Turtle Diagrams

Instructions for Creating a Turtle Diagram.

A "Turtle Diagram" is a quality tool used to visually display process characteristics such as inputs, outputs (expectations), criteria (metrics) and other high-level information to assist in the effective execution and improvement of key business processes.

While there is no requirement per ISO 9001 or TS 16949 to create or manage turtle diagrams, I have worked with organizations who use turtle diagrams in an effective an lean manner.  The use of these "one page plans" for key processes have often times allowed for the archive of multi-page procedures that no one reads in the first place.  The diagrams also work as a contract between cross-functions, illustrating where product, communication and other hand-offs begin and end.

This discussion will guide you in creating an accurate turtle diagram by defining the expectations for each box within the process map.

Inputs - Enter details of the actual process input such as documents, materials, schedules, requirements, information, etc. Process - Enter Customer, Support or Management process. Outputs - Enter details of the actual process output such as product, documentation, records, etc. linked to an actual measure of effectiveness.

What:  Equipment & Materials - Enter details of the machine, materials, test equipment, computer systems, software, etc. used in the process. Who:  Personnel & Competencies - Enter personnel requirements, including special skills, competency requirements, training requirements, restrictions, etc. How:  Documentation/Methods - Enter linked process controls, support processes, instructions, procedures, set-up illustrations, specific methods used, etc. Criteria:  Objectives & Targets - Enter the measures of the process effectiveness & efficiencies such as goals, targets & objectives.