X% of the work to an acceptable standard the first time, and then to measure performance to a predefined benchmark of percentage conformance, with 8% or Y% of the work to a deficient standard and accordingly requiring rework. The goal is 100% of the work to an acceptable standard and conformant the first time, with zero defects and zero rework.
As a note, Crosby highlights that management may opt to define the standards in the quality awareness programs, which are an introduction to a Zero Defects program. Management tailors the program to the requirements of the projects and contracts and accordingly defines the details, but Crosby maintains that the program must be named the Zero Defects program.
Here are some questions for readers about the term Zero Defects:
- Do you agree or disagree with Crosby’s assertion that a Zero Defects program must be conducted under the same name, in the construction and capital projects industries? Why or why not?
- Is the name “Zero Defects” readily understandable to all personnel, in your company and in your partners’ companies, from laborers and trades through to superintendents, engineers, managers and executives?
- Do you have a quality program in place today?
- If yes, does your quality program use the name “Zero Defects”?
- If not, how willing are you and your colleagues to use the name “Zero Defects”?
- Are zero defects attainable, or ought a company revert to a more modest (and perhaps meager) goal, for example 92% conformance and 8% nonconformance, the first time?