Quality and system Management is a very important issue in every business sectors in the world. It is a set of policies and processes which is required for planning, execution, production and development in every core business area of an organization. This enables a company to identify, measure, control and ultimately improves the various business processes which can lead to overall business performances. There are various awarding body of standardization, who provide certificates for maintaining the quality standards around the world, and ISO is one of the biggest name in it.
I choose TNT for my project as they are one of the biggest names in the logistic and postal industry and also they have strict quality code and true conciseness for quality control of their services. So, here I just wanted to see how much quality control are there really are and how their employees take it as their one of moral duties.
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TNT is a Netherlands-based transportation services company, engaged in the provision of mail, and Express delivery services. The company provide a range of services including collecting, sorting, Transporting and distributing a wide variety of items within precise timeframes.
The company mainly operates in Europe and North America.
It also offers regional, national and worldwide express delivery services for business-to-business clientele.
TASK 01: THE STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT OF OPERATIONAL MANAGEMENT
The Effectiveness of Operation management in TNT
An in depth assessment of the company's current operations was carried out in 1989 to spot opportunities for development which the company could build upon to attain challenging quality objectives. They were delighted to have confirmation at that time of their strengths, which still contain:
knowledgeable and competent managers in all department
an outstanding and reasonable service
very tough financial controls with perfect depot profit and loss accounts arranged every week
helpful management information distributed often in the form of weekly league tables to inform service achievement, costs and other necessary data
Periodical management meetings to reassess costs and service.
Their effort was quite simply to make the company more efficient by achieving a improved service at lower unit expenses. In communicating their aims to their employees in the company, that they placed great importance on rejecting from the very start the idea of a cost against quality trade-off. 'TNT has a "Make it Happen" culture, where we have to think fast, talk straight and show total commitment to the job'  www.tnt.com.
Financial savings were expected but these came as a result of bringing better working methods and not because of rapid fixes or by any other shortcuts. Their advance is that time wasted in current processes should be removed and information shows that execution of this philosophy produces superior service quality as well as better productivity.
TNT have build throughout the company a belief that cost cutting and service benefits are not incompatible but are both the outcome of changes brought by well managed quality driven teams.
Management of Various Processes in TNT
Feedback from TNT,s clients caused them to modify the attitude of the organization to performance principles. Usually their main performance meter was the level of TNT culpable service failures and success was calculated by the degree to which errors were reduced.
As a result, now the company is able to make deliveries on time, specially what they call their new prime benchmark of performance. Weekly feedback for each location screening actual results for all of the following outcomes was introduced and this in progress measurement discipline continues to help them filter their quality of service:
deliveries in scheduled time
misrouted and miss sorted consignments
copy delivery notes raised and not coordinated with original documents
delayed line haul services arriving at the company's hubs
failures to distribute consignments on time analysed by reason
'We recognise that we can always do better and we strive to beat our best performance - you most certainly cannot accuse us of resting on our laurels! We continuously seek to improve in every area of the business by challenging what we do on a daily basis'  www.tnt.com.
Always on Time
Marked to Standard
Gradually the company have introduced and expanded additional performance targets for key sustain processes to cover their administration and selling functions. The company now collect and feedback every week hard Intel on customer enquiry management, credit observations, customer contacts, complaints received and other key outcomes which give measures of their ability to please customers.
TNT has realised that clients in their urgent delivery markets are frequently more amazed by an capability to save time instead of cost. The main focus is upon pure price reduction therefore decreased and they now have their concentration on reducing time from processes.
TNT,s regular and unrelenting reporting disciplines keep on to help them rapidly bring in improvements every time when standards are not achieved. A named personal at each depot is accountable for each key performance result and their employees are empowered to call on extra resources to achieve required results.
TNT have expanded companywide poster campaigns to stress the need for quality and to highlight the fact that everybody is involved in their development activities. Customer visible forefront development activities were obviously the ones to go for first and these includes :
vehicle loading and unloading
In telephone approach
accurate routing and tagging
drivers made their delivering on time
In combination with the posters a "Driving for Quality" movement has been introduced. New uniforms were intended not only to project the corporate figure of the company but also to craft a further statement to workforce that each and every individual has an significant role to play in the company's obligation to quality. Communication has for all time been one of TNT,s uppermost priorities. They take satisfaction in a victorious open door policy, which really works, and this has been supplemented by regular employee surveys since 1992 to make sure the company can always be in contact with current perceptions.
The responses from the survey are reviewed carefully and the meetings are also take place with concerned parties to ensure that the right person get the proper attention.
The information's are transmitted through various channels (magazine, videos, meetings etc) to the employees. The main goal of this is just to know the employees point of view and which can also help in decision-making.
The information technology and communication support are the company's main strength for success. Still from 1990 the company has a keen eye on its technology uses, and based on it they think they have potentially huge chance of increasing technological efficiency and performance. A major example of this could be their "Universe System" which has developed the customer service and communication system internally for all the companies' employees.
The company had decided to introduce "Universe System" in 1993 from which high performance results are still being achieved.
In the recent time, TNT has introduced data terminals in TNT express delivery vehicles. Through this system, the company can now provide up to the minute information about the consignment to the customers. They have also introduced in-cab data terminals, from which they can get more up to date request about consignment pickups.
The company is very keen about the development of the state of the art technology which can help them in their business to stay competitive and reliable through efficiency and performance.
The company at present is investing a huge amount of money into the development of information technology and advance communication systems. They believe that their customers and employees are the main source of information about new technological involvement in the businesses, and the company is working towards extracting the knowledge from these identified sources.
TNT as a company from the very beginning has understood the importance of their employees skills and performance. As a result the company has introduced a integrated plan to develop an effective and efficient work group in the whole industry.
The companies aim is to produce a multitasking working environment in the company into which the employees of the organization can implement their skills and knowledge acquired from the companies training programs.
We implemented and have since updated a number of successful programmes of evaluation; Opportunities for appraisals and carrier development are available in the company just to improve the skills and performance of the employees.
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This company has decided to invest in people standard in 1993, and in 1994 the company has successfully declared itself as a peoples company. Thus in the process the company has adopted the following approaches in peoples management.
Commitment in training and developing everyone in the company.
Arrangement to produce and present a frame works for identifying and addresing the skills gaps.
Procedures to train up people with high skills to properly satisfy the customers.
Simultaneous review and correction of appraisal, training and all other management processes in the business.
The company has established a truly working class environment for its employees, where employee nourishment and development has become a reality. Moreover the company has sustained some basic rules and regulations concerning employee promotion and rewarding. They have a policy to promote staff from within the company, which have resulted increesse motivation efficiency among the employees.
The company TNT has started to use various processes to identify talented and knowledge people in the company for promotions and other different kinds of rewards.
Strategic Objectives of the Company
The companies aim is to exceed the customers' expectations in the course of transferring their goods and documents around the world. They deliver value to their customers by providing the most reliable and efficient solution for distribution and logistics.
They lead the industry by three things:Â
Instilling pride in their people
Creating value for the shareholders
Sharing responsibility for the world
Corporate Strategy & Business Strategy
TNT as a postal and courier company has a strict business and corporate strategy to balance their business in the competitive market.
Delivering more means that going an extra mile, about always going beyond standard and ultimate customer expectations, delighting the customers and ultimately leads the market.
Delivering more holds the idea and attitude of 'we can do it', extreme competitiveness, forward thinking, responsibility and high ambitions.
Delivering more is optimistic attitude where the company gets the confident of overcoming obstacles laid on the path of achieving ambitious goals
Delivering more makes the company to stand tall and separate from the stand out from the average crowed.
TNT, s main competitive strategies are:
The Aim is to satisfy the customers all the time
Take Challenge in improving all what they do
Be very passionate and confident about the workforce
The whole company work and act like a team
Always be honest with the customers and overall stake holders.
Measure the success of the company through their sustainable profit
TNT has many different technical aspects of monitoring their employee's performance and thus their total organizational success rate. The companies delivery tracking system also have a function to tell that which delivery was made on time and which one didn't and the extent to which it was late.
TNT is very serious about their customers' needs and satisfactions. And to give in the best satisfaction to their customers they greatly relay on their employees skills and performances. The term timeliness, reliability, cost effectiveness is very important issues in the courier industry.TNT rank their performance based on the sales and the number of employee complaints per month.
The company monitor their financial and overall growth in three ways.
Driving business performance by using different value-based performance evaluation technique and overall standardisation of the business processes.
Maintaining the better financial flexibility to support potential growth rate to handle expenditure and mergers and acquisitions.
Maintaining the capital structure efficient and reliable.
There are some key factors based onto which TNT measures its financial performances.
the number of shipments transported through -- TNT's networks,
the volumes of mail TNT delivers,
the mix of services TNT provides to its customers,
the prices TNT obtains for its services,
TASK 02: APPROPIATE SYSTEMS
Two Systems to Ensure Quality for Products and Services
Benchmarking is the course of evaluating the expenses, cycle time, productivity, or quality of a specified process or methodology to another which is generally been accepted to be an industry standard or best practice. The outcome is very often a business case for bringing in changes in order to make development. The Idea of benchmarking was first introduce by cobblers to measure ones feet for shoes. They where placing the foot on a "bench" and would mark to make the pattern for the shoes. Benchmarking is mainly being used to measure performance using a specific indicator (cost per unit, productivity per unit, cycle time of x per unit, defects per unit etc) resulting in a clear chart of performance which is then compared to systems.
Types of benchmarking:
Continuous Improvement Process (CIP, or CI) is a widely used managerialprocess whereby the delivery (customer valued) systems are constantly evaluated and developed in the view of their efficiency, effectiveness and flexibility.
Many see it as a Meta process for most managerial systems (Business Process Management, Quality Management, and Project Management). Deming saw it as a part of the whole 'system' whereby essential feedbacks from the process and customer were extracted and evaluated properly against organisational goals and objectives. The real fact is that it can be called a management process, but it definitely does not mean that it needs to be executed and exercise by the 'management' merely that it makes judgement about the implementation of the delivery process and thus the design of the delivery process itself.
The elements discussed above are more of tactical elements and factors of CIP, Here in CI/CIP the more strategic elements contains deciding on how to extend the true value of the delivery process output is to the customer (Effectiveness) and at the same time how much flexibility is needed in the process to meet ever changing needs.
TQM- Total Quality Management
Total Quality Management is a system which monitors the status of quality all around the organization. TQM is all about planning, organizing, directing, control, and assurance. Total quality is known as total as it contains two qualities: The quality of the satisfying of the shareholders, and quality from the products point of view.
'TQM is a management philosophy that seeks to integrate all organizational functions (marketing, finance, design, engineering, and production, customer service, etc.) to focus on meeting customer needs and organizational objectives'  www.isixsigma.com.
TQM the three letters in this word has their own individual :
T-(Total): Its Involving the whole organization
Q-(Quality): Its deals first and for most with quality and different quality standard.
M-(Management): It deals with management and its different issues like planning, development, organizing, controlling etc.
The fundamental Activities in TQM:
Absolute Commitment from the management and all the employees
Meeting The absolute customer requirements
Decreasing development cycle times
Proper Demand Flow Manufacturing
Efficiency Improvement teams
Cutting product and service costs
Hi-tech Systems to make way for improvement
Proper Employee involvement and empowering the employees
Recognition with celebration
Attaining Challenging quantified goals and benchmarking
Focus on processes development plans
ISO - International Organization for Standardization
The International Organization for Standardization which widely known as ISO, is an an international-standard-setting and awarding body. This organization consists of representatives from diversified various national standards organizations. This organization founded on 23 February 1947, the organization promulgates excellent proprietary and business and commercial standards. It headquarter is in Geneva, Switzerland.
ISO (International Organization for Standardization) is the world's major developer and publisher of various International Standards.
'ISO is also a association of the national standards institutes of 159 countries, one single member per country, with a Central Secretariat in Geneva, Switzerland, which controls the system'  www.iso.org.
ISO have different standardization systems for different industries. Of various standardization that ISO have some have become very popular among various world standard companies.
Which provides the necessities for quality management systems, is now properly established as a worldly implemented standard for ensuring the absolute ability to satisfy quality requirements and to develop customer satisfaction by providing supplier-customer relationships?
This standard has the requirements for environmental management systems; it is more related to global relevance for organizations who wish to operate their business according to environmentally suitable manner?
Definition of Quality Culture
It is being assumed and believed that higher quality of products and services can only be accepted from organizations that have superior "quality cultures". A quality culture is defined by certain attitudes, abilities, and behaviour of each and every member of the organization.
Â Quality culture attitudes and abilities can be defined as the level of which 'self-controls the employees have in their duties. Generally, there are three main turning for employee self-control:
The employee must know what the quality goals are.
They must be able to understand and recognize quality shortcomings.
Have the proper means and authority to correct any errors/defects during production.
J. M. Juran is one of the inventors of the idea of quality management. In Quality planning and analysis , he explained that to be better in quality every company must pursue two courses of action:
Develop proper technologies which can produce products and processes that meet customers' expectations
Build a quality culture around the organization, a culture one which continually views quality as the basic goal.
'Juran goes further to say "technology touches the head, but a quality culture touches the heart"  (Juran 1993).
'Quality culture is basically incorporation of quality in the overall system of an organization which leads to a positive internal environment and creation of delighted customers'  www.blurtit.com.
An altered point of view at different levels of administration is the basic tool
for applying of a perfect quality culture. At initial stage quality, culture begins with managers who understand the importance of the systems and believe in its implications. 'Organizations should not live in the past and they should not fear the changes that are required to achieve a quality culture'  Phillip W. Bowen (1996). So in order to build such kind of culture a changed point of view is important. In addition, it can be achieved either through self-realization at the top management or through trainings and workshops or following of benchmark organizations.
Quality Culture: United Kingdom
As one of developed western countries, UK seems to have a higher end quality culture and values. Here the companies have stick rules and policies to guide them through various difficulties in an organization. Although in UK quality culture some time gets bias under the British culture, which is a matter of fact, make it weak against quality culture of United States.
From my point of view UK, s quality culture is based on various practical issues, and which is tend to differ from other developing countries. There are main six focal point of UKs quality culture:
Everybody in the organization work together as a team (Teamwork)
The distance between subordinates and superior is limited.
Proper open communications are appreciated.
Access to various needed information materials
The focus is on organizational process and its improvement.
Learning and knowledge developments are appreciated.
Quality Culture: Bangladesh
As a part of one of the developing countries, this small country situated on a sub continent of Asia has a long way to go to reach to a state of standard quality culture. This country has its unique quality culture, but it does not mean the elements of its quality culture are superior but as a matter of fact it is mostly differs from other countries. Like UK, Bangladesh also have some basic focal point in its quality culture based onto which the organizations in this country operates are:
Everybody works separately for himself
The superior always right
The communications flow mostly one-way
Share of information is limited
Working on projects on a individual basis
High competition among co workers rather than team work
Failure is unaccepted
TASK03: ORGANIZATIONAL PERFORMANCE
Identification of Opportunity for quality Improvement
A company's action plan is the compilation of various rules and regulations set out evaluate and identify the quality weakness. company's action plan should contain the following items:
Identify the problem
Identify the elements causing the problem
Evaluate the alternatives to solve the problems
Decision regarding the implementations
Monitoring and evaluating the effects of the implementation process
Whatever the problems is the management had to make proper decision regarding how to solve it. A plan can have several objectives and a objectives naturally can have multiple sub objectives in order to make it simplified and achievable. In setting objectives and targets, the most reasonable action would be to break down a objectives into small tasks and relate it to proper time schedule and deadlines. A good action plan must be simple, understandable, and most importantly changeable at any point in time. The management of any organization must have an action plan which not only identifies the problems and its causes but will alsosuggest ways to solve it.
There are certain standards and factors that can help a company to realize its true objectives:
Mission Statements: is the reminder of what the company truly stands for.
Quality Audit: is the proper and systematic process of examination of a quality system carried out by internal or external quality auditors.
Service standards: Evaluating the services standards can also can help the company to gain practical knowledge about their quality status.
ISO: Is the awarding body for various industrial standards, and report from this awarding body can also help a company to assess its current position with comparison to where it wants to be.
Monitoring Organisational Performance
Previously scholars where mainly focused on performance monitoring of employees, setting goals , employees performances towards the goals, rewarding or firing the staff etc. But things have changed a lot, theories now have proven that an organization also have its separate identity apart from its work force
It is very important for an organization to assess its operations regularly in order to estimate its growth and scopes for improvement. An assessment can be done internally or externally depends on the objectives of the assessments. There are various category for an organizational assessment:
Estimating Organizational Growth etc.
There are also various popular tools available to make these kinds of assessments. A well-planned assessment usually has these tools in it. Some of these tools are:
Comprehensive questioners/ Survey Analysis
Strength weakness opportunity and threats (SWOT) Analysis
At present quality control is a well published issue. Liked the developed countries small and developing countries are also becoming more and more aware about this topic. Multinational companies, specially the production based as well as the service based companies are becoming more active in preserving and improving their quality standards. Because the companies now knows that if they fail to create and maintain certain quality standards in the eyes of their target market segments then there is a good chance that they may lose a good portion of their market share. So from my point of view I believe that a company should stand by its quality standards at east exactly what it published to be.