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Planning Project Quality

April 15, 2010

Quality: Characteristic or standard measure of excellence; basic characteristic of something. Quality is a measure of the degree to which something meets a standard.
Jack P. Friedman Barron’s Dictionary of Business Terms, Second Edition

I am teaching a class on Project Quality this Saturday so I am on a bit of a quality jag.  I don’t usually fixate on one particular area, but it is a good review for me as I prepare for class.  So with your indulgence I will proceed.

As with all the Project Management Knowledge Areas, you must plan for quality in your Project Management Plan.  The Project Quality Management plan has inputs and outputs and using specific tools and techniques.  Let’s take a look at the process.

The Project Quality Management plan is created during the planning of the project.  PMBOK* lists the following inputs to the Project Quality Management Plan:

  • Scope Baseline
  • Responsibility Assignment Matrix
  • Budget Baseline
  • Schedule Baseline
  • Risk Register
  • Enterprise environmental factors
  • Organizational Process Assets

According to PMBOK*(2008), we use the following tools and techniques to create the Project Quality plan:

  • Cost benefit analysis
  • Cost of quality
  • Control charts
  • Benchmarking
  • Design of experiments
  • Statistical sampling
  • Flowcharting
  • Proprietary quality management methodologies
  • Additional quality planning tools

PMBOK*(2008)  identifies the following as the outputs of Quality Planning:

  • Quality management plan
  • Quality metrics
  • Quality Checklists
  • Process Improvement plan
  • Project document updates

Quality management is focused on customer satisfaction.  Quality must be planned into our projects, designed and built into our products, services and/or outputs.  Process improvement is a key factor in our overall quality management process.   Quality management  requires the efforts of the project team and the support of management to succeed.


Project Management Institute (2008). A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge Newtown Square, PA: Project Management Institute, Inc.

Quality On Purpose

The Purpose of a Quality Management Plan

* “PMI”, “PMBOK”, “CAPM” and “PMP” are registered marks of the Project Management Institute, Inc.

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