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Why metrics are key to quality improvement

3 January 2018

Continuous improvement is a buzzword in many industries – and an essential condition of the engineering profession. Finding effective and objective ways to measure the quality of your team’s toils is the secret to doing things smarter and better.

While there are countless ways to measure quality, the following are our top five for engineering project managers.

1. Improving efficiencies

identifying and tracking key processes within a project environment can help you gauge your team’s productivity and find areas where incremental improvements can be made. For example, reducing the number of hours spent on an activity such as product development without compromising the end result may boost the bottom line of your project.

2. Higher quality output

Getting things right the first time, every time, may not be a realistic goal but it’s something to strive for. Multiple engineering changes and revisions can slow a project’s progress and eat into profitability. Studying metrics such as defect rates and the number of revisions can provide insight into the quality of your team’s output.

3. Productive people

Process and quality improvements are obvious factors for engineering project managers to track; the health and happiness of their workforces perhaps less so. But issues with staff can impede the progress of a project or threaten its success. Statistics such as rate of absenteeism and staff turnover within the project team can indicate whether employees are engaged and committed – or simply marking time until a better opportunity arises.

4. Report on quality measures

Reporting helps keep quality measures top-of-mind for any engineering project, and it doesn’t have to be onerous. Collecting data is the key here; while projects vary considerably, it is generally possible to identify common data points that can be constructively tracked, measured and compared. Reporting to organisational leadership and management on a monthly basis is best practice, and will help keep team members focused on quality as an ongoing goal.

5. Education is the edge

In today’s fast-paced professional environment, staying abreast of industry developments and the latest approaches to both measuring and monitoring quality is essential for any ambitious engineering manager.

SCU Online’s Master of Engineering Management can assist you to become a leader and an innovator across any engineering discipline. Delivered by real world and academic leaders, the course curriculum provides the opportunity to augment your technical expertise with the skills and knowledge to manage multi-disciplinary teams, stakeholders, budgets and timelines.

With the flexibility to develop a personalised program and continuous intakes through the year, SCU’s online engineering course can help you position yourself to capitalise on a global wave of infrastructure development projects.

To learn more, speak to one of our expert Student Enrolment Advisors on 1300 589 882.