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Juran and Quality

Several key individuals played a significant part in the creation of the movement to develop the ideas and usage of quality in the production of goods and services. Joseph Juran was one of these main contributors. His main efforts came in the form of the Quality Trilogy and the Quality Roadmap. Each of these approaches helped to set the foundational concepts and practices of achieving quality for customers.

Juran began with a basic definition of quality:
“Quality is conformance or fulfillment of customer requirements”
The Quality Trilogy states that there exist three basic stages or aspects of achieving quality:

  • Quality Planning: quality does not happen by accident
  • Quality Control: checks and balances, structure and governance ensure quality
  • Quality Improvement: we must always seek a better way to do things
Once we have our basic aspects laid out we can then create a “roadmap” or plan for attaining quality. For the delivery of goods and services we could try to create this roadmap each and every time we produce a good or service. However, in the spirit of following best practices, why not use the roadmap that Juran laid out for us?

  • Identify the customers
    • This can be more difficult than it seems. Begin with the end user and work backwards towards Operations
  • Determine the needs of those customers
    • Differentiate between needs (requirements) and demand (frequencies, volumes and durations)
  •  Translate those needs into our language 
    • In the context of ITSM that is a combination of business and technical languages
  • Develop a product that can respond to those needs
    • Design with the end user in mind
  • Optimize the product features so as to meet our needs as well as customer needs
    • Find a win-win balance for both parties
  • Develop a process which is able to produce the product
    • Make it repeatable, standardized, consistent and controlled
  • Optimize the process
    • Continual Service and Process Improvement help here
  • Prove that the process can produce the product under operating conditions
    • Gather data once the process is running , not before, then use it for improvement not punishment
  • Transfer the process to Operations
    • Follow these steps in an iterative approach to continue to drive towards quality
Many of you may recognize these steps since they are woven into ITIL best practices. ITIL serves us not only because it has been proven in the modern day, but it finds its basis in long-standing proven methods such as the work of Joseph Juran.


Juran Institute said…
Thanks for this excellent overview of Dr. Juran and his work! My name is Brian Solomon, and I'm the Communications Director for the Juran Institute, the quality consulting firm founded by Dr. Juran. Your readers can find out more about what we're doing by visiting our website,, or our blog, The Big Q.

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