Statistical Process Control (SPC) & Measurement System Analysis (MSA)

Statistical Process Control (SPC) is a set of techniques that provides a clearer understanding of the evolution and behavior of a process or system. Furthermore, SPC can be utilized to understand any industrial and service oriented process. Applications include manufacturing, customer service, health care, accounting, banking, insurance, investing, and so on.

Typically, companies react to a process when a problem has already occurred. Every time we react to process problems, the process is controlling our behavior. In essence, we are responding to the process instead of controlling it. The purpose of SPC is to control our processes rather than be controlled by them.

When applied properly, SPC strengthens our knowledge of a process or system, and it allows us to prevent detrimental outcomes. SPC also indicates when an improvement has occurred so that we can identify the cause.

Although SPC was invented in 1924, most companies still do not appreciate its value because when SPC is implemented, it is almost always misused and misunderstood. The result is that companies in every industry continue to struggle with the need or desire to consistently and competently apply SPC throughout their organizations.

Most organizations find themselves in one of three categories:

  • No internal expertise with statistical methods,
  • One or select few individuals with statistical methods competency, but no widespread or systematic application of SPC, or
  • Widespread but improper and inappropriate application of SPC methods.

The traditional cause of these shortcomings is that practitioners of statistical methods have been too academic with the transfer of their knowledge and have failed to develop practical tools that allow a "lay person" to use SPC in their daily work. Furthermore, many practitioners are not up to date on the most modern SPC methods.

Read the "Capability Indices Can Be Deceiving" article.


SPC-IQ® is a truly unique approach to the implementation of SPC and Measurement System Assessment (MSA). SPC-IQ® allows any person in your company (with even the most basic mathematics and computer skills) to identify and apply the most appropriate and modern SPC techniques to their daily work. They will even be able to interpret the outcome. Furthermore, for the first time, SPC-IQ® has turned SPC and MSA implementation into a defined business processes that can be seamlessly integrated into your business operating system (BOS) and/or quality management system (QMS).

SPC-IQ® introduces two Support Processes and 14 supporting step-by-step Work Instructions:

  1. SP-8230 Process Stability & Capability (SPC)
    1. WI-8230-01 Determining Sample Size & Frequency
    2. WI-8230-02 Testing For Normality of Data
    3. WI-8230-03 I-MR Charts for Normal & Non-Normal Data
    4. WI-8230-04 Constructing CUSUM & EWMA Charts
    5. WI-8230-05 Xbar/Rb/Rw & Xbar/Rb/d Charts
    6. WI-8230-06 Xbar-R & Xbar-S Charts
    7. WI-8230-07 np, p, & Standardized p Charts
    8. WI-8230-08 c, u, & Standardized u Charts
    9. WI-8230-09 Testing For Location/Position Differences
    10. WI-8230-10 Stability Assessment - Control Chart Interpretation Guide
    11. WI-8230-11 Capability Assessment
  2. SP-7610 Measurement Systems Assessment (MSA)
    1. WI-7610-01 Attribute Gage R&R Study
    2. WI-7610-02 Variable Gage R&R Study
    3. WI-7610-03 Linearity Assessment

SPC-IQ® includes MSA because understanding measurement system (gage) variability, capability, and reliability is vital to the success of SPC implementation.

Both processes are presented in the form of Process Maps to aid in training, retention, and ease of use.  Together these Process Maps guide the user through all of the process steps and decisions needed to identify the appropriate SPC method and to assess the capability of a measurement system.

Each Process Maps also includes direct links to each of the 14 Work Instructions that detail how to use Minitab 15 statistical software to set up data and studies, apply each SPC technique, and how to generate and interpret the outcome.  The Work Instructions include actual Minitab 15 screen shots that the user will see every step of the way.

SPC-IQ® is provided as stand-alone set of documents, as an element of the Lean QMS® Curriculum, or as a stand-alone workshop.

Contact Pinnacle to schedule a live SPC-IQ® demo.

SPC-IQ® Workshop Content

  • Concept of Variation - Common Cause & Special Cause
  • Data Types - Attribute vs. Variable
  • Mean & Standard Deviation
  • Norma & Non-Normal Distribution
  • Testing for Normality of Data
  • Central Limit Theorem
  • Process Stability & Capability
  • Specification Limits vs. Control Limits
  • Sampling & Sensitivity - Sample Size & Frequency
  • Type I & Type II Error
  • Hypothesis Testing
  • Data Transformation & Distribution Fitting
  • Paired t Test
  • Analysis of Variance (ANOVA)
  • Control Chart Selection & Creation
  • Guidelines for Analysis of Charts - Out of Control Signals
  • Stability & Linearity
  • Accuracy & Precision
  • Repeatability & Reproducibility
  • Discrimination
  • Variable Gage R&R Studies
  • Attribute Gage R&R - Short Method & Analytical Method
  • Analysis of Variance (ANOVA)
  • Range vs. ANOVA methods
  • Analysis & Interpretation of Study Results

SPC-IQ® Workshop Agenda

Preparation for Workshop

Pinnacle customizes all of its services to be relevant to each individual client. For this reason, Pinnacle's instructor will provide you with a data collection worksheet prior to the SPC-IQ® Workshop. You will use the worksheet to collect process data from two of your actual industrial and/or service oriented processes. The completed worksheet will be used during the SPC-IQ® Workshop. This ensures that participants experience SPC implementation in their everyday work environment.

Day 1

  • Introduction & Overview of Key SPC/MSA Concepts
  • Introduction, Review, & Customization of SP-8230 Process Stability & Capability (SPC)
  • Introduction to Minitab 15
  • Exercise I - Working With Variable Data
    • WI-8230-01 Determining Sample Size & Frequency
    • WI-8230-02 Testing For Normality of Data
    • WI-8230-03 I-MR Charts for Normal & Non-Normal Data
    • WI-8230-04 Constructing CUSUM & EWMA Charts
    • WI-8230-05 Xbar/Rb/Rw & Xbar/Rb/d Charts
    • WI-8230-06 Xbar-R & Xbar-S Charts
    • WI-8230-09 Testing For Location/Position Differences
    • WI-8230-10 Stability Assessment - Control Chart Interpretation Guide
    • WI-8230-11 Capability Assessment
  • Exercise II - Working With Attribute Data
    • WI-8230-07 np, p, & Standardized p Charts
    • WI-8230-08 c, u, & Standardized u Charts
    • WI-8230-10 Stability Assessment - Control Chart Interpretation Guide

Day 2

  • Exercise II - Working With Attribute Data (Continued)
  • Exercise III - Working With Company Data
    • Setting up data in Minitab 15 (from the data collection worksheet)
    • Using SP-8230 Process Stability & Capability (SPC) & Supporting Work Instructions to:
      • Classify Data - Variable or Attribute
      • Determine Sample Size & Frequency
      • Test Data For Normality
      • Identify & Apply Appropriate SPC Technique (Control Chart)
      • Test for Location/Position Differences (if applicable)
      • Assess Process Stability
      • Assess Process Capability
  • Introduction & Overview of Key MSA Concepts
  • Exercise IV - Working With SP-7610 Measurement Systems Assessment (MSA)
    • WI-7610-01 Attribute Gage R&R Study
    • WI-7610-02 Variable Gage R&R Study
    • WI-7610-03 Linearity Assessment

Contact Pinnacle to schedule a live SPC-IQ® demo.

Who Should Attend

  • Senior executives who want to understand SPC & MSA
  • Department Managers
  • Plant Managers
  • Engineers
  • Team Leaders/Front Line Supervisor
  • Office or Shop Floor Employees

SPC-IQ® Workshop Format

Because Pinnacle customizes all training and consulting service, this workshop is presented on-site to groups of up to 12 individuals. All discussions and examples are relevant to your organization. The delivery style is interactive and participants are encouraged to ask questions.


By the end of the SPC-IQ® Workshop your organization will have processes that address SPC and MSA that your employees will understand and use. The processes will also empower the employees with the understanding of what their process is really doing and how their work may influence it. The net result is that modern statistical methods become integral components of your organization's BOS and/or QMS.

Contact Pinnacle to schedule a live SPC-IQ® demo.