Total quality management and its implementation in all aspects of organizations
Globalization of commercial economy has persuaded companies to focus on maintaining a stable competitive advantage and these advantages have a direct relationship with service/product quality and production. Also quality is a competitive weapon which ensures more durability of organizations. Production and operation managers and especially quality managers are creators of such competitive weapon. Total quality management (TQM) is a firm-wide management philosophy of continuously improving the quality of the products/services/processes by focusing on the customers’ needs and expectations to enhance customer satisfaction and firm performance. There are mixed results about the relationship between total quality management practices and performance. A supply chain is composed of all the organizations taking part in fulfilling a customer’s order. This chain of organizations may be extended from suppliers’ supplier to the customers’ customer and beyond. Supply chain management enables organizations to manage the value addition in goods and services throughout the supply chain as a single process with a common goal of customer satisfaction. The simple objective of TQM is “Do the right things, right the first time, every time”. Total quality management is mainly depends on these aspects:
· Employee Empowerment
· Customer focus
· Continuous Improvement
· Employees’ involvement
· Supplier Quality Management
Employee empowerment fosters better relationships between employees and with their managers, as employees that are given more independence tend to form better working relationships. Employee empowerment cultivates innovation, as employees that have a stake in company growth and sustainability will offer more ideas and problem-solving solutions when obstacles arise.
One of the most important factors for the success of an enterprise is its customers. Without them, a business cannot exist. But to capture customers, a business must try to find out what people want, how much and how often they will buy and how their post-purchase satisfaction will be ensured. This tells the firm to produce high quality and reliable products/services on time with increased efficiency and productivity. When customer expectations are met, their satisfaction will be increased, and the firm’s sales and the market share will increase.
Many organizations are operating in losses due to poor quality of their offerings in the modern consumer driven world. Quality was seen as a way to combat the competition. Total quality management focuses on continuous improvement of organizational processes resulting in high quality products and services.
Involving employees in decisions and policy changes that directly affect their jobs while also empowering employees to be more autonomous, greatly improves company morale at large. When employees are treated as an asset and their input is given consideration, confidence increases among every team member, and the organization sees significant gains in different facets such as productivity and loyalty.
Supplier Quality Management
Supply chain management in TQM implies reducing and streamlining the supplier base to facilitate managing supplier relationships, developing strategic alliances with suppliers, working with suppliers to ensure that expectations are met, and involving suppliers early in the product development process to take advantage of their capabilities and expertise.
Inputs from suppliers constitute the first phase of producing the products and/or services in a firm. High quality inputs provide high quality products and/or services. Therefore, the suppliers should adopt TQM and be involved in this process. Effective supply management practices enable the suppliers to adopt quality management and deliver reliable and high quality products and/or services timely.
TQM is a ethical approach of the firms to continuously improve their products/services or processes involving all stakeholders in order to satisfy their customers and to improve performance and sustainability. Knowledge and process management practices improve inventory management performance, innovation performance, social responsibility, and market and financial performance. Successful training improves operational performance, employee performance, and customer results. All aspects of TQM practices should be effectively managed in a firm because each factor in TQM practices improves different aspects of firm performance. The synergy among the TQM factors brings about exceptional or crucial improvements in the firm performances,