The Baldrige Performance Excellence Criteria are the basis for a Baldrige Award application, but in addition, thousands of organizations use them to assess their performance, guide improvements and create a culture of excellence. The criteria include more than 200 questions in seven areas: leadership; strategic planning; customer and market focus; measurement, analysis and knowledge management; workforce focus; process management; and results. "While the questions are straightforward, they are designed to be thought provoking. Answering many of the questions will be challenging, but will help an organization identify its strengths and opportunities for improvement," said Harry Hertz, director of the Baldrige National Quality Program.
The 2007 criteria include new questions to address four areas of growing importance: capitalizing on core competencies to build on strategic advantages; using innovation to improve all aspects of an organization; involving the workforce and external contributors, such as partners and an organization's supply chain, to make critical work system decisions; and developing a high-performing workforce.
The 2007 Baldrige performance excellence criteria for business currently are available, and editions for education and health care will be available soon. The criteria are available at www.baldrige.nist.gov or by calling (301) 975-2036.