Original Date: 05/08/1995
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Best Practice : Hornet Quality Award
McDonnell Douglas Aerospace (MDA)-St. Louis established the Hornet Quality Award (HQA) as its preeminent form of team recognition for F/A-18 aircraft program. In 1992, MDA was challenged to develop the highest quality F/A-18 aircraft to meet the U.S. Navy requirements and expectations. The company accepted the challenge and implemented the annual award in 1993 as an incentive to the F/A-18 teams. This prestigious award was designed to encourage the teams to produce quality products on time, and recognizes teams instead of individuals or managers. The award acknowledges outstanding team successes and encourages team empowerment throughout the workforce.
The HQA examines and distinguishes team performance in five strategic quality objective categories of leadership, customers, people, supplies, and processes. Teams are encouraged to apply in one of these five categories. Evaluation teams of corporate vice presidents and directors select three finalists in each of the categories. After additional review and interviews, a winning team is selected in each category. Runners-up are debriefed during the selection process.
Team winners in the five categories are recognized at a HQA Reception and ceremony held in October (Quality Month) of each year. Spouses and guests are invited, and each team receives a banner and plaque for display in the work area. Team photos are taken, and all team members receive a Teaming for Quality desk award.
The HQA program has been very successful in fostering F/A-18 team spirit, cooperation, performance, and productivity. Twenty-five applications for the award were received in 1993, and 39 were evaluated in 1994. This award has produced positive team results in the areas of quality, cost, schedules, and customer satisfaction as envisioned when MDA accepted the challenge in 1992.
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