Total Quality Management: Features Of Total Quality Management

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Total Quality Management (TQM) is a management strategy aimed at embedding awareness of quality in all organizational processes. TQM has been widely used in manufacturing, education, government and service industries, as well as NASA space and science programs. Total Quality provides an umbrella under which everyone in the organization can strive and create customer satisfaction at continually lower real costs.

"TQM is a management approach for an organization, centered on quality, based on the participation of all its members and aiming at long-term success through customer satisfaction and benefits to all members of the organization and to society."

TQM is not a technique rather a philosophy of quality being everyone’s
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For eg: a Secretary is a supplier to a manager, who is the customer. The secretarial duties must be carried out to the satisfaction of the manager. The chain also includes customers and suppliers outside the business. The chain remains intact if the supplier satisfies the customer. It is broken if a person or item of equipment does not satisfy the needs of the customer. Failure to meet the requirements in any part of the quality chain creates problems such as delays in the next stage of production (b) Company policy and Accountability:
There will only be improvement in quality if there is a company wide policy. TQM must start from the top with the most senior executive and spread throughout the business to every employee. People must be totally committed and take a ‘Pride in the Job’. This might be considered as job enrichment. Lack of commitment, particularly at the top causes problems. For example if the managing director lacks commitment, employees lower down are unlikely to commit themselves. TQM stresses the role of the individuals and aims to make everyone accountable for their own
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Quality circles are small groups of staff, usually from the same area of work, who meet on a regular and voluntarily basis. They attempt to solve problems and make suggestions about how to improve various aspects of the business. Issues such as pay and conditions are normally excluded. After discussion the team will present the ideas and solutions to the management. Teams are also involved in implementing and monitoring the effectiveness of solutions.
Quality circles have been widely used in the car industry and also in service sectors such as banking and finance.
A quality circle is a participatory management technique that enlists the help of employees in solving problems related to their own jobs. Circles are formed of employees working together in an operation who meet at intervals to discuss problems of quality and to devise solutions for improvements. Quality circles have an autonomous character, are usually small, and are led by a supervisor or a senior worker. Employees who participate in quality circles usually receive training in formal problem-solving

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