Competition is getting harder and becoming global. Companies now have to be more responsive, offer a better product and keep improving. Total quality management (TQM) increases customer satisfaction by boosting quality. It does this by motivating the workforce and improving the way the company operates. In an increasingly competitive market, firms with a continuous improvement culture and external focus are more likely to survive and prosper. TQM is considered an important catalyst in this context. What is TQM?
TQM is an approach to improving the effectiveness and flexibilities of business as a whole. It is essentially a way of organising and involving the whole organisation, every department, every activity and every single person at every level. TQM ensures that the management adopts a strategic overview of the quality and focuses on prevention rather than inspection. Objectives of TQM
o Meeting the customer's requirements is the primary objective and the key to organisational survival and growth. o The second objective of TQM is continuous improvement of quality. The management should stimulate the employees in becoming increasingly competent and creative. o Third, TQM aims at developing the relationship of openness and trust among the employees at all levels in the organisation. Significance of TQM
The importance of TQM lies in the fact that it encourages innovation, makes the organisation adaptable to change, motivates people for better quality, and integrates the business arising out of a common purpose and all these provide the organisation with a valuable and distinctive competitive edge. Elements of TQM
The various elements of TQM are
o Be customer focused
It requires the company to check customers' attitudes regularly and includes the idea of internal customers as well as external ones. o Do it right the first time
This means avoiding rework, i.e., cutting the amount of defective work. o Constantly improve