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Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA)

"The value in the Baldrige process is understanding 
how the criteria apply to your company." 
-- Ko Nishimura, 
CEO of twice-winning Solectron Corp.
The Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA) is an annual award to recognize United States companies for performance excellence.
 
The Canada Award of Excellence (CAE) is Canada's equivalent award.
 
The Business Excellence Award is Europe's equivalent award.
 
The MBNQA is a Total Quality Management model often referred to as a framework. The model is made up of 7 elements (shown below in italic) categorized under four basic principles (shown below in bold):
 
i) Driver:  The 1.0 Leadership element of MBNQA drives the system by
      • setting direction
      • creating values, goals and systems
      • guiding the pursuit of customer value and company performance improvement
ii) System:  Composed of processes for meeting the company's customer and performance requirements--elements, include:
      • 2.0 Information and Analysis
      • 3.0 Strategic Planning
      • 4.0 Human Resource Development and Management
      • 5.0 Process Management
iii) Measures of progress:  These measures provide a results-orient basis for channeling actions to delivering ever-improving customer value and company performance. These measures are addressed in element 6.0 Business Results, and include:
      • Product and service quality
      • Productivity improvement
      • Waste Reduction/Elimination
      • Supplier Performance
      • Financial Results
iv) Goal:  The basic aims of the system to deliver the ever-improving customer value and company performance. These goals are addressed in element 7.0 Customer Focus and Satisfaction, and include:
      • Customer satisfaction
      • Customer satisfaction relative to competitors
      • Customer retention
      • Market Share Gain

Comparing MBNQA against
ISO 9001:1994 and SEI SW-CMM V1.0
Each standard and model emphasizes different aspects of Total Quality Management. As you can see in the chart below, all standards and models have an overwhelming focus on process management.
 
When Michael Tingey studied the standards and models for the types of activities emphasized, he discovered the MBNQA model puts a large emphasis on improving and then on planning. In comparison, the ISO 9001 standard puts its highest emphasis on managing and then on implementing. The SEI SW-CMM model is the reverse of ISO 9001--its largest emphasis is on implementing then managing.
 
( click graph for expanded view )
Comparison chart
 

Software Organizations Awarded a MBNQA Trophy, include:

Is MBNQA Worth It?

The August 1998 Quality Digest magazine answered this question, as follows.
"NIST stock study in 1998 showed that the MBNQA award recipients as a group significantly outperformed the Standard & Poor's (S&P's) 500 by nearly 2.5 to 1. Whole-company recipients outperformed them by nearly 3 to 1. The 52 publicly traded, site-visited companies outperformed the S&P 500 by 80 percent, achieving a 216-percent rate of return, compared with a 118.7-percent rate of return for the S&P 500."

 

This article is comprised of excerpts from NIST's web site and from various MBNQA promotional material.  In addition, this article quotes the Quality Digest magazine and summarizes Michael Tingey's comparison of MBNAQ, SEI SW-CMM V1.0 and ISO 9001:1994. 

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( Revised: January 25, 1999 )