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Baldrige Key Terms

  • A

  • Specific actions that your organization takes to reach its strategic objectives. These plans specify the resources committed to and the time horizons for accomplishing the plans. See also strategic objectives.

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  • A state of consistency among plans, processes, information, resource decisions, workforce capability and capacity, actions, results, and analyses that support key organization-wide goals. See also integration.

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  • The methods your organization uses to carry out its processes.

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  • B

  • Processes and results that represent the best practices and best performance for similar activities, inside or outside your organization’s industry.

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  • C

  • Organizations or individuals who cooperate with your organization to support a particular activity or event or who cooperate intermittently when their short-term goals are aligned with or are the same as yours. See also partners.

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  • Your organization’s areas of greatest expertise; those strategically important, possibly specialized capabilities that are central to fulfilling your mission or that provide an advantage in your marketplace or service environment.

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  • An actual or potential user of your organization’s products, programs, or services. See also stakeholders.

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  • Your customers’ investment in or commitment to your brand and product offerings.

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  • D

  • The extent to which your organization applies an approach in relevant work units throughout your organization.

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  • E

  • How well a process or a measure addresses its intended purpose.

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  • The actions your organization takes to ensure that all its decisions, actions, and stakeholder interactions conform to its moral and professional principles of conduct. These principles should support all applicable laws and regulations and are the foundation for your organization’s culture and values.

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  • G

  • Future conditions or performance levels that your organization intends or desires to attain. See also performance projections.

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  • The system of management and controls exercised in the stewardship of your organization.

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  • H

  • Ever-higher levels of overall organizational and individual performance, including quality, productivity, innovation rate, and cycle time.

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  • The systems and processes that your organization uses to achieve its mission requirements.

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  • I

  • Making meaningful change to improve products, processes, or organizational effectiveness and create new value for stakeholders. The outcome of innovation is a discontinuous or breakthrough improvement.

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  • The harmonization of plans, processes, information, resource decisions, workforce capability and capacity, actions, results, and analyses to support key organization-wide goals. See also alignment.

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  • K

  • Major or most important; critical to achieving your intended outcome.

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  • Your organization’s accumulated intellectual resources; the knowledge possessed by your organization and its workforce in the form of information, ideas, learning, understanding, memory, insights, cognitive and technical skills, and capabilities.

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  • L

  • New knowledge or skills acquired through evaluation, study, experience, and innovation.

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  • Numerical information that places or positions your organization’s results and performance on a meaningful measurement scale.

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  • M

  • Numerical information that quantifies the input, output, and performance dimensions of processes, products, programs, projects, services, and the overall organization (outcomes).

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  • Your organization’s overall function.

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  • P

  • Key organizations or individuals who are working in concert with your organization to achieve a common goal or improve performance. Typically, partnerships are formal arrangements. See also collaborators.

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  • Outputs and their outcomes obtained from processes, products, and customers that permit you to evaluate and compare your organization’s results to performance projections, standards, past results, goals, and other organizations’ results.

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  • An integrated approach to organizational performance management that results in (1) delivery of ever-improving value to customers and stakeholders, contributing to ongoing organizational success; (2) improvement of your organization’s overall effectiveness and capabilities; and (3) learning for the organization and for people in the workforce.

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  • Estimates of your organization’s future performance. See also goals.

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  • Linked activities with the purpose of producing a product or service for a customer (user) within or outside your organization.

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  • R

  • Outputs and outcomes achieved by your organization.

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  • S

  • One part of your organization’s customer, market, product offering, or workforce base.

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  • Your organization’s senior management group or team.

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  • All groups that are or might be affected by your organization’s actions and success.

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  • Those marketplace benefits that exert a decisive influence on your organization’s likelihood of future success. These advantages are frequently sources of current and future competitive success relative to other providers of similar products.

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  • Those pressures that exert a decisive influence on your organization’s likelihood of future success. These challenges are frequently driven by your organization’s anticipated competitive position in the future relative to other providers of similar products.

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  • The aims or responses that your organization articulates to address major change or improvement, competitiveness or social issues, and business advantages. See also action plans.

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  • Prospects for new or changed products, services, processes, business models (including strategic alliances), or markets.

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  • Well-ordered, repeatable, and exhibiting the use of data and information so that learning is possible.

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  • T

  • V

  • The perceived worth of a product, process, asset, or function relative to its cost and possible alternatives.

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  • The guiding principles and behaviors that embody how your organization and its people are expected to operate.

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  • Your organization’s desired future state.

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  • Your process for capturing customer-related information.

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  • W

  • Your organization’s most important internal value-creation processes.

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  • The coordinated combination of internal work processes and external resources that you need to develop and produce products, deliver them to your customers, and succeed in your marketplace.

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  • All people actively supervised by your organization and involved in accomplishing your organization’s work, including paid employees (e.g., permanent, part-time, temporary, on-site, and remote employees, as well as contract employees supervised by your organization) and volunteers, as appropriate.

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  • Your organization’s ability to accomplish its work processes through its people’s knowledge, skills, abilities, and competencies.

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  • Your organization’s ability to ensure sufficient staffing levels to accomplish its work processes and deliver your products to customers, including the ability to meet seasonal or varying demand levels.

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  • The extent of workforce members’ emotional and intellectual commitment to accomplishing your organization’s work, mission, and vision.

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Created August 14, 2016, Updated November 17, 2019