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1540.0 - Quality Management of Statistical Processes Using Quality Gates, Dec 2010  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 23/12/2010  First Issue
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BENEFITS OF QUALITY GATES


The benefits of implementing quality gates outweigh the initial costs associated with their creation. Some of these benefits include:

  • The provision of a model of accountability and responsibility for production processes;
  • The ability to detect problems early on in the process so they can be rectified;
  • Predetermined expectations of acceptable levels of quality;
  • Documentation and monitoring of issues and actions throughout the production cycle; and
  • The creation of a store of corporate knowledge.

The provision of a model of accountability and responsibility for production processes

Each quality gate contains the roles and responsibilities held by an individual or area which has been agreed to by all stakeholders. It provides a record of when each quality measure is required so that work priorities can be planned. Quality gates are not a tool for placing blame, they engender ownership of the entire statistical process including its quality by the various stakeholders.

The ability to detect problems early on in the process so they can be rectified

Quality gates are placed at strategic places throughout a process to identify errors or problems earlier. The explicit monitoring of the process at these given points in time ensures that known statistical risks are mitigated. Hence, any issues are fixed at early stages in the process rather than only identified at the end when it is often too late to be able to change the impact on the outcome. Efficiencies in both time and money are realised through the earlier detection and resolution of errors. It is more cost effective to fix a problem when it first occurs than at a later date which may involve months of work that will need to be re-done.

Predetermined expectations of acceptable levels of quality

The provision of tolerance or threshold levels allow expectations to be documented well in advance of the process being undertaken. This ensures that quality is not eroded over time because of a continual slight decrease in quality from one statistical process cycle to the next not being identified. Having predetermined expectations and subsequent actions to be undertaken if particular situations arise ensures that quality is maintained and fully considered in potentially stressful situations.

Documentation and monitoring of issues and actions throughout the production cycle

Quality gates ensure issues are closely monitored and documented by functioning as check points where all critical items or documentation are examined to determine whether they meet the requirements for the next stage of processing.

The creation of a store of corporate knowledge

Due to the documentation of issues and actions throughout the production process there is a record of knowledge and information that can be used in future processes. These records provide information on what went wrong and how it was fixed. This information is useful for quality management of subsequent cycles of the process.


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