… Can be Measured (Tools Dimension)

“It’s so much easier to suggest solutions when you don’t know too much about the problem.”
               Malcolm Forbes

So far, we’ve reviewed the Subject Areas and Discussion Points for the People and Process Dimensions. Today, we’ll continue with the Tools Dimension. It has the fewest number of Discussion Points, so today’s blog may the shortest so far.  (If you want to review the initial Tools Dimension discussion, you’ll find it here.)

QE Score Assessment – Tools Dimension

As we’ve done for the last three weeks, I’ve included the weight (e.g. [3]) and guidelines for scores of 1, 4, and 7. Those that are purely inhibiting are tagged with “(inhibiting)” and only have guidelines for 1 & 4; likewise, those that are purely enabling are tagged with “(enabling)” and only have guidelines for 4 & 7.

Impact on user efficiency


  • What’s your (or your team’s) favorite tool, and how does it help? (enabling) [3]

4 – No favorite tool
7 – Tool has significant positive impact to efficiency, effectiveness and worker satisfaction

  • What’s your (or your team’s) least favorite tool, and why? (inhibiting) [2]

1 – Tool has significant negative impact on efficiency, effectiveness and worker satisfaction
4 – No least favorite – all tools are at least OK

Non value-added effort needed to “feed” the tool


  • How much time is spent “feeding” the tools your team uses? (inhibiting) [3]

1 – Significant time taken from “normal” job to keep the tool up to date with no apparent value to the team
4 – No extra time spent “feeding” the tools

Adaptability to process change


  • How easily do your team’s tools adapt to new processes? [3]

1 – They are highly rigid and do not adapt to new or changed processes
4 – They adapt to new and changed processes with nominal effort
7 – They easily adapt to new and changed processes

Tool training


  • Describe the training each team member receives on the tools used. [4]

1 – No training provided
4 – Adequate training is provided, but each team member needs to learn more on his/her own
7 – Very effective training is provided that ensures all team members can effectively use the tools in their jobs

Degree of acceptance by users


  • How well are the tools accepted by the team members? [4]

1 – We all hate them … they get in the way of us doing our jobs
4 – They’re OK … typical for our job
7 – They’re excellent tools, and we believe they’re the best available for our jobs

  • Are there alternate tools that you think would better serve the team’s needs? What are they? [3]

1 – There are many better tools that we should be using, such as …
4 – There are some others that might be better, but probably not worth the effort to change
7 – None – we don’t know of any better tools

New tool selection process


  • What process is used to select new tools? [4]

1 – I don’t know … we’re not involved in tool selection
4 – We provide input, but don’t have much say in the final selection
7 – All stakeholders are involved in tool selection process, and we understand how the decisions are made (even though we may not agree)

Tool change management process


  • What process is used to introduce new tools?   [4]

1 – We all learn the new tools on our own
4 – Most get initial training, and then train other team members
7 – All users are effectively trained, and post-training support is provided as needed

What’s Next

Next week, we’ll continue the discussion with the 4th Dimension, Metrics.

Until Then …

“Information is not knowledge. Let’s not confuse the two.”
               W. Edwards Deming

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