Introducing “Quality during Design”

I want to introduce a new website and podcast blog community for designers in product development. Quality during is especially for people involved in designing products. The goal is to share resources, practical advice, and problem-solving techniques to add quality thinking throughout the design cycle.

We benefit when quality methods are integrated early into the design process, and designers are in one of the best positions to make that happen! I believe (and have seen) that this can lead to products that are safer, more reliable, and more intuitive to use; a development process that avoids surprises; and cost savings through doing the right thing early. 

Everyone understands the concept of Quality. What’s evolving are the tools and initiatives to promote Quality thinking earlier and in more places. There is a mountainous amount of quality topics, tools, certifications, and jargon. And, they’ve evolved from military standards to manufacturing to all processes: hospital procedures, schools, service industries, and large and small companies. 

In addition, Quality as today’s career is somewhat new. Most folks in Quality (like Quality Assurance, Quality Management, Quality Engineering, Quality Auditing, and Reliability Engineering) chose to study it on their own. They’re folks that started their jobs as something else: a doctor, a teacher, an engineer, or an assembly line worker. Through their work, they discovered Quality as a career option that inspired them and that they liked, so they adopted it. They used workplace mentors and professional societies to guide them through self-education. 

I hear the Quality-career folks say, “I wish they had involved me earlier.” And, I hear designers say, “Oh, I didn’t know I could ask for that analysis to get me that information.” 

Designers don’t have to learn how to do it all. But, they can understand the methods available and how they can use them to make decisions. This includes asking a Quality professional to analyze something and then knowing how to act on the results. That’s why I created I don’t get into how to do complex analyses and things like six-sigma projects; that’s what our Quality friends love to do, and there are a ton of other resources out there to help with that. I will share what I know about quality thinking to trim and hone the design process and when to call in a Quality professional so we get our perfect designs. 

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