Friday, 15 February 2013


Assalamualaikum and a very good day I wish to my readers,

This post is meant to be a survey for those who read and follow my blog. Did you find my blog useful and easy to read? I need some encouraging comment from you stating whether I need to continue my "academic blogging" or not? Do leave a comment under this post so I can make decision. =D

Thanks for your time~~


Saturday, 11 August 2012

Quality Tool: Relationship Diagram

Assalamualaikum and a very good day I wish to all readers.

First of all, damn~~ its been so long since I post my blog entry huh? what do you know, its been exactly 6 months ago as my last post was actually on 11/2/12. =D So, without further ado, here's the continuation.

Before I proceed, I would like to remind new readers and new followers that this is academic blog style that I (so called invented?) and you can't find its type in the option. Therefore, read up from the start as the posts are like the trains stops; You need to stop at each place even though its not your destination.

So, enough with my random babbling, here goes nothing~~!

Previously, I have used my experience and knowledge in my ICC group project that was conducted in PSB DECO and like wise, so does its continuation. Where were we before? oh yes, the affinity diagram for brainstorming.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Brainstorming tools such as affinity diagram is good for getting new and unrestricted ideas but some of them might be repeated and related. Hence, in order to narrow it down and get a concrete, solid ideas...... we need to identify which one of all those points are the ROOTS. Why? SIMPLE! Once we solve the root, we can get the above the ground things too! If its problem that we analyzed (to improve, there must be a problem first no?). the ROOTS that we found would be root cause! And, by solving this one root cause, we could prevent a lot more problems.

So, here's the steps to perform Relationship Diagram:

Example: How to show the relationship between each cards

  1. Put / Spread out the cards used in Affinity Diagram (or you may copied it onto a large paper).
  2. Through consensus of your team mate, link those cards. For example, A would definitely give rise to B or Y would occur from the combination of both W & Z. The A, B, Y, W and Z in this example are all the cards.
  3. Do the linkage with an arrow where it will point from "this causes this". As per previous example, it will be like above there.
  4. Once ALL of the cards have been like that, double check with team members for any left out relationship. Don't be afraid to have a messy, intersecting lines of arrows as the more of it, the better.
  5. Next, numbered down each and every element of the cards. For example, you have 10 cards from affinity diagram, so you would definitely have 10 cards to be number from 1 - 10.
  6. Write down a table with 3 columns. First one would be for the cards number, followed by arrows in and arrows out.
  7. Fill up the arrows in and out. E.g: At card no 5, there are 8 other cards that will causes it so the arrows in would be 8. While on the other hand, the same no 5 card actually causes another (one only) card and thus, the arrows out would 1. Repeat it till the table is completed.
  8. The last and final step, identify the highest no. for both arrows in and out. Before we finish, remember again what is the purpose of the relationship diagram, to find the ROOTS. So, ask yourself do u need cause or effect? Highest no of arrows out would be the ROOT CAUSE while the highest no of arrows in would be the ROOT EFFECT.
  9. A picture of completed relationship diagram and its table would as follows:

Example: Completed Relationship Diagram

Example: Completed arrows IN and OUT to find ROOT EFFECT


This is the tools used after AFFINITY DIAGRAM to find either root cause or root effect. Root cause to solve problem and root effect to see most benefit (positive) and most wicked problem (negative). Circle, highlight or change colour for ease of presentation.

HINT: Next entry would be the continuation of this and we will then starts to solve the problem in ICC! =D

Saturday, 11 February 2012

7 New Quality Tool: Affinity Diagram

Assalamualaikum and a very good day I wish to you all readers,

As I have promised before, I'm gonna explain the quality tools in a more in-depth and efficient method, via application! So, in my 4th semester in UNIKL MITEC, I'm taking the Innovation and Creativity Circle (ICC) competition subject. It's basically a mini convention of quality improvements among students taking the subject.

Luckily for my friends and I, we have given the opportunity to apply ICC into a real life industry in a certain company. That company is~~~~~ PSB Decorations Sdn Bhd. For more information about this company, you may refer PSB facebook and PSB blog @ website. HOWEVER, due to P&C and copyright possibilities, I won't give out the examples below from the real data. Instead I would simulate the application in another industry.


As I mentioned in my previous post, there are 7 new quality tools and the first one is affinity diagram. Hurm, I'm sure new readers would not be clear on its usage so I'll summed it up as a tool for BRAINSTORMING.

How to use it? I'll give example base on a restaurant establishment (product + service sector)

  1. Select the circle members. The best would be several member from a different department. For example: one manager, one supervisor, one waiter/waitress, one bartender, one cook, one cleaner/dishwasher guy , one accountant and one boss/board member.
  2. Select the idea/ issue/ problem/ complaint/ improvement to be made. For example: cleanliness issue; ministry of health coming for a check up.
  3. Give everyone a few set of small paper to write down. You may set the limit to be 10, 30, 100, 200 or what ever number u desire. The higher the number, the better. I would suggest to try 5 paper for each persons for starters.
  4. Ask everyone to write down ONE idea on EACH paper. The idea would depends on the issue and purpose. It may be an improvement or causes or advantages or disadvantages or anything you desire or expected. For example: improvement or ways to improve the cleanliness level in the restaurant.
  5. After some consideration and everyone finished writing, collect the paper @ cards and shuffle them. Then, lay out all of them one by one on a table or a piece of board so that everyone can see it.
  6. With everyone consensus, discussion and agreement, lump together ideas that are similar to each other. In addition, write down a heading for them. For example: Ideas are schedule sweeping time, allocate 15 min everyday before opening for everyone to help clean, supervisor regularly check the cleanliness level, randomly asking for feedback from customer. The heading would be schedule for the first two and quality check for the latter two.
  7. Arrange the lumps or groups together systematically with their heading written on top of each groups.
  8. There you go! You have just finished the BRAINSTORMING session and gain a considerable amounts of new and possible ideas!
Nevertheless, I'll give you guys some extra here for another example with picture to show how the Affinity Diagram would look like as below:

So, there you. I hope this post is beneficial on your quest of applying quality in your life. =D Spread the word, share this post if you wanted too. Knowledge is meant to be shared. That's all for this time. Thank You for reading!


Friday, 3 February 2012

Quality Tools: How to use it?

Assalamualaikum and a very good day I wish to you readers.

First of all, I'm sorry for the absence of new entry for so long. The thing is, I was waiting for my Innovation and Creativity Circle (ICC) Competition subject for this semester to further elaborate on the next topic; Quality tools.

So, for those who are new to my academic blog and quality engineering, I'm sure your not familiar yet with the quality tools. Therefore, for this entry, I'll list out the quality tools available first and will further explain them later on. So, let's the class begin! =D

Before we proceed, I would like you all to understand there are actually 14 Quality Tools that are divided into two, basic / 7 quality tools mainly for numerical data and 7 new quality tools mainly for verbal data.

7 Quality Tools:

  1. Flowchart: A diagram of the steps in a process.
  2. Check Sheet: A tool for organizing and collecting data, a tally of problems or other events by category.
  3. Histogram: A chart that shows an empirical frequency distribution.
  4. Pareto Chart: A diagram that arranges categories from highest to lowest frequency of occurrence.
  5. Scatter Diagram: A graph that shows the degree and direction of relationship between two variables.
  6. Control Chart: A statistical chart of time-ordered values of a sample statistic.
  7. Cause and Effect Diagram @ Ishikawa Diagram @ Fish Bone Diagram: A diagram used to organize a search for the cause(s) of a problem.
So, for ease of understanding, I have included how generally each of them look like as below:

So, I'm pretty sure most readers would be familiar with flowchart, histogram, scatter diagram and some, check sheet as we use them in our daily lives and in office. Without further ado, lets move on to the next one.

7 New Quality Tools:

  1. Affinity Diagram.
  2. Relationship Diagram.
  3. Tree Diagram.
  4. Matrix Diagram.
  5. Arrow Diagram.
  6. Process Decision Program  Chart.
  7. Matrix Data Analysis.

However, I would not explain for the new quality tools now since it requires a lengthy explanation. Nevertheless, I will explain them properly in later entry with examples Insya Allah. Thus, stay tune for next entry!

Spoiler Alert!: I will explain these quality tools using my ICC project as example so you guys could learn about ICC and quality tools at the same time! Effective and Efficient eh? =D

Thank You for reading. Prepare yourself for a mind-blowing experience of quality engineering application in my next entry!


Saturday, 1 October 2011

Quality Evolution

Assalamualaikum and a very good day I wish to you all readers. Thanks again for following my blog and to those who recently joined, please follow me if you like my blog. =D

So, today, we're gonna go into a little bit of history of Quality. How does Quality came to be realized and how does it become a profession and later on, a need in every type of business and corporations. Simply put, let's discover the hidden history of QUALITY EVOLUTION.

wow, so that's a very long stages isn't it? Fret not, I will break it down and explains each of them.


  • This is during the era of early manufacturing where blacksmith forge swords one by one and craftsman crafts one by one. Simple said, these individuals (blacksmith and craftsman) is considered as artisan. 
  • The manufacturing process during this age is simply base on the design and specifications by the artisans and as they seems fit. There is no quality control at this age yet. 
  • During this age, mass production (manufacturing) becomes a need. There's many reasons for that such as war, trading and also collections. 
  • Since those reasons have a need for a quality goods and services, inspection was implemented. 
  • However, the inspection during this time was done by the artisan himself. For example, the artisan would decide if the sword forged was acceptable or rework needed to be done.
  • During this time, no guarantee that the good produce would work without fail and there's no needs for assurances yet.
Quality Control:
  • During this era, trading between villages, countries and even continent were expanding exponentially. Hence, some goods were produced in a huge number by a huge number of man power. Unlike before, where only 1 artisan produce the same type of good, this era utilize a few artisans (blacksmiths) to produce multiple (mass) numbers of goods on a continuous base.
  • Therefore, these artisans would not have sufficient resources and time to do the inspection for each goods produced. Thus, a career or profession called "inspector / inspection officer" was created.
  • The only job for this "inspector" is to determine whether the good is accepted or failed. Sometimes, they would recommend rework for the salvageable failed goods.
Statistical Quality Control:
  • Surprisingly, during this era the evolution is done by the Japanese who had recently lost the World War II. There are some sources who said that the Japanese are the one who started to commercialized this concept and other countries then follows the foot steps.
  • SQC is basically the same as Quality Control where the manufacturer (producer) produce the good and there's another person (inspector) who would inspect and determine whether the good is fail or accepted. During this age, the term used is Go and No-Go.
  • The only differences is that the number of product produced through manufacturing is so huge that it is impossible to inspect all of them one by one. That is because, semi-automatic and automatic machinery have been implemented into manufacturing and thus, production goes until thousands goods per day.
  • In order to solve the time-to-inspect problem, SQC utilized sampling techniques (I will further explain this in later posts).
  • Simply said, those sampling techniques would only requires to inspect a sample of the production to determine the whole production go / no-go state.
  • For example, to determine 1000 goods, the inspector only need to inspect 50 out of the 1000 goods only. This saves a lot of time and resources!
Statistical Process Control:
  • The next evolution would solves the problem faced by the manufacturers. Before this, the manufacturer would be responsible for all the cost of failed / re-work products. However, this evolution would emphasize and indulge entirely quality in design stage. 
  • This also means that the design of the product would be inspected to make sure it is quality enough. Other than that, quality control would be done on each processes.
  • For example, there are 5 process needed to produce plastic bottle such as raw material collection and inspection, melting the plastics, blow molding, assembling added values and inspections. So, there would be inspectors for each 5 process to determine go and no-go state of each product that undergoes that process. 
  • By doing so, the manufacturer would be able to minimize the probability of losses and need of reworking after the product is fully assembled. This greatly improves the quality of the product and enhance profits while nearing zero defects.
Total Quality Management:
  • The next and latest evolution of quality is the TQM. In this era, quality have been integrated into the managements. Meaning to say, the quality is no longer the design & specification, process or even the inspection. Quality has been integrated to all the staff / management side.
  • When TQM has been achieved, all level of managements (top managements, supervisors, hard labour workers even the office staffs) must participate and gave their insight on any discussion. In other word, when TQM has been achieved, every decision will compromise and take into consideration of every departments and levels of the company. Therefore, a concrete and solid decision will be selected which everyone is responsible for and induce motivation as everyone had contributed to the decision making.
  • This evolution had eliminated the problem where the decision made before were solely from the top management point of view which usually conform to the customer requirement and lowering cost as low as possible only. Now, with TQM the decision will also take into consideration the opinion of the workers who would assembled it and also the technician who knows best the capabilities of the machinery. 
Continuous Improvement:
  • The current trend of evolution would be the every-changing, ever-evolving quality in our daily lives. As such, more and more improvement would be made which varies from industries since almost every companies or sector would have quality department. 
  • Therefore, these individuals would create the Innovation and Improvement Circle (ICC) which will bring quality of their company to the next level. Further elaboration for ICC will be told later on. 

Well, that's already quite long isn't it? But believe me, it's not the end yet. This is the simplified version of my own understanding on Quality Evolution. Nevertheless, never stop indulging yourself in quality as it is the world in the future. =D

Thank You for reading! Have a nice day. ^_^

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Case Study 1 (My 1st Year work)

Malaysians nowadays have achieved a high living standard where most individuals spend most of their time working. Therefore, they do not have enough time to cook and opt to dine outside. Most Malaysian prefers to go for a fast food restaurant such as Kentucky Fried Chicken, Mc Donalds and also ‘mamak’ restaurant where they can get satisfactory and fast services. In this research, the focus would go for ‘mamak’ restaurant and why they are successful in Malaysia. However, the scope would be from quality product-based and service-based which are the main divisions of quality.

First of all, we could analyze the phenomenon from product-based point of view. Generally, ‘mamak’ restaurant would have a variety of food and drinks available. There are Indian-based food, kampong-style food, western food some even have cakes and malay delicacies as desert. These varieties of food attract different customers at a different time. For example, in the morning and for breakfast, most people would prefer nasi lemak, roti canai, baked bread or a simple curry puff and all these are offered at the restaurant. In the same time, customers would not get bored with the food as they could always try different food every day. Furthermore, some ‘mamak’ restaurants have specialities such as fresh cow milk, fresh goat milk, nan bread, fruit juices and ice blended. Having these specialities improves their attraction values and in the same time, serves as promotion and marketing. Therefore, by having a diverse range of products, ‘mamak’ restaurant managed to attract different type of customers with different preferences at all time; breakfast, lunch, tea time, dinner and supper.

Second reason from product-based point of view, ‘mamak’ restaurant offers simple, halal or clean food with satisfactory taste and presentation. One of the characteristic for quality product is meeting the requirement from user point of view and it has been achieved by almost all ‘mamak’ restaurants. Simple food such as nasi lemak, roti canai, half-boiled egg and baked bread often chosen by customer as it is simple and easy to eat. This holds true for those who have little time to eat or just need a simple food to give energy especially in the morning. Moreover, most ‘mamak’ restaurant owns and presents a halal certificated which came from or approved by Jabatan Kemajuan Islam Malaysia (JAKIM). By showcasing the halal certificate, customer will be pleased and relieved to believe that the foods there are clean and halal. Halal and clean issue does not revolve around muslims only but the whole Malaysian community. Who wants to eat dirty food? Halal certificate does not only prove that the foods are prepared with halal ingredient, but also the way the foods are cooked, presented and preserved. In addition, sometimes, non-muslims also checks if the foods served are halal or not before eating at any restaurant. Lastly, the taste and presentation of the product are at least, satisfactory while some ‘mamak’ restaurants reached good and excellence level. Taste and presentation plays a huge role in quality product and often the main attraction for customers. For example, Air Batu Campur (ABC) with different colours and ice-cream as topping would definitely sells better than a plain, 3-coloured ABC. Other than that, the dish plates that they use are unique and can only be found in ‘mamak’- style restaurant. Most normal restaurant does not have those shining, round dish plates for ‘tosai’ as example. For those reasons; simple food, halal and clean food with satisfactory taste and presentation have became one of the reasons why ‘mamak’ restaurant is successful in Malaysia in product-based point of view.

The second part in this analysis is from the service-based point of view. The first reason is, ‘mamak’ restaurant have a very high availability which create their quality service. The availability came from their 24 hours operating hours, easily found everywhere, sufficient number of employees and spaces and strategic planning. Most ‘mamak’ restaurants are open 24 hours which makes them accessible at anytime. Since different consumers have different meal time preferences, their restaurant will always have customers coming in and out which make their business always running. This can be observed especially in wee hours, morning for breakfast, lunch hours, tea time, dinner time, supper time and even after supper time where people just go there for leisure time with friends and family. In addition, since there are always customer coming in and out, no loss but instead, gains from every operating hours and keep the business running. Hence, ‘mamak’ restaurant became a favourite spot for meals and gathering which makes them successful. Other than that, next facts for the availability would be that they could be found anywhere. Since ‘mamak’ restaurant have grown so much, it is actually possible to find ‘mamak’ restaurant in almost every residency area especially in developed areas. Even though ‘mamak’ community is said to be originated from Penang, they can be found anywhere through Malaysia, including East Malaysia. Even though the restaurant might not be from a same branch, but ‘mamak’ community have made it a norm to open a restaurant everywhere they go and customer always refers them in general, ‘mamak’ restaurant instead of their restaurant name. This is why they are so successful in Malaysia.

Next, with a sufficient number of employees, customer will always have the availability to order product and will always have a clean table to accomodate. This holds true with their great numbers of space where customer will always have a great range of choices to pick their favourite spot and clean table in advanced which earns them a quality service. In addition, they have a quality strategic plan where most of ‘mamak’ restaurant would be in a corner lot which gives them advantage in view and space. Moreover, the parking spaces will be converted to dining tables area which adds to their number of tables available and increase the number of choice for places to sit and will be able to sustain a huge number of customers especially during night time. On the other hand, with huge space, it also offers better privacy where most customers do not like to be seated right next to another customer. It also gives enough space for the waiters to serve the customer and gives a quality service. In addition to have a sufficient number of employees and space, the employees there are very versatile. Some of them could do a few jobs such as a waiter can take orders, sends out the product, clear the tables, cleans the area and in the same time, able to cook the food, mix up the drinks and even do the cashier. Therefore, during the rush or peak hours, ‘mamak’ restaurant very rarely have problems in delivering a quality service. 

            The second reason why ‘mamak’ restaurant is successful in Malaysia is because they have a high team work between colleagues and managements. This can be seen by their coordination of zones. With sufficient number of employees and a huge space, they need to maximise their service by dividing the areas. If one to observe, one will find that the waiters are stationed in a few ‘hot spots’ in the restaurant. Hot spots here could be defined by a place where the waiter will have maximum field of vision to observed new customer coming in and current customer who might wish for a service. As a result, the waiters able to give a quality response needed and consequently, one’s order will always be taken after they are seated. In addition, the cook and drinks mixer will always be waiter-in-standby whenever they do not have orders to be done. Hence, increasing the zone coverage area and consequently, increase the quality service in terms of respond time.

The next evidence for their high team work would be the unity shown by the workers. This can be seen in the uniform that they wear. Some might says that it is normal for workers to have uniform. However, that uniform can be regard as a unity sign when compared to normal restaurant where the workers only wear smart casual clothes. Why would unity be a good service to the customer? This is actually significant for customers to identify the workers especially when they desire a service. In addition, the uniform that they wear includes a cover head apparel; cap and bandana and also apron. These actually contributes to the safety and quality in terms of cleanliness of the product overall. Other than that, with great team work, they will be able to divide a quality work shifts. Consequently, leads to optimal services possible and guarantees customer satisfactions which are what a quality service is all about.

In conclusion, the main reasons why ‘mamak’ restaurant are successful in Malaysia are variety food and drinks available, simple, halal or clean food with satisfactory taste and presentation from product-based point of view while high availability and high team work from service-based point of view as explained above. As a result, ‘mamak’ restaurant have become a norm in Malaysian’s life and can also be considered as one of our cultures.

Case Study 1

Assalamualaikum and a very good day I wish to you all.

My apologies for the lateness of this entry. I was so pre-occupied with my student life and wasn't able to find free time. So, here it is and I hope its informative enough. =D

This case study was done by me during my 1st year in MITEC where the research question is "Why Mamak Restaurant is so successful in Malaysia". So, I will further elaborate the case study using the quality dimensions that I have mentioned before.

So, lets break it down to pros (advantages) and cons (disadvantages) of Mamak restaurant.


  1. Responsiveness: The waiters are highly efficient and fast to serve whenever they see a new customer coming in to the restaurant. They have keen eyes which oversees every movement within their zone. Zoning is another reason for the effectiveness where the waiters have zone and will priorities the customers in their zone.
  2. Assurance: Most Mamak restaurant and the one that I did my case study on have a HALAL logo with its certificate and also a Magistrate (Majlis Bandaraya) Cleanliness level. In addition, it is very rarely to find Mamak restaurant that have an C and below cleanliness level. This assures the food and services that they provides are clean and HALAL food which plays a huge role in Malaysia.
  3. Tangibles: Even though what is shown in display might not exactly as what we would received, the taste and quality food is consistent and comparable among all the Mamak restaurant. For example: if you ordered a roti canai in a Mamak restaurant, the tangibles of roti canai would be comparable to any other restaurant such as a Malay restaurant but with a bit distinguished taste so as to preserve originality.
  4. Empathy: The Mamak restaurant that I did the case study have a great empathy skills. The waiters would already recognize me after a few visit and remembers my preferences. As such, if I were to ask recommendation for other food that I haven't tried yet, they would be able to do so. For example: I prefer 1/2 boiled egg to be precisely half-boiled and not overcooked at all. Their waiter would ensure that I have not under or over cooked eggs.

  1. Reliability: Regrettably, Mamak restaurant sometimes failed in this field of quality dimensions. Often, the waiter misheard orders and presents wrong food and sometimes the ordered food are not delivered. I believe this mainly on 2 reasons which are language barrier and they moves too fast till doesn't wait for confirmation.
  2. Hygiene: Some Mamak restaurant have a scheduled cleaning time making the littering uncontrollable sometimes. This is due to the habit of Malaysian that threw rubbish and cigarette butts at the area the sat down. In addition, the customer flow is continuous and provide very little time frame to clean the area. There are also cases where a certain group of people (those who dislikes hairy guys) disagree with Mamak-ians who kept a long  and untidy facial hair.

In conclusion, this is an improvised version of the case study that I made during my 1st year which I will also post later. Thank you for reading. =D