Plan-Do-Check-Act Model Implementation

A Plan-Do-Check-Act model (PDCA) or Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) model can be applied to improve an overall business as well as individual projects.

Plan-Do-Check-Act Model Implementation

The four-step process of PDCA is also known as the Deming cycle, Shewhart cycle, or plan-do-study-act (PDSA). Dr. Edwards Deming popularized PDCA, which he later modified to PDSA, since “study” better described his intended action than “check.”


PDCA Plan Do Check Act Cycle Implementation

Figure 1
PDCA Cycle


As illustrated in Figure 1, PDCA Plan Do Check Act model implementation steps are:

  • Plan: Plan a change and its test to determine if a process modification is beneficial.
  • Do: Implement the change and its test on a small scale.
  • Check or study: Assess the test results to determine what was learned. Describe what went right, what went wrong, and how well the change worked. A 30,000-foot-level control chart and a hypothesis test can provide a quantitative assessment of how the change impacted the process output.
  • Act: Determine whether to adopt the change, abandon the change, or repeat the PDCA cycle. A termination decision is appropriate when no significant value is anticipated through the execution of additional PDCA cycles. It can be appropriate either to abort or repeat the PDCA cycle when the evaluated change would create adherence issues or no/minimal improvements were observed. A repeat of the PDCA cycle would be appropriate when the amount of improvement was not as much as desired but additional change enhancements opportunities have been identified. When objectives are met, the process needs to be standardized.

The power of PDCA Plan Do Check Act model implementation is in its apparent simplicity and inductive logic utilization. While being relatively easy to understand, it can be difficult to accomplish on a on-going basis due to the analytical difficulty of judging tested hypotheses on the basis of measured results.


Plan-Do-Check-Act Model Implementation with Integrated Enterprise Excellence

PDCA Plan Do Check Act Cycle Implementation can be applied in business at both the project and business level:

PDCA Plan Do Check Act Cycle Implementation -- IEE Business Management System Illustrating PDCA loop

Figure 2
IEE Business Management System Illustrating PDCA loop


An IEE system addresses the business scorecard and improvement issues that are often prevalent in businesses, as described in a one-minute video:


plan do check act model and IEE system video


Additional Information about a PDCA Model Implementation

For additional information about Integrated Enterprise Excellence (IEE) integration with PDCA see:


Contact Us to set up a time to discuss with Forrest Breyfogle how your organization might gain much from an Integrated Enterprise Excellence (IEE) Business Process Management System and its business application of Deming plan-do-check-act model implementation.

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