Quality reviews are milestones of a project, used for the evaluation of its maturity from quality, timing, productivity and cost standpoints. During a quality review, the
review board (steering committee) investigates the latest phases of the project, and decides whether the project can step further into the next phase. These reviews are called in many different ways:
- Quality review.
- Quality management gate.
- Quality milestone.
Quality reviews, or quality management gates are embracing the various project phases and are essential elements of project management. These q-gates are necessary in every
project type, such as:
- New Product Introduction (NPI).
- Quality improvement projects.
- Relocation projects, etc.
The content of the quality gate depends on the preceding phase that is being evaluated during the review. Generally, the major points are:
- Review of data, statistics, KPIs.
- Maturity of design (in case of a product related project).
- Maturity of process (in case of a product related project).
- Major risks, and points of intervention.
- Decision making.
- Approval (sign-off) of decision by the committee.
In the automotive sector, milestones are part of the APQP
framework, or the company-specific product engineering
process. All milestones have different aim after different phases of the project, with the intention to evaluate the maturity of the concept, the product design, the manufacturing process (process design), the
validation and the launch to serial phase. Usually the last milestone closes the project.
Quality Milestones in the project management (Source: qMindset.com; AIAG APQP Manual)
Quality milestones are also used in many other industries, such as software, IT business, construction, etc.
reviews or milestones are not equal to the weekly / monthly / quarterly review of
a quality organization.
Focus on lessons learned and summarize it during the reviews. At the end of the project – e.g. the project turns into serial phase, or it ramps up – all learned material
should be collected and an extract should handed over to other project managers / departments, in order to use this knowledge in other projects.