Business across the globe sustains in a certain standard condition. Just like humans, organizations also depend on several processes and frameworks to live. It is noted that over the bygone years the corporate world has aggressively focused on developing theories and models to ensure a successful run for companies in the present and the future as well. So this measure of standard or in simple term, quality is in turn necessary to which everything has to conform in order to function at a very fundamental level. In societies and business organizations in life, quality is something which must be managed and made sure to be present. According to Dale (2015), in Total Quality Management it is this quality that is at the center and the goal to be achieved. Besides, TQM bears a huge effect on the functioning of the service organization and TQM has been adopted as an effective approach in many industries including manufacturing industries across the globe. Sectors like healthcare, banking, education, hospitality and ICT, IT and software industry all have taken TQM as a very effective management discipline to be implemented to get the competitive edge in the market.
This particular project focuses on the aspect of TQM on a wide basis. In addition to a literature review that report also includes a practical application of the theory as well. Further, its principles and management practices are also included to understand its application to improve effectiveness of an organization.
The Total Quality Management (TQM) helps to integrate processes and functions within the establishment so that the continuous improvement of the goods’ quality and services can be achieved meeting consumer satisfaction. It takes a holistic approach for all over excellence.
The effectiveness of TQM depends on Leadership, Product, Process, Commitment, and Organization which are widely known as five pillars of TQM.
Donald L. Weintraubat, head of an international management consulting, training, and research company conducted a wide range of survey on the effectiveness of TQM covering almost 300 companies, and observed that TQM tend to have certain common elements, which are those five common elements mentioned above pertain to successful quality processes (Goetsch and Davis 2014). Customer satisfactions, Total involvement, Measurement, Systematic support, Continuous improvement are all the necessary ingredients for TQM to be successful. He emphasized that in order to make TQM work; you need a plan for implementing other sub-strategies also. Management needs to make sure that the customer is recognized as a critical part of TQM. Internal and external measurements and correct measurements of all the parameters of TQM are vital. And TQM needs to be linked with the other critical processes business. As stated by Oakland (2014), TQM involves profound cultural change. Based on experience Donald L. Weintraubat thinks that cultural change is not easily achievable due to various factors and obstacles exist within organizations and outside.
In an Empirical Study conducted by Md. Ariful Islam and Anwarul Haque showed the effectiveness of TQM implementation in manufacturing sector. A comprehensive framework they used to study 31 manufacturing organizations of the Ready Made Garment sector in Bangladesh. The framework has been claimed to be comprehensive with, according to them had “eight pillars and 25 associated factors” which were developed and verified thoroughly in practical settings. Supported by the empirical study this showed that the elements of TQM have strong influence and effectiveness on studied organizations and this facet is also supported by the managers of the organisations. The study found the vital forces at play are: close relationship with suppliers, establishing an environment for quality management, close relationship with clients and customers, development of teamwork and strong employee involvement. Although benchmarking and process improvement (other two pillars of TQM according to them) are given less priority by the managers of those organizations.
According to Jiménez-Jiménez, Gimenez-Espin and Martínez-Costa (2013), the TQM had its origins in early 1920s when the statistical theories and techniques started being used for the first time in quality control of product manufacturing. In the 1940s, Japan developed this notion further under the guidance of some Americans named Juran, Feigenbaum and Deming and the focus subsequently expanded, covering the control of quality for all matters within an organization which markedthe start of Total Quality Management.
In the year 1920, first form of Quality Management was developed as industries in the US started applying principles of scientific management. Organizations visibly divided the planning process with the execution of the plan. On the other hand, labor unions started opposing them as workers were not being consulted anymore for the conditions, environments and functions of their job (Bon and Mustafa 2013). In the late 20s, the Hawthorne experiments exhibited how the participation of workers could impact worker productivity. In the year 1930, according to Fu et al. (2015), Walter Shewhart, who had developed the processes for quality control and statistical analysis, developed and pioneered the statistical methods.
While during 1940`s, Japanese industrial leaders recognized a serious and huge problem that Japanese products were cheap imitations and are of low quality which could not stand the competition on international level and so they tried to innovate ways for producing products of superior quality. They searched outside and invited some quality experts to study as to how to approach this problem. When Deming implied that their goals can be achieved in just five years, the Japanese didn’t believe him. They were hell bent on producing their product which would be top quality and pass the quality benchmark on the international market. Japanese took the experts’ along with Deming’s advice very seriously and followed the ways they suggested.
As stated by Talib (2013), during 1950s quality control management and its techniques and tools advanced rapidly and came to be the mainstay of the management systems in Japan. And this notion of the quality control did not stopped just at the companies and their management. In the early 60s Quality circles started appearing who were basically a group of workers used to voluntarily gather for discussing and thinking about the methods for improving the qualities of workplaces. They would present their ideas to the management. Employee Motivation emerged as a spinoff of these quality circles. Another by-product of this quality circle is the notion or concept of improving every aspect of organizational issues along with the quality of the products. Gurus of TQM came forward and propounded their theories; W. Edwards Deming started teaching methods and tricks for statistical analysis and quality control to the executives and engineers in Japan. According to Viljoen and Underwood (2014), this roughly was the origin of TQM. In this period of time several Gurus of Quality Control management propounded their theories and taught their management to various organizations. It is noted that, Joseph M. Juran explained the conceptions and models for quality controlling and managerial breakthroughs. The book Total Quality Control by Armand V. Feigenba was published which emerged as a frontrunner for the current understanding of Total Quality Management. Philip B. Crosby started promoting the idea of zero defects which provided for the improvement of quality in many organizations (Weckenmann, Akkasoglu and Werner 2015).
On the other hand, the Japanese approached and named their quality management companywide quality control. The term “quality management system” arose around this time only. Around this year in Japan, Kaoru Ishikawa started discussing about the ‘total quality control’ in Japan. His approach was largely dissimilar from the idea of total quality in the West. Hissynthes is of the philosophy toward developing a quality control management led to the ascendency of Japan as a leader in quality management. According to Ishikawa ‘company-wide quality control’ encompasses each of its employees from the managers at the top to the workers at the bottom level.
During 1969, according to Pimentel and Major (2016), Feigenbaum first introduced the term ‘total quality’ through his paper in Tokyo at the first International Conference on Quality Control. He used the term to refer to the larger issues under the organization. Furthermore, it was in the 1980s to 1990s observing the success of Japanese in employing quality management techniques, philosophy, strategies, the companies in Westal so began introducing this system of management in their own quality schemes. TQM started gaining a renewed momentum in West and a new chapter of Quality management and control started in this period. The terms “Total Quality Management” and “TQM” became universal phrase for the vast and wide range of quality-focused tactics, schemas and practices and became the point of focus for this new quality revolution in the western world (Chang 2016). Expressions like ‘customer focus’ ‘continuous improvement’ and employee involvement began appearing everywhere. But in that entire buzz it was still largely unclear as to what kind of policies; activities and practices were needed to implement in order to fit the definition of TQM (Mitra 2016).
Concerning the modern world, TQM is the beliefs and viewpoints of a wide and universal approach for organizational quality management. As per Slack, Brandon-Jones and Johnston (2013), now principles and processes that comprise TQM are specified and known by the standards of quality like the ISO 9000 series and the quality award presentations namely the Deming Prize and the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. As an academic subject interest in TQM rose and reached a high around 1993. In September 1995 The Federal Quality Institute was boarded up by the Clinton administration as part of their efforts to streamline the government. The European Centre for Total Quality Management was shut down in August 2009 due to the effects of the Great Recession. Now Total Quality Management has been largely replaced by the ISO 9000 series of standards. Their official certification practices started in the 1990s. The success of Jack Welch attracted a huge focus on the Six Sigma and Toyota's success which in turn garnered focus to Lean manufacturing. These caused businesses to improve quality under the name of TQM fading. At present, TQM only stays alive in some national awards for quality presented around the Earth.
In terms of Key Components of Total Quality Management (TQM) started in the 50s and has gradually evolved whose popularity grew since the early 80s. According to Drucker (2017), TQM essentially requires a culture in which there is a quality in each and every phase of a business’s operations. This essentially includes activities performed correctly in the first go and flaws and ravages being removed from the operations. Further, Total Quality Management needs eight basic components for being successful. The eight components are further broken down into four broader categories according to their capacities. Firstly, Establishment, encompasses: Integrity, Trust and Ethics. Secondly, Building Bricks encompasses: Training, Leadership and Teamwork. Further, Binding Mortar encompasses: Communication and lastly, Rooftop encompasses: Recognition.
The working and processes to make TQM is another integral aspect for the business industries across the globe. Santosh Subhash Chandra Dubey and Dr. Arun Kumar of VIVA Institute of Technology, Maharashtra in their paper Literature Review on the Implementation of TQM showed that in many developing and third world countries such as India, many large scale industries have adopted TQM but a negligible number of Small and Medium Organizations have adopted the practice of TQM (Valmohammadi and Roshanzamir 2015). SMEs in developing countries still don’t take up the idea of adopting TQM very seriously. But under customer pressure, many Indian SMEs have started setting up of suitable Quality Management Systems for acquiring ISO 9001 certification which gives Quality Assurance. But they most of them has not yet adopted the practice of TQM due to the lack of the awareness about it. In their literature review they listed difficulty factors of implementing TQM they are, Financial Factor, Technology Factor, Consumer Factor, Economic Factor, Communication Factor, Top Management Skill, Teamwork, Competitive Advantage, Market Orientation and Government Policy.
Prof. Marius-Dan DALOT (Ph.D.), from the Romanian-American University argues that total quality management along with its implementation is a critical necessity for the survival of industries today. It is important for the company’s management to completely apprehend and have faith in the philosophy of total quality as the attainment of maximum benefits would not be possible without it even after investing heavy resources for it (Miranda Silva et al. 2014). Only tools and processes alone can never guarantee sustainable or significant results. The philosophy of TQM results will remain vague if there is no interest or clear attempts by the top management of the company. Business will perform better if implementation is rigorous (Calvo - Mora et al. 2013). The triumph or collapse of Total Quality Management in systems however depends heavily over the interest and initiatives of the members within the organization; here HRM play a vital role. Furthermore, In UK, businesses and companies are evaluated on the criteria from the seven categories, which are, Leadership, Strategy, Workforce, Customers, Operations, Measurement and analysis and Results.
Further, in the words of Ooi (2014), the seven tools for performing TQM are, Cause-and-effect diagram, Histogram, Pareto chart, Check sheet, Flow chart, Control chart, Scatter diagram and Stratification .
Concerning TQM practices, as per Hietschold, Reinhardt and Gurtner (2014), many kinds of TQM strategies have been developed for enhancing the business management systems. Cua, McKone, and Schroeder (2001) distinguished the nine most common Total Quality Management routines in their six empirical studies as, Cross-functional product design, Management of processes, Management of supplier quality, Involvement of customers, Strategic planning, Cross-functional training, Committed leadership, Employee involvement, Information and feedback
As stated by Dale (2015) TQM techniques is considered to be a matter of importance to ensure smooth run of various businesses. Six Sigma, it is a process improvement statistical methods to reduce the number of defects in a process (Ooi 2014). Just-in-Time (JIT), this is a manner of production for increasing returns on the investment made in business by dropping the under-process stocks and related carrying costs. Further, Pareto Analysis is another statistical method utilized to handpick a limited quantity of jobs which produce a size able overall result (Yunis, Jung and Chen 2013).Five Whys, refer to an asking or interrogating technique which explores the domino effect relationships triggering any particular problem.
Figure 1: Structure of TQMComponents and their interrelationships
(Source: Dale 2015)
Application of TQM
According to Vrellas and Tsiotras (2015), a fast advancing company selling beers names Asahi UK made heavy investments in a state-of–the-art new brewing facility which improved the productivity and quality of the company. The application of new technology helped in cost reduction additionally. The company then started looking for methods to achieve a further dramatic leap in their performance as the next step. They began exploring the principles of TQM for achieving this goal of theirs in their manufacturing, recognizing that added investment on new technology might offer diminishing returns. Additionally, the basic processes of brewing beer are regarded as standardized process which needs to be fixed in Asahi UK. Malted barley and other ingredients are processed fermented into alcohol. In the well maintained process bittering agent is added and filtering is done. Yeast added for the fermentation, maturation and laceration of the beer in fermentation tanks are also taken into consideration. Packing the beer into the bottles is an important step.
The beer factory thoroughly investigated and came with the findings of the major zones of quality that demanded remarkable improvement. Their study showed that improving taste of beers and keeping that taste consistently is the area of target to be improved. They thoroughly investigated attributes of beer taste and thought that taste of ‘certain bitterness’ is a parameter to be the focus of improvement process (Vrellas and Tsiotras 2015). They used tools and techniques of TQM implemented in manufacturing product and maintaining product quality to improve and achieved a remarkable result.
Based on the case study of Asahi UK and is motive to develop TQM, certain recommendations are made. The management of the firm needs to re-organize and thereby coordinate strategic planning to ensure a proper and fruitful establishment of TQM in the company. Employee Empowerment is another method by the firm can expand positive TQM culture and it will also help to enhance operations. A free and flow means of communication is also suggested for the betterment of the beer company. It is noted that a two way flow of communication shall significantly contribute towards training, building teamwork, addressing employee needs and also to meet customer satisfaction level in the long run. Setting up of MIS as a support system to TQM is also recommended to the enterprise. The proactive course of TQM is also suggested to ensure that the company fulfills future demand. In order to employment technological advancements, training and development of the workforce is hugely recommended to Asahi UK.
In between the rise and reaching its peak during 90’s TQM has undergone huge change and evolved through the decades. Out of TQM methods and practices emerged other techniques of quality management and practiced all over the globe. But the Great Recession has changed many equations in businesses all over the globe. Lean and Six Sigma’s Impact is still there and the significance of management of quality has been felt. Though there is shift in mind set perceptible the significance of QTM cannot be ignored and together with other offshoots of QTM it still is in the game. The driven philosophy is there and new ways of learning perhaps need to be adopted in organizations to implement TQM. In coming times what future TQM has remains to be seen.
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