Total Quality Management (TQM) is a management approach to long-term success through customer satisfaction. TQM is a method by which management and employees can become involved in the continuous improvement of the production of goods and services: all members of an organization participate in improving processes, products, services and the culture in which they work. It is a combination of quality and management tools aimed at increasing business and reducing losses due to wasteful practices. TQM originated in the 1950's and has steadily become more popular since the early 1980's. The methods for implementing this approach come from the teachings of such quality leaders as Philip B. Crosby, W. Edwards Deming, Armand V. Feigenbaum, Kaoru Ishikawa and Joseph M. Juran. A core concept in implementing TQM is Deming’s 14 points , a set of management practices to help companies increase their quality and productivity: 1. Create constancy of purpose for improving products and services; 2. Adopt the philosophy of the new economic era;
3. Cease dependence on inspection to achieve quality;
4. End the practice of awarding business on price alone; instead, minimize total cost by working with a single supplier; 5. Improve constantly and forever every process for planning, production and service; 6. Institute training on the job;
7. Adopt and institute leadership;
8. Drive out fear;
9. Break down barriers between staff areas;
10. Eliminate slogans, exhortations and targets for the workforce; 11. Eliminate numerical quotas for the workforce and numerical goals for management; 12. Remove barriers that rob people of pride of workmanship, and eliminate the annual rating or merit system; 13. Institute a vigorous program of education and self-improvement for everyone; 14. Put everybody in the company to work accomplishing the transformation. Hence, Total Quality is a description of the culture, attitude and organization of a company that strives to provide customers with products and services that satisfy their needs. The culture requires quality in all aspects of the company's operations, with processes being done right the first time and defects and waste eradicated from operations. TQM is a 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. In fact, in TQM the organization is seen as a collection of processes: its simple objective is "Do the right things, right the first time, every time". The characteristics that are common to companies that successfully implement TQM in their daily operations are: ♦ Strive for owner/customer satisfaction and employee satisfaction; ♦ Strive for accident-free jobsites;
♦ Recognize that the owner/customer provides the revenue while the employees are responsible for the profit;
♦ Recognize the need for measurement and fact-based decision making; ♦ Arrange for employees to become involved in helping the company improve; ♦ Train extensively;
♦ Work hard at improving communication inside and outside the company; ♦ Use teams of employees to improve processes;
♦ Place a strong emphasis on the right kind of leadership, and provide supervisors with a significant amount of leadership training;
♦ Involve subcontractors and suppliers, requiring them to adopt TQM; ♦ Strive for continuous improvement.
To be competitive in today’s market, it is essential for companies to provide more consistent quality and value to their owners/customers. Such goal demands that a continuous improvement (CI) process be established within the company in order to provide quality management. Continuous improvement in a management context means a never-ending effort to expose and eliminate root causes of problems [Deming, 1986]. Usually, it...