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Are We Making Progress

As a past Baldrige Examiner I received the newly published survey that NIST has prepared named "Are We Making Progress". I thought it was great! You can freely utilize this survey within your own organization. By deploying it in your organization (or your clients' organization for you consultants in the group) you could get an idea of the employees' perception of the progress that your organization has made in the areas that pertain to the Baldrige criteria categories.

This can be very useful for comparisons from year to year or unit to unit within your own organization. But I believe there exists an opportunity to provide a method to compare your results to those of other organizations. It is very important to compare your results to other benchmarks to determine your relative position to others. For example, it would be helpful to be able to compare against:

  • your competitors
  • your industry or other industries
  • best in class or world-class
  • award winners
  • group according to how long they've used the criteria
  • size of organization (# of employees)
  • multinational, regional, local

Without these comparisons you don't really have an easy way to determine how good your results really were. If these comparisons were available it would be extremely beneficial to everyone involved in Baldrige-based Performance Excellence.

After discussing this with some of the past and current Examiners and with NIST we all thought it would be a good idea to create a National "Are We Making Progress" Comparative Database (NAWMPD).

Right now we are in the formative stages of this database. It would work like this. In order to include your organization in the NAWMPD:

  1. Your organization would be given a unique identifier and you would fill out the demographics or sort of "business overview" for your organization by answering a few questions that would apply to all the surveys you will deploy for your organization.
  2. You would be asked to deploy the "Are We Making Progress"survey randomly to at least 100 employees either on our website or we could send you hard copies to distribute and return to us.
  3. We would enter the data on the paper documents or use our website to retrieve the results for your organization.
  4. Once we had all the organizations results tabulated we would create a report that breaks down the national data into means by industry (Manufacturing, Service, Small Business, Education, Healthcare or Government), Best in Class, overall database, size of company, and time using the criteria and the other demographics mentioned earlier. Your organization would receive a copy of this report for your comparisons.
  5. Your organization would also receive their individual results report. Your organization's results would be kept completely confidential. Only you will know your own results. All other reports will either combine companies together or will code companies so that no one organization's results can be identified.

Your organization would also have access to future standard reports or customized analyses from the database at a nominal fee.

This project is totally an independent data gathering effort. It is not affiliated with the Baldrige Program Office, it is being independently run by our consulting firm, Advent Group, Inc.

The benefits, though, would apply to any organization that uses the Baldrige criteria.

The initial cost of joining the database with your 100 surveys, receiving your individual report along with the overall national study would be $1000. There would be an additional cost if the organization wants to process more than 100 surveys.

What we need to know now is whether you would be willing to join this national database. Once we know the companies that will be participating, we will publish a list of the participants, so that you can see who is joining and we will bill you the $1000 fee at that time. From there we will proceed with the survey deployment.

If you are interested in joining this database send us an email stating your organization's name, your name, your phone number. Put "YES" in the subject line and send it info@adventgroup.com.

I will be back in touch with you as the next steps develop.


Rick Fernandez, Principal
Advent Group, Inc.