1999 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award

o Key dates:

April 15, 1999 — eligibility forms due.

June 2, 1999 — applications due.

o Application criteria:

The 1998 performance excellence criteria may be used for 1999 Baldrige award applications. The criteria include: 1. Leadership; 2. Strategic planning; 3. Focus on patients, other customers, and markets; 4. Information and analysis; 5. Staff focus; 6. Process management; 7. Organizational performance results.

o How to obtain copies of criteria and application details:

(1) Call Baldrige National Quality Program: (301) 975-2036. (2) Download criteria from the program’s Web site: http://www.quality.nist.gov. (3) Mail a request to: Customer Service, Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, NIST/NQP, Administration Building 101, Room A635, Gaithersburg, MD 20899.

o Notes on the awards:

The number of awards per category will be raised from two to three this year. However, the judges have never awarded the full number of awards per category since Congress established the Baldrige National Quality Award in 1987. Since 1988, there have been 32 Baldrige winners. As of last year’s expansion, there are now five categories: education, health care, manufacturing, service, and small business.

o Application-feedback loop:

The 322-member board of examiners presently includes 50 to 60 health care professionals. Applications go to mixed teams of reviewers from health care and business fields. Award process: Stage 1: Independent review and selection for consensus review. Applicants eliminated receive reviewers’ feedback. At this stage, each application can have up to 14 readers. Stage 2: Consensus review and selection for site visit. Again, those eliminated receive feedback. Stage 3: Site visit reviews. Site visit teams include six to nine judges. Applicants eliminated receive feedback. Finally, winners are chosen and they receive feedback.

o Confidentiality:

Applicants have full assurance that their names and application details will not be disclosed by the Baldrige program.

(To learn about the qualifications for examiners, see QI/TQM, December 1998, p. 167.)