Under the strategic objective of protecting customer trust, Woolworths has a defined policy that applies to all its business units to ensure quality is maintained at the highest level and is consequently a positive reflection of the overall Woolworths brand.
This policy is entitled ‘Woolworths Quality Assurance Standard “protecting customer trust”, version 6 June 2009’. Woolworths has identified that a key element to its quality management strategy for its business is a priority focus on its suppliers. Suppliers are defined as trade partners and as such elevate them to share the responsibility with Woolworths to achieve the quality outcomes set out in the ‘Woolworths Quality Assurance’ (WQA) standard certification. The trade partners must be fully proficient and compliant with all the stringent requirements of the WQA. In doing this, Woolworths achieves a high degree of effectiveness in quality management of its suppliers’ products.
Woolworths places great importance on global food safety standards and ethical sourcing of products. These are a major part of its quality assurance requirements. It is here that its WQA standard certification procedures take effect. To become accepted as a Woolworths’ supplier, trade partners must successfully complete the WQA certification audit and to continue as suppliers they must pass frequent follow-up audits. This enables Woolworths to work towards achieving international retailing best practice.
In addition, WQA addresses a number of other key aspects of quality management such as process control, good manufacturing practice, training, continuous improvement and customer focus which all reinforce its quality management effectiveness. “Process Control’ is a key component of quality management to ensure the integrity of products. In this regard, Woolworths’ suppliers must have and must conform to a ‘Hazard...