Quality PrinciplesQuality management is typically based on a set of principles adopted by a firm that define how an organization will prioritize and achieve quality. For example, the well known 14 quality principles used by Toyota to drive every process at the company.
Management by Walking AroundFirms that achieve high levels of quality use techniques such as management by walking around whereby executives are expected to be fully engaged with both customers and operations such that they understand any gaps in quality. Where this doesn't occur, the quality management team is tasked with aggressively advocating for quality at the executive level.
Management AccountingManagement accounting is the practice of measuring anything that management needs to know. Quality management is largely a practice of measuring, improving and measuring again. This can include measurements that improve operational processes in real time. For example, measuring quality variances at every step of the production process to identify quality problems at the workstation level.
Root Cause AnalysisDetermining the root cause of quality problems and addressing the cause as opposed to the symptoms.
KnowledgeCapturing and communicating knowledge so that the same quality mistakes aren't repeated. Knowledge waste and knowledge loss are common root causes of quality problems.
TrainingGiving teams the knowledge they need to produce quality in their role. For example, training front desk staff at a hotel in hopes of improving service quality.
AuthorityDesigning processes and roles to give employees the authority they need to address quality issues on the spot. The classic example is a worker on an assembly line who has authority to stop an entire production line for a quality problem.
Quality ControlQuality control is the process of testing products and services. This is a tiny part of the quality management process that is too often mistaken as the only step required to achieve quality.
Quality AssuranceQuality assurance is the process of ensuring end-to-end quality including elements such as process design, product design and procurement. Quality management is often separated into two practices: quality assurance and quality control.
Quality Management = Quality Assurance + Quality Control
Incident ManagementIncident management is the reactive process of managing quality incidents such as a service that goes down.
Problem ManagementProblem management is the corrective process of addressing the root causes of incidents.
Customer EngagementEngaging customers to understand quality perceptions. This avoids a process of naive quality management whereby quality is viewed as a specification as opposed to a market reality.
Product DesignQuality management feeds into product design to improve quality at the design level.
Process DesignQuality management often takes a design thinking approach whereby all quality problems are designed-out of processes. For example, mistake-proofing a step in a production process.
TechnologySponsoring changes to technology that design-out quality problems. For example, user interfaces that remove latent human error.
CommunicationAdvocating for quality with company wide communication. For example, speaking at weekly all-hands meetings to raise awareness of quality issues and recognize individuals who have improved quality.
CultureDeveloping norms, expectations, symbols and language that are conductive to quality. For example, the norm that all employees only speak positively about customers in internal conversations in a firm that depends on customer service quality.
StandardsQuality often requires consistent processes, practices, products and services such that standards compliance is an important element of quality management.
|Overview: Quality Management Examples|
The practice of improving the quality of processes, products and services.