Project Quality Management Chapter 8 Discussion Questions
Project Quality Management CHAPTER 8 DISCUSSION QUESTIONS Q1. Discuss some of the examples of poor quality in information technology projects presented in the “What Went Wrong? ” section. Could most of these problems have been avoided? Why do you think there are so many examples of poor quality in information technology projects? Answer: Many of these problems could be avoided by performing better quality management.
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One problem is that software and hardware is hitting the market too fast, so people selling these might be more concerned about money than safety or wellbeing of the consumers or the company in the long term. Q2. What are the main processes included in planning project quality management? Answer: The project quality management processes include planning quality, performing quality assurance, and performing quality control. Planning quality: identifying which quality standards are relevant to the project and how to satisfy them; a metric is a standard of measurement * Performing quality assurance: periodically evaluating overall project performance to ensure the project will satisfy the relevant quality standards * Performing quality control: monitoring specific project results to ensure that they comply with the relevant quality standards Q3. How do functionality, system outputs, performance, reliability, and maintainability requirements affect quality planning?
Answer: All of these factors affect quality planning because they will drive the requirements that need to be met to ensure quality. * Functionality is the degree to which a system performs its intended function * Features are the system’s special characteristics that appeal to users * System outputs are the screens and reports the system generates * Performance addresses how well a product or service performs the customer’s intended use * Reliability is the ability of a product or service to perform as expected under normal conditions * Maintainability addresses the ease of performing maintenance on a product Q4.
What are benchmarks, and how can they assist in performing quality assurance? Describe typical benchmarks associated with a college or university. Answer: Benchmarking generates ideas for quality improvements by comparing specific project practices or product characteristics to those of other projects or products within or outside the performing organization. Benchmarks help you compare project practices or product characteristics to others within or outside the organization. Typical benchmarks with a college or university include rankings, student/faculty ratio, acceptance rate, graduation rate, percentage of faculty with Ph.
D. s, etc. Q5. What are the three main categories of outputs of quality control? Answer: * The main outputs of quality control are: * Acceptance decisions * Rework * Process adjustments * There are Seven Basic Tools of Quality that help in performing quality control Q6. Provide examples of when you would use the Seven Basic Tools of Quality on an information technology project. Answer: The seven tools are: * Cause and Effect Diagrams used to identify the underlying symptoms of a problem or “effect” as a means of finding the root cause. Pareto Charts: Based upon the Pareto Principle that states that 80% of a problem is attributable to 20% of its causes, or inputs, a Pareto Chart organizes and displays information in order to show the relative importance of various problems or causes of problems. * Flow Charts: A flow chart is a visual representation of a process. It is not statistical, but is used to piece together the actual process as it is carried out, which quite often varies from how the process owner imagines it is. Seeing it visually makes identifying both inefficiencies and potential improvements easier. Check sheet: Also known as Data Collection sheets and Tally charts. Check sheets are non-statistical and relatively simple. They are used to capture data in a manual, reliable, formalised way so that decisions can be made based on facts. As the data is collected, it becomes a graphical representation of itself. Areas for improvement can then be identified, either directly from the check sheet, or by feeding the data into one of the other seven basic tools. * Scatter Plots: A Scatter Diagram, or Chart, is used to identify whether there is a relationship between two variables.
It does not prove that one variable directly affects the other, but is highly effective in confirming that a relationship exists between the two. * Control (Run) Charts: They are reasonably complex statistical tools that measure how a process changes over time. By plotting this data against pre-defined upper and lower control limits, it can be determined whether the process is consistent and under control, or if it is unpredictable and therefore out of control. * Histograms: Histograms are a form of bar chart.
They are used to measure the frequency distribution of data that is commonly grouped together in ranges or “bins”. Most commonly they are used to discern frequency of occurrence in long lists of data. Q7. Discuss the history of modern quality management. How have experts such as Deming, Juran, Crosby, and Taguchi affected the quality movement and today’s use of Six Sigma? Answer: These experts have made quality a visible criterion that companies strived to achieve. Awards have been established to seek quality and reward those who have achieved it.
Quality projects have been used to meet customer expectations instead of only company needs. A wider scope of what quality is and isn’t has been developed to provide benchmarking criteria for businesses. Pointing out the cost of poor quality will give motivation to companies and increase their desire for quality. U. S. businesses observed BOTH the emphasis on quality in other nations AND those nations’ successes in the marketplace. It was the economic success attributable to the emphasis on quality that made U. S. companies sit up and take notice. Q8.
Discuss three suggestions for improving information technology project quality that were not made in this chapter. Answer: Some ideas would be providing better training for people in information technology to produce better quality, providing incentives for meeting quality goals, establishing minimum quality requirements for specific IT products, and so on. Q9. Describe three different types of software that can assist in project quality management. Answer: You can use spreadsheet software, databases, charting software, statistical software, and other specialized software for quality management.