Regardless of size or sector, there is a fundamental factor for every business: quality.
This criterion is essential to meet the needs and expectations of your clients. Many times this is the excellent factor that determines all the consumer’s decision-making when buying a product or service.
Total Quality Management Implementation is a real turning point in business. But how to start a quality management system? Find it out right now:
Quality may sound relative because many factors can influence if a product or service is good or not. Some of them are culture, kinds of products, ‘consumer’s expectations, what is being offered by competitors, etc.
Even though there are several factors involved and many definitions used, we can understand the concept of quality as the following:
Quality is the level of satisfaction perceived by the client (internal or external) on specific requirements that are based on a group of intrinsic characteristics of a product (or service).
In other words, if the products offered are meeting determined expectations. Because they are so determinant in a ‘client’s buying decision, it should be a point of attention in all companies.
That is the reason why one should learn how to implement total quality management.
Total Quality Management is a group of connected elements in a company that meet its quality policies and goals. It is how a company should be managed, considering the level of quality desired.
Some benefits of TQM (Total Quality Management) Implementation in an organization are:
Some critical changes must be done in your company to do the TQM (Total Quality Management) implementation.
These are some the steps to be followed:
It is not possible to do a TQM (Total Quality Management) implementation efficiently unless your whole team is engaged. After all, every employee – regardless of their department – is responsible (directly or indirectly) for products and processes.
Therefore, practicing the sense of responsibility among all workers is essential. Everybody needs to consider the search for continuous improvement as a common goal in the company.
Establish a solid culture and make sure that all teams know and understand it.
Also, offer regular training on the matter and maintain good internal communication.
Doing TQM (Total Quality Management) implementation in a company that offers a large number of products may not be viable.
The reason is that it can be a complex task to strategize how to implement total quality management for all your portfolio.
Therefore, an essential step you need to take into consideration is studying your business profoundly and evaluate which products are the most relevant to your company.
You need to define, for example, the ones that are the most sold or that generate a higher income. Use ‘Pareto’s rule for that. And then you can do TQM implementation only for those products and services that have a more significant impact on your business.
Later, if it is viable, you can expand TQM implementation to other items in your portfolio.
Quality management for process and products requires monitoring.
How can you know if everything is working accordingly to the standards and expectations established?
Therefore, define which performance indicators will be used to make monitoring possible.
For example, for products, you may consider flaws, finish, packaging, raw material analysis, etc. For products, you may use production, speed, safety, transport, shipping, and others.
Be careful not to exaggerate on the number or complexity of indicators. They must meet your clients’ requirements and the quality criteria established in the previous stage.
After defining the indicators, you need to establish how you are going to collect the data they generate. How often will it be done? Will it be done automatically or manually? To make a decision, consider the following:
Keep in mind that collecting data more often can bring more reliable results, but will also cost more.
After deciding indicators and data collection methods, establish how regularly they will be monitored and who will be responsible for the job.
Define also what they should do in case data show any deviation on quality standards.
Now, it is time to put collected data into practice through the quality system.
Take into consideration your manager’s suggestions as well as your client’s and other employee’s. The goal must be to expand TQM more and more for products or processes, aiming at increasing quality in your company.
The PDCA cycle is a technique that can help your business increase its quality significantly. It is commonly used and turns the search for continuous improvement into a virtuous cycle inside a company.
It is almost impossible to talk about how to start a quality management system in companies without mentioning ISO (International Standardization Organization) certifications.
After all, this organization is a global reference when it comes to quality certification.
ISO 9001 is considered the most important since it includes various processes and different types of companies.
But there are also other ones, such as ISO 16001, which is related to social responsibility, or ISO 14002, related to the environment.
Every company that has met ISO requirements and received a certification have an important advantage.
Partners and customers will acknowledge that the business has a differential, a commitment with the quality of their products and processes.
Besides, because it is a global reference, by having an ISO certification, your company can have a business in other countries and be internationally recognized for its quality.
Obviously, those advantages require companies to meet specific criteria and, later, to have often auditions – measures to reassure the ‘company’s commitment to quality.
One of the main criteria of this type of certification is customer centeredness, which means the company needs to offer products or services that meet what their audience needs and wants.
Other requirements involve the following:
Nonetheless, an ISO quality certification does not last forever. Because it has an expiry date, the company must keep on investing in its continuous improvement in order to maintain the quality label.
Do not forget to have ongoing quality improvement as a choice to be able to please your customers and put yourself out there as a more competitive player.
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