Why an Organization Should Consider Introducing Processes of Quality Management
The success of an organization comes from the economic valuable resources in the organization that competitors are unable to imitate. In addition, the resource uniqueness makes it difficult for competitors to find substitutes. Quality management is a resource that becomes unique when it is well implemented within an organization. The long-term nature of quality ensures that competitors have no chance of matching the organization’s product quality and hence market performance in the short-term.
Advantages of Quality Management
Quality management processes in the organization will increase the efficiency because they aim at the elimination of mistakes in the production process and the delivery of products and services. Eliminating mistakes along the production process reduces the time and cost of undertaking correction of quality mistakes thus boosting the organization’s efficiency. Secondly, the quality management processes increase the company’s turnover due to an increased productivity and high quality products that do not have to suffer unsustainable price cuts. Quality practices encourage the individual effort recognition in the organization so that each staff is aware of the importance of their work input quality to the overall organizational performance. The quality management processes will involve strategies to ensure that employee roles and responsibilities are well defined; employees are accountable to management and have the necessary expertise to evaluate their contribution to the organization. During the implementation of quality management practices, the top management of the organization has a chance to note the skill mix and skills gaps.
Quality management standards are internationally recognized. Therefore, they portray products of a company labelled with the quality mark as credible to the consumers and competitors. Other than the international recognition accorded by the international quality standards, companies also benefit from the factual approach to decision making that is brought into the organization as a requirement of the ISO 9000 standards. These include audits, reviews of organizational processes and the facilitation of information gathering for management to use in the organization’s decision-making process.
As operational managers increase the efficiency of the chain management process in the organization they boost the supplier relationships as a way to ensure that only quality raw materials are delivered to the organization. The result is a sustainable understanding that safeguards the organization’s long-term existence in the industry. A thorough evaluation of new and existing suppliers as requirement of quality management system ensures that the organization avoids losses associated with substandard raw materials that may otherwise lead to stoppage of operations. Lastly, quality management practices include a thorough documentation process for monitoring and review purposes. This makes it easy for line managers to pin point origins of quality faults and to correct them in time and ensure that the organization keeps abreast with customer expectations.
Quality process in an organization will include customer focus, continuous improvement and teamwork that aim at having superior product and service quality from the company. When considering the implementation of quality management, organization should use an integrated approach. Quality management practices are interdependent and to realize the best business outcomes only an integrated approach should by incorporated.
Discussion on Quality Management
There are two kinds of quality management processes, core and infrastructure. Core processes are quality information, product and service design and process management within the organization. Infrastructural quality management practices do not directly amount to the quality performance of the organization but directly impact to the functioning of the core quality-management practices. They include, top management support, customer relationship, supplier relationship and workforce management.
Pfeifer notes that ninety per cent of customers dissatisfied with a given company’s product quality will avoid it in future. In addition, each customer tells other nine to twenty people of the products failure to live up to its quality proclamation. However, only four per cent of the displeased customers will give feedback to the company about their dissatisfaction. Globalization has broken down traditional geographical barriers and quality products can now be sourced from any part of the globe. Most companies address the cost-intensive quality defects by focusing on the quality assurance implemented in the in-process testing. This method is only effective in preventing quality defective products from reaching the consumers but it does not eliminate the inherent problem in the company and thus does not add any value to the company’s bottom line.
Companies have to implement a quality assurance program that addresses the quality concept from the initial stage of raw material processing. This should be informed by the fact that research has indicated that the cost incurred by a company increase by a factor of approximately 10 for each phase that it passes through without being noticed from the initial fault stage until the point of identification and correction. As such, an extended level of processes in a company requires a more strict observance of quality at the initial process of product processing to avoid the cost attributed to loss of quality.
According to Kersten and Koch, logistic services has evolved from being isolated services like transportation and warehouse to the management and handling of a whole company’s flow of products. Using the example of the logistics industry the author notes that the only way to stay competitive with the pressures of price undercutting is to have a quality service delivery. Quality service is the only reprieve for a company that is unwilling to cut its prices further to match or undercut the competition.
Parast, Adams and Jones acknowledge that quality management is the new management paradigm that ensures an organization retains its efficiency and competitiveness. Uenocautions against a mass initiative aimed at improving the quality of service in an organization. The approach mostly negatively influences the quality management of the front line staff. The efficiency of the strategy is limited however, the fact remains that it leads to an improvement of the performance of the organization.
Operation managers and chain managers have different conception of quality and approach it differently. As such, operational managers will have procedural processes such as ISO 9000 certifications while operational managers collaborate and develop their supplier relationships. However, despite the differences, all management types use the same methodology in implementing quality management processes. They use job training, data analysis, project management and surveys as well as supply chain management.
Overall processes of quality management are based on consistency of thoroughness. This includes research and development department, production department, customer relationships and other departments. This paper has highlighted the benefits of quality management in the organization and the effects it has on the overall performance and hence competitiveness of a company.
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