This is one of the fundamentals of quality management systems. The use of statistical techniques can help in understanding variability, and thereby can help organizations to solve problems and improve effectiveness and efficiency. These techniques also facilitate better use of available data to assist in decision making. Variability can be observed in the behaviour and outcome of many activities, even under conditions of apparent stability. Such variability can be observed in measurable characteristics of products ad processes, and may be seen to exist at various stages over the life cycle of products from market research to customer service ad final disposal. Statistical techniques can help to measure, describe, analyse, interpret and model such variability, even with a relatively limited amount of data. Statistical analysis of such data can help to provide a better understanding of the nature, extent and causes of variability, thus helping to solve ad even prevent problems that may result from such variability, and to promote continual improvement.
Guidance on statistical techniques in a quality management system is given in ISO/TR 10017.


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