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Standardization - short version

Providing for uniformity of use of a method. OR when policies and common procedures are used to manage processes throughout the system. Also, English translation of the Japanese word seiketsu, one of the Japanese 5S's (see listing) used for workplace organization.

Standardization - long version

Standardization is the process of developing and implementing technical standards. The goals of standardization can be to help with independence of single suppliers (commoditization), compatibility, interoperability, safety, repeatability, or quality. Standardization is the process of establishing a technical standard, which could be a standard specification, standard test method, standard definition, standard procedure (or practice), etc.

The existence of a published standard does not necessarily imply that it is useful or correct. Just because an item is stamped with a standard number does not, by itself, indicate that the item is fit for any particular use. The people who use the item or service (engineers, trade unions, etc.) or specify it (building codes, government, industry, etc.) have the responsibility to consider the available standards, specify the correct one, enforce compliance, and use the item correctly. Validation of suitability is necessary.

Standardization is implemented greatly when companies release new products to market. Compatibility is important for products to be successful; many devices coming out have USB, Ethernet, or other standard types of connection. This allows consumers to use their new items along with what they already own. By using standardization, groups can easily communicate through the set guidelines, in order to maintain focus. The method is made to facilitate processes and tasks; this is why it interlocks with lean manufacturing.

Standards can be:

* de facto standards which means they are followed by informal convention or dominant usage.

* de jure standards which are part of legally binding contracts, laws or regulations.

* Voluntary standards which are published and available for people to consider for use

There are typically four different techniques for standardization

* Simplification or variety control

* Codification

* Value engineering

* Statistical process control

Types of standardization process:

* Emergence as de facto standard: tradition, market domination, etc.

* Written by a Standards organization:

o in a closed consensus process: Restricted membership and often having formal procedures for due-process among voting members

o in a full consensus process: usually open to all interested and qualified parties and with formal procedures for due-process considerations.

* Written by a government or regulatory body

* Written by a corporation, union, trade association, etc.



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