Brief Assignment description
In BUS 445 Total Quality Management assignment you are required to recommend a proposed quality improvement plan based on the COPIS model
Quality management ascertains the consistency of the products or services of an organization. It involves a formal system documenting the procedures, responsibilities, and processes aimed at achieving quality objectives and policies (Goetsch, 2014). Quality management helps in the coordination and direction of the activities of an organization to achieve customer satisfaction and consistently improve the organization’s efficiency and effectiveness. In relation to the widget manufacturing department, this paper recommends approaches for process improvement, supplier management, input control, output control, and customer-based recommendations.
Quality Improvement Plan Justification
Many organizations have business processes that are basically documented. Moreover, the businesses also have performance measurement. Looking at the widget manufacturing department and its 2 per cent rate of internal rejection and 5 per cent return within warranty period, prompts the question of whether the manufacturing process in place is effective enough. Nonetheless, the COPIS model together with the six sigma can help answer this question (Goetsch, 2014). This model involves an approach where business processes are looked at and perhaps streamlined from the perspective of the customer. Such an application of COPIS can be termed as operational COPIS which is limited to the scope of a single project such as the manufacture of widgets.
From the rate of internal product rejection and the percentage of returns before warranty expiration, it is apparent that the department is in need of a quality improvement plan. This calls for the application of the COPIS tool and the six sigma to review and improve the manufacturing process. COPIS has shown from experience, its importance in giving businesses a firm foundation for the continued improvement of the appropriate business processes and measures of performance. In this manner, most continuous improvement plans have been based on the model and it has been a vital pillar for business performance and sustained improvement.
Approaches to Customer Service
The satisfaction of customers is a vital component for the success of an organization and it highly relies on the behavior of the employees of the organization. It is essential to perceive customers as assets and that their preferences, wants and consumption behavior vary. Apparent quality of products from the organization poses the biggest influence on the satisfaction of the customers (Hill & Alexander, 2017). Furthermore, in relation to customer loyalty, customer satisfaction forms a crucial element in contrast to other aspects such as image. Generally, customers buy products to satisfy their needs in money terms. Therefore, the department needs to set prices that match the quality of their product which should be able to attract customers and maintain enduring affiliation.
The manufacturing department needs to ensure that it is offering full products corresponding to their value moneywise. This facilitate an increase in the number of customers and creates a long term connection between them and the business. Providing high-end products helps attract new customers through existing ones when they provide and share information about the company’s products and services (Hill & Alexander, 2017). To ensure the attention and loyalty of the customers it is important to provide products that are most competitive and favorable in the competing market. Attaining customer satisfaction translates to attaining customer loyalty.
Output control mainly focuses on the measurable outcomes in an organization. the department managers have the duty to establish the acceptable performance level, ensure the relevant employees understand the expectations and examine if the performance is at the level expected after which they make any necessary changes (Lee et al., 2016). Output can be measured through the evaluation of aspects such as the levels of customer satisfaction, sales quotas and profits goal achievement.
Input control regulates resource input and should be described in job satisfaction requests. Input control focuses on resource acquisition and delineates aspects like values, skills, motivators and abilities (Lee et al., 2016). They identify resource inputs that are hard to measure and pointed towards objectives that are attained by way of performance and behavior. Approaches to input controls include job requirements for example level of communication and writing skills, experience, and level of education.
Process-Improvement and Management Approaches
Process improvement relies on effective problem identification, good solution development and implementation. To achieve this, it is crucial to have an approach to problem solution that is both systematic and founded on facts. An organized approach to problem solving gives all the workers a common language and communication tools. Furthermore, it makes sure that the solutions are developed in an objective manner and not on the basis of rash judgements and opinions. Many process improvement approaches have been developed over time, each approach depending on the type of organization (Lee et al., 2016).
Such approaches have shared themes despite the fact that each approach is unique in its own way. These themes include problem redefinition and analysis: involving the collection and organization of information, data and assumption analysis, and problem reexamination for novel perspectives aimed at attaining a workable definition of the problem; idea generation: which involves brainstorming to come up with probable solutions; idea evaluation and selection: that involves determining if the ideas are valuable and can achieve the goal of solving the problem; and idea implementation: which involves selling the solution to attain acceptance from individuals who need to use it. The Deming and the six sigma approaches are proposed and discussed below.
The Deming Cycle
This entails a simple version of the scientific approach of process improvement. This approach involves four steps which include:
- Designing the product using relevant tests.
- Making the product and test both in the lab and in the line of production.
- Selling the product.
- Testing of the product in use via market studies intended to establish how it is perceived by the users and the reasons for nonusers not buying it.
The Deming’s approach offers a simple structure for the development, testing, and implementation of process changes that will result in improvement (Dudin et al., 2015). At the plan stage, the current situation is studied and the process described (which entails the COPIS model); customer expectations reviewed, data gathered, problems identified; notions of causes tested, and solutions and plans of action developed.
At the do stage, plan implementation on trial basis is conducted. This involves lab trials and pilot production in evaluation of the recommended solutions to obtain objective data. At the study stage, evaluation of results helps check if the proposed plan works correctly. Learning and recording and assessing if more issues need to be addressed is carried out at this stage (Dudin et al., 2015). In the final act stage, the proposed solution is standardized and implemented as the final plan and communicated to all the members of the department.
Six Sigma Principle
Six sigma integrates a number of simple statistical approaches, quality control and improvement that have been widely applied. It is a process improvement approach aimed at eliminating defects in the process of design and production. The six sigma is an approach that influences the whole department based on the objective of attaining continued process improvement. Many global organizations have adopted this principle and realized many positive project outcomes (Goetsch, 2014). It is elucidated as the DMAIC method for the implementation of six sigma approaches.
At the define stage, the problem, problem factors, teams and obtainable objectives are defined. The measure stage involves data collection and calculation of the capabilities of the current processes. The analyze stage is where collected and past data is analyzed and the definition of the effective factors and variation reasons are conducted. The improve stage entails the implementation of the design and analysis, the improvement activities are also suggested, chosen and applied in solving the problem. The control stage entails the stage where the efficacy of the improvements are established and standards set (Goetsch, 2014). The focus of the six sigma approach on the reduction of defects in the manufacturing process makes it a suitable process improvement and management approach for the widget manufacture department.
Supplier-management approach to improve input and supplier quality
Supplier management involves the activities carried out by a buying organization to evaluate and enhance the performance of the supplier and simplify the continued improvement in the supplier and input quality (Quigley et al., 2018). Presently, supply chains entail vital business process that can be viewed to encompass several important support and value creation processes like purchasing, receiving, logistics, supplier selection and measurement of performance.
They help develop a competitive edge in flexibility, reduction of costs and delivery. The department needs to have flexible and effective processes to generate, release, and document instructions of manufacturing and conveyance from the point of receiving orders to the point of supplying to the customer (Lee et al., 2016). Therefore, supplier management is based on the principles of acknowledging the strategic significance of the suppliers in attaining business goals, specifically reducing ownership costs; creating win-win connections via lasting collaborations with the suppliers instead of adversaries; and instituting trust through transparency and honesty hence leading to mutual benefits.
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Additionally, considering the challenges faced by a manufacturing department, it is vital to distinguish between the activities that basically help the business learn more on the condition of the capabilities of the supplier such as auditing and plant visits and those activities that are mainly deigned for the improvement of the supplier quality such as training of the supplier and assigning buyer staff to develop the technical operations of the supplier.
From here, the modelling method that integrates the two activities can be conceptualized bearing in mind the amount to be invested in the supplier improvement activities. In addition the stage at which investing in the supplier will offer good value is established (Quigley et al., 2018). Therefore, to improve supplier quality the manufacturing department should develop a model for decision support to manage the risk of the buyer supplier development and realize the importance of learning about the ability of the supplier to enhance quality by developing the supplier.
Every business aims at establishing long-lasting relationships with the customers. To achieve this, the demands and needs of the customers need to be appreciated. Customer satisfaction is a vital component of overcoming the failures the department is facing. Therefore, it is crucial for the department to realize the exact needs of the customers and how to meet them at the highest quality possible. In this way, customer loyalty is attained and is vital in the market performance of the business. In addition satisfied customers create act as marketing ambassadors for the department’s products as they share the information on products with new customers.
Dudin, M., Frolova, E., Gryzunova, N., & Shuvalova, E. (2015). The Deming Cycle (PDCA) concept as an efficient tool for continuous quality improvement in the agribusiness.
Goetsch, D. L., & Davis, S. B. (2014). Quality management for organizational excellence. Upper Saddle River, NJ: pearson.
Hill, N., & Alexander, J. (2017). The handbook of customer satisfaction and loyalty measurement. Routledge.
Lee, Y. C., Wang, Y. C., Lu, S. C., Hsieh, Y. F., Chien, C. H., Tsai, S. B., & Dong, W. (2016). An empirical research on customer satisfaction study: A consideration of different levels of performance. SpringerPlus, 5(1), 1577
Quigley, J., Walls, L., Demirel, G., MacCarthy, B. L., & Parsa, M. (2018). Supplier quality improvement: The value of information under uncertainty. European Journal of Operational Research, 264(3), 932-947.
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