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On Perceptions of the Effectiveness of the Self-Assessment Process in the Nuclear Power Industry Open Access

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The organizational self-assessment process came to maturity during the Total Quality Management (TQM) movement. Although varying forms of the process had been utilized for many years, the first mature self-assessments, known as self-appraisals, were performed as a criterion for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA). One objective of this research was to assess whether self-assessments in the nuclear industry are driven more by regulatory requirements or business expectations. If driven by regulatory requirements, this may differentiate the process from other industries. Also, recent literature indicates that the existing models for conducting self-assessment for continuous improvement may be outdated (Williams, Bertsch, Van der Wiele, Van Iwaarden and Dale, 2006). In addition, these authors believe that each industry or organization should develop their own models or adapt the existing TQM model to optimize the benefits of self-assessments. Another objective of the research presented herein was to determine whether there are standard attributes that can be applied to the performance of self-assessments in the nuclear industry. This study, through use of a survey, identified attributes of the nuclear power industry that could be used in future research to construct a standard model to optimize the investments made by the industry in the use of self-assessments. Finally, the study determined the relationships between survey characteristics (e.g., participant level in the organization, those that believe that self-assessment improves performance, and the purpose of self-assessment).

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