The nominal group technique is a structured, facilitated technique where all team members participate by individually ranking ideas, issues, concerns, and solutions, and then achieve consensus by combining the individual rankings. Sample ideas that could be ranked with the nominal group technique are:
· Which defect is the greatest?
· Who are our customers?
· What are our impediments to quality improvement?
· What new standards are needed?
· What are our key indicators?
· What tool is not being used effectively and how can we increase usage?
· How do we get a quality tool used?
Nominal grouping uses a round table (verbal) or index card (written) method for equal participation of teams or groups. It is a good technique to gather large amounts of information. The steps for the nominal group technique are:
Generate a list of ideas, issues, concerns, or solutions to prioritize. Brainstorming can be used if the list is not readily available.
If the list contains more than about 35 items, it may be desirable to shorten it using Pareto analysis to make it more manageable.