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There is no hard and fast definition of quality as it is so relative. But many experts have tried to define it into simple terms like essential characteristics, superior; while some dictionaries have broad acceptance in different organizations such as customer satisfaction is in quality provided to them. As define by the American Society for Quality (ASQ) and American National Standards Institute (ANSI), quality is the total attributes and characteristics of a service and product that has potential to convince individual necessities.
Quality is the continuing procedure of developing and supporting relationships by evaluating, expecting and satisfying stated plus indirect needs. In different words quality is a transitory observation that takes place after something in our surroundings interacts with us in the pre rational understanding that arrives by intellectual consideration acquire and commence establishing instructions. Evaluation of the consequential orders afterward stated as fine or awful quality value.
Quality management does not only focused on the quality of product although the ways to attain it. Quality assurance, quality improvement and quality control are the three major components of quality management.
Quality control is a procedure engaged to guarantee a certain quality level in a service or product. Quality control might also include such actions and policies in a business setup which allow and restrict the certain features of the service or product. Their basic aim is that the services and products that they are offering should be appropriate, reliable and cost-effective.
Basically, quality control includes evaluation of product, service and procedure to at least maintain minimum level of quality. The quality control team assesses the product and services and tries to find out those product and services which do not meet up an organization’s precise standards of quality. If any defect is identified, the task of a quality control team or specialized might includes restrict production provisionally. Depending on product and service, also the sort of problem specified.
Quality assurance is action contain an evaluating methods taken by the employees who are not concerned with the record collection. It is mostly done by someone outside the company. The assessment should be carrying out on a complete record which follows the Quality control methods.
Quality management is a modern phenomenon. Urbane societies that hold up the arts and crafts allow consumers to select products acquiring privileged quality standards than normal products. There were civilizations where duties of a master craftsmen and artists were to direct their working area, manage and instruct their employees. The boss of the craftsman set the rules of their work and assesses others work and asks for modification if required. The major limitation of this approach was that fairly only some products could be created; on in contrast a benefit was that every piece produced might be specifically mold to fit the customer’s need. This approach to quality and the practices exercised were main contributions in introducing quality management as a management science.
In the era of industrial revolution, the concept of mass production minimizes the significance of craftsman because now in this era, the production was not for the limited number of people but the manufacturing the same products for the masses. The father of scientific management, Winslow Taylor wanted the growth in the competition in industries. Henry Ford was considering as an important person who introduces the process and quality management practices in to scientific methods. Karl F. Benz, the German, was working on production practices and parallel assembly, but at the same time, the mass production was also begun. At the same time, in the other part of the world, in North America, companies were mainly focusing on lowering the cost and improve the efficiency of product.
In 1924, Walter A. Shewhart was the first to introduce proper method for quality control fir using statistical method for production, which was the major step towards the progression of quality management. Later on, W. Edward Deming in United States, applied statistical process control method throughout World War II, which mainly focusing on effective improves in quality in the production of weapons.
Over the last decade, the nationalize perception of quality management has altered. Subsequent to the WWII, Japan worked on the quality improvements as their national agenda for the reconstruction of their economy. They also took help from Deming, Shewart and Juran and etc. from 1950 onwards in Japan, Deming worked on Shewhart’s theories.ous for his work which is found on productivity, quality and competitive position. From 1970s and onwards, Japanese progressed in their maintenance of quality in products.
Customers classify quality as a vital feature in products and services whereas; Suppliers categorize quality as a major division between their own contributions and those of opponents. In the past two decades the quality gap has been significantly determined between competitive products and services. Many countries have progress the values of quality in order to meet up customer demands and global standards.
The pressure of quality thinking has broaden to non-traditional implications of manufacturing, widen into service sectors and into areas such as sales, marketing and customer service. In the book Managing Quality, professor D. Garvin defines many perspectives of quality which are as follows:
Judgmental or Transcendent Perspective: The judgmental perspective is also known as transcendent perspective and philosophical perspective. According to Shewhart, this perspective of quality is absolute and globally recognizes an uncompromising point of standards and high achievement. Judgmental perspective is the basis from which all other perspectives of quality are derived which includes, Pirsig’s quality as the Buddha, Deming’s 14 steps, Shewhart’s quality as mentioned before as goodness and eventually Taguchi’s clear consideration of societal welfare. It is easily estimated by looking at the product and there is no subjective judgment needed. According to Peter, quality has become an important cultural worth and a societal value. Ishikawa and Lu also sustained the cultural phenomenon of quality. They evaluate the interconnection in terms of, education, religion and social class and reimbursement system in Japanese culture. By following this perspective of quality, today’s developing economic indicators of many countries like, Japan, Sweden and the U.S. has become an important cultural and social issue of customer satisfaction at the national level.
Product-based Perspective: It is the combination of a precise, quantifiable variable and those distinctions in quality is imitating variance in magnitude of several product characteristics. For instance: Quality of a product and price perceived relationship of product.
According to Kotler’s categorization, product is a bunch of need-gratifying characteristics. In the time of soviet government, quality was the teams of characteristics that make it clear the utilization of product suitability.
This approach is supported by ISO 9004 defining quality as fitness of use, reliability, performance and safety. Product-based perspective of quality actually suits engineers because mostly they are the one concern with translating product necessities into physical dimension that can be produced. Garvin (1988) states that if there will be any difference in the quality, it will automatically affect the quantity of an attribute the product possess.
User-based Perspective: In user- based approach quality is elaborated as fitness for planned utilization. People have different needs, desires and wants thus distinguish quality values. For instance: Nissan is producing ‘dud’ car models in American marketplaces from the trade name of Datson that the American consumers didn’t like.
In user-based approach of quality, the quality of a product is indentified by the satisfaction of human needs and wants. Deming emphasizes on the user-based approach by saying that a product is never completely be considered as qualified until it fulfill both the concealed and external wants.
The user-based perspective doesn’t discard the manufacturing quality as a strategic objective but offer framework for it. It is most popular with people in the field of marketing which believe that quality exists in the mind of observer or the user of the product rather than the manufacturer who set standards for the product.
Value-based Perspective: This perspective of quality place the quality of a product in the line of competing products but try to sold the product at lesser price. Value-based perspective identifies the relationship between the product quality and the product cost. In a laymen term, a product is classified as a high value product when it exhibits a high level of compliance and low production cost.
It is basically the development of user-based approaches. Garvin (1988) define value-based view of quality of product which provides compliance or performance at reasonable price. For example, an expensive running shoe could not be a quality product because less people want to buy it. This approach also studies that lower cost will always demand for higher consumption.
Manufacturing-based Perspective: This approach to quality defines in a way that is the expected effect of a manufacturing and engineering practices otherwise compliance to specification. In simple words engineering specification of products are vital.
Garvin proposed that the manufacturing-based approach of quality have relevance to a product’s amount of obedience to design and manufacturing specifications. In growing international market places, manufacturing-based classification of quality have to go beyond culture, involving that goods of excellent industrialized quality in Japan should also have the features of elevated quality in Germany. The Quality which is base on conformity does not require that the product should fulfill consumer wants but it basically make it clear that the product satisfies or outshine design and engineering standards.
Managers try to ensure the desire specification of product quality by reducing and stabilizing variations. Shewhart emphasizes on the manufacturing process that it can be studied through statistical data which can improve the control of quality. Such improvements will lead to less scrap, fewer defects and eventually low cost.
Social-loss Perspective: This is the alternative perspective of quality which was developed by Taguchi. It suggest that quality is a great loss to society by the product after being transported and other loss causes by its built-in functions. The effects of losses are either the harmful side effects of the product or the inconsistency in product functions.
Economist named losses that are cause by harmful side effects as external diseconomies of production or consumption. Diseconomies of consumption take place when uncompensated loss to others caused by consumer’s actions whereas, Diseconomies of production arise when a manufacturer’s proceedings outcome in an unrewarded damages towards others.
Social-loss approach would categorize cigarettes like a low quality goods due to the harmful externalities connected with its usage, even if cigarette brand has both high customer demand and high compliance.
The social-loss function approach to quality appears to be the most prevalent of all the classifications since it openly make a distinction on the influence of quality on all facet of society. Quality-function losses attributable to changeability are theoretically comprehensive of the manufacturing-based perspective to quality while damages arise because of poor quality design and compliance. Consumer needs and wants, both hidden and known, and product-associated values are also wholly measured through the externalities factor of Taguchi’s explanation. In this regard, the loss function definition is general of the product-based approach of quality, the value-based perspective (product associate costs are lesser than product-associate benefits) and the user-based perspective (losses take place as customer’s open and concealed wants are not fulfilled). Taguchi’s even deals with the transcendent perspective by completely making the value opinion that is a loss towards society because of poor quality are dreadful outcomes and social gains are good quality outcomes.
Quality management is essential for the survival of institution in the industry. The quality in the institution can be seen from various perspectives by which they can able to maintain their quality and stand in the line of competitive brands in the market. With the emerging of new brands in the market every institution is facing threat to sustain its position in the market. So, by looking at every perspective of quality and by giving equal importance to every approach of quality, one would able to achieve consumer expectations and winning the heart of the consumers is the core purpose to attain and sustain excellence in business.
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