PDCA Cycle - Definition & Meaning

Published in Operations and Supply Chain Terms by MBA Skool Team

What is PDCA Cycle?

PDCA Cycle is a famous management tool used widely to initiate changes and improve a process. It stands for Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) Cycle. It is also called as Deming Cycle because it was developed William Edwards Dewing, a highly noted management guru.

The cycle is a 4 step process used to implement changes and also to continuously improve the system.

(1)    PLAN: In this step, define the change that needs to be made by specifying the objectives clearly. Along with the stated objectives, there must be an action plan in order to achieve the goals. The action plan generally includes the steps that will be taken, the time frame & the person who is responsible for the implementation of the same.

(2)    DO: Here the plan is converted as actions by implementing it. Data collection is also a part of this step.

(3)    CHECK: In this step, the actual results are compared with the expected results. Analysis is done regarding the extent of variation from the plan.

(4)    ACT: Once the deviations are found out, actions are taken to correct the process. This is done by doing analysis on the reasons for deviations and coming up with improved steps.

Once the 4 steps are completed, the cycle then repeats all over again. In this way, continuous improvement is done.


Hence, this concludes the definition of PDCA Cycle along with its overview.

This article has been researched & authored by the Business Concepts Team. It has been reviewed & published by the MBA Skool Team. The content on MBA Skool has been created for educational & academic purpose only.

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