What is Quality Control?

What is Quality Control?

Let's start with a definition of quality control from the American Society for Quality (ASQ)...

Quality Control consists of the observation techniques and activities used to fulfill requirements for quality.

You can think of quality control as the activities that are used to evaluate whether your product or service meets the quality requirements specified for your project. It's important to note that project quality control is performed throughout the project.

The quality requirements are defined during the quality planning process. They include both project processes and product goals.

Quality Control Tools & Techniques

Some of the tools and techniques you can use to perform quality control include...

  • Cause and Effect Diagram (i.e. Fishbone Diagrams)
  • Control Chart
  • Flow Chart
  • Pareto Chart
  • Histogram
  • Run Chart
  • Scatter Diagram
  • Statistical Sampling
  • Inspection

For some of these tools, it is helpful to have a basic understanding of sampling and probability.

These quality control tools and techniques can help you in three ways...

  • Confirm that your project is meeting the quality standards
  • Provide a basis for corrective action
  • Provide feedback about your quality assurance process

Quality Control vs Quality Assurance

Many people get confused between quality control and quality assurance.

To differentiate between the two, remember that quality control is about evaluating whether the product of your project meets the quality standards. It is performed after the product has been completed.

Quality assurance, on the other hand, is about ensuring that the product is produced in the right way. It is proactive and concerned about the processes and activities during the products development.

Hopefully you can now answer the question, "What is Quality Control?" as well as distinguish between quality control and quality assurance.

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