By strict definition, the appraisal of quality is waste. It consumes resources, but does not directly add value to the work that is being appraised. It indicates what the actual value is, and in many cases why the work might not have met the required value. However, the appraisal of quality is a necessary waste. Without the appraisal of quality, those who are ultimately accountable for the work do not know whether or not the work meets requirements before it is accepted and incorporated into the project. And, even though it does not add value to the work itself, it adds value to our confidence about the quality of the work, which is often necessary to be paid for the work, to warranty the work, to insure the work, or to even allow public occupancy of the work. So how can stakeholders reduce the resources necessary to appraise quality without reducing the level of their confidence? Can the right type of innovative practices reduce the expenditure of resources but at the same time actually increase the confidence in the quality of the work? This paper will discuss actual methods of innovative quality management that have been used on public infrastructure projects within the United States by licensed professional engineers.
Value, waste, process, quality, innovation