It is essentially a means to continuous process

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Unformatted text preview: resulting standards may then be improved and refined in further cycles of PDCA. The PDCA Cycle is in fact more than a problem-solving strategy. It is essentially a means to continuous process improvement. Figure 1 shows how the final standardization after each successful PDCA cycle acts as a consolidator of what has been improved, and as the base for a further cycle. Figure 1 Source: Y. Otable, 2000 Kondo, the Japanese TQM expert, has made the critical point that the PDCA cycle is based not on the idea of “get it right first time”, but rather on the fact that we rarely do get anything completely right the first time, nor indeed even the second or third times. The PDCA cycle must therefore be continuously applied if quality is to be a real goal. With each application the improvements made must be standardized and become the base for further improvement. Kondo has also emphasised that the PDCA cycle must operate at every level in the pursuit of continuous improvement, not least on the shop floor. Workers too can follow a plan-docheck-act cycle, exercising a degree of self-management in their job performance that not only contributes significantly to the company’s pursuit of continuous improvement, but also improves the quality of their own working lives, and the atmosphere of the workplace. Kondo has developed the diagram in Figure 2 which shows how the self-managing participation of workers in a PDCA cycle fits within the larger PDCA process. A Roadmap to Quality 5 An Introduction to TQM An Introduction.qxd 3/10/05 12:13 PM Page 6 Figure 2 The familiar PDCA cycle The Self-management PDCA cyle P P P D A A D A C C C Source: Yoshio Kondo, 1999 Is there a point where repeated applications of the PDCA cycle will run into the law of diminishing returns? Is there a point in the pursuit of quality where it is no longer costeffective to try to achieve that final refinement that brings zero defects? Most people regard zero defects as an unrealistic goal in terms of manufacturing costs. Kondo however suggests that the answer lies in creatively finding low cost ways of improving quality: that the real aim should be “not to search for the indefinable optimum but to search for the ways and means with which we can improve quality with minimum cost.” In the UNIDO/Japan/ASEAN TQM Project, then, the PDCA cycle was the engine of implementation at two levels: • It was central to the many TQM procedures that the model companies began to implement. • It was the basis of the strategy by which the Project itself was implemented. 7. Teamwork Identifying the root causes of problems is not always easy. In addition to tools and investigative methodologies there is an important role for employees working together in teams on shared problems. The quality control circle (QCC) is a small group of employees who meet periodically to solve problems in their own workplace. Participation is voluntary, members usually choose which problems they wish to deal with, and they receive training in applying QC tools, presentation skills, project management and team building. 8. Education and Training TQM obviously involves major changes in any organization where it is introduced. With the high value it gives to human resources development, a full programme of education and training is essential. Training is needed to develop the practical skills of applying TQM tools, education to effect the changes in behaviour and attitude and to ensure understanding of what is involved in the ongoing pursuit of continuous improvement. A Roadmap to Quality 6 An Introduction to TQM An Introduction.qxd 3/10/05 12:13 PM Page 7 9. ISO 9000 TQM has a close correspondence with the ISO 9000 series standards, the set of internationally recognised standards of good management practice which ensure that the organization consistently provides products or services that meet the customer’s quality requirements. They define the requirements of a quality management system that can be applied in any organization. A company may invite its customers to audit its quality system so that they can be confident the company is able to meet their quality requirements. It may also get an independent quality system certification body to obtain an ISO 9000 certification of conformity. This certificate is a good reference in dealing with potential clients, and reduces the need for customers to conduct their own audits. TQM can assist companies in a very practical way to meet the requirements of ISO certification. 10. Gurus A number of original TQM thinkers, in both the west and Japan, have made important contributions to the development and spread of TQM. The chief gurus on the western side are Deming, Crosby and Juran. Deming devised the PDCA Cycle and developed statistical process control. He emphasises the importance of management and leadership in achieving quality. Major changes in business can only be brought about by an organizational culture dedicated to quality, and such a culture can only be achieved by changing the attitudes of top management. Crosby popularised the Zero Defects concept. He too emphasises the importan...
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This note was uploaded on 10/07/2013 for the course MKT marketing taught by Professor Anamika during the Spring '12 term at Punjab Engineering College.

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