Quality Management in Business
Table of Contents
Identify and define key quality issues in terms of efficiency, service delivery, service levels, customer satisfaction and resourcing.
Quality is a relative concept and related to the delivery of product or services to the consumer segment of business. Quality would depend upon achieving the customer desired satisfaction level with the product or service delivered. There can be several issues with the quality for the products or service delivered and issues may include such as efficiency, service levels, service delivery, resourcing and customer satisfaction. Issues in internal service quality of an organization would be related to the service delivery, service level and efficiency. Efficiency in the organization would measure the way in which resources such as time, effort and money has been used so as to attain the desired objective (Munro, 2002). An organization may face quality issues wherein low efficiency would be attained against the desired set. Service delivery shows the process adopted by organization to deliver its services to consumers. There can be issues with service delivery in terms of time delay or higher price. Level of service indicates the consumer perception for service delivery and depending upon services delivered by organization issues would be identified in service levels. Customer satisfaction represents the comparison of actual value delivered to consumers against the expected value through service or goods delivered to them. Service delivery made with lesser benefits to consumer would result into lower customer satisfaction levels. Resourcing defines the implementation of resources for the organization so as to meet their objective of satisfying customer with delivered services.
Review processes of inspection and assurance in mapping of call-flow of the organisation.
Inspection and assurance can be considered as the tools for measuring quality through the business operations. These tools are able to ensure that benchmark for the quality has been attained in the organizational environment (Rose, 2005). Tools such as inspection and assurance can be implemented in order to ensure benchmarking process for call flow system in the present context. Inspection can be done in order to review the performance level for mapping of call flow. Inspection process would involve evaluation analysis and gauges applied for the call flow in organization. This would ensure the quality of call mapping process in organizational context. Quality assurance would ensure the continuous monitoring of different aspects for call mapping process. This would also ensure that grade levels are maintained for the call mapping process.
Identify a range of approaches to quality management and explain the similarities and distinctions between various methods in the context of contact centre management.
There are basically three quality management tools which can be applied in context to contact centre management organization and these are quality circle, lean tool and Kaizen. In addition to this cost of poor quality present one of the major quality management approaches which contain three aspects which are quality control, quality planning and quality improvement (Paul, 2008). There are major three authors providing approaches to quality management and these are Deming, Juran and P Crosby. Similarity and differences in their approaches can be given as under:
§ Consumer demand standards: According to Deming and Juran customer is the centre of the production system. According to Crosby demand standards depends upon certain specifications and these specification are not the vague measurement.
§ Quality improvement responsibility: According to Deming responsibility for quality improvement is decided from the board room. As per Juran quality should reflect the fitness for use and top management’s involvement is important in quality improvement initiatives. According to Crosby quality which can give zero defects can be constituted by developing processes in accordance to that from the top management.
§ Quality goals: According to Deming goal of quality is to meet consumer need and make continuous improvement. Juran suggests that quality should continually improve while Crosby states that quality can be developed through zero defect construction.
Explain what is meant by customer satisfaction and how the organization can understand the customers and their needs. Discuss the pros and cons of elements like: responding to customer demand, customer expectations, meeting or exceeding customer expectations, value for money, added value, repeat custom, etc.
Customer satisfaction would be defined by the level of benefits derived by consumers from the products & services delivered by an organization. An organization can attain higher customer satisfaction by correctly responding to consumer demand (Cianfrani & West, 2009). Responding to customer demand would enhance customer satisfaction while limitation for responding to consumer demand would be to make changes in the product developed by organization. Customer expectation need to be match with value delivery in order to enhance consumer satisfaction and limitation for higher consumer expectation would create problems for the organization. Meeting or exceeding customer expectation would improve customer satisfaction level while exceeding customer expectation would require higher expenditure for the organization. Value for money would be the benefits gained by consumer in product offering against price paid, a product which can offer value for money would enhance customer satisfaction while such product would not be able to charge premium pricing from consumers. Added value would attract consumers and enhance satisfaction while it would require higher cost. Repeat customers are beneficial as they require lesser marketing expenses while organization has to deliver high value to maintain them (Westcott, 2003).
Explain what is meant by continuous improvement and identify the areas of the organization which needs to be reviewed continuously to improve quality of services.
Continuous improvement refers to the process of making improvement in the quality delivered by the organization. This would be of long term benefit for organization and enhances efficiency in organization. Kaizen is one of the processes implemented for continuous improvement by Japanese. There is requirement for continuous improvement in complaint management and service recovery system in present context.
Illustrate the added values that good quality management and service can provide to the organizations and staff. For example: lower costs, reduced waste, saving time, reducing need for support activities, customer loyalty
Added value for an organization would be the different between cost of input and the importance of output delivered by the organization. Added value would turn a valuable into traded goods or service. There can be several examples through which added value can be gained in order to gain consumer satisfaction and examples of elements providing added value are reduced waste, saving time, lower costs, customer loyalty and reduced need for support activities (Thareja, 2008). Reducing wastage in organization would add value by offering lower cost to the consumers, saving time would help organization to deliver goods in lower time, lower cost would benefit consumers as cost saving would be passed to them, high customer loyalty would allow organizations to offer goods at low price and lower requirement for support activities would reduce overhead expenses.
Describe the types of information that has to be made available to customers and compare it with existing practice. For example opening times, location, price lists. Also, explain the importance of effective marketing in the context of customer service industry where the staff are serving the customer and at the same time marketing the services.
There are several types of information which needs to be provided to consumers such as opening time which represent time when availability of goods would start, location denotes place where services or goods would be available, price list represent the cost which a consumer need to bear in order to purchase the goods (Littlefield & Roberts, 2012). Marketing is important for the service marketers wherein marketers identify and deliver on consumer needs. Hence staff in the service marketing would be serving the customers along with marketing the services.
Identify and explain key performance measurements employed in the organization and compare them with a benchmark quality management methodology.
Performance measurement for quality of goods & service is important in order to manage the each step from production to service. Kaizen method or benchmarking method can help in order to measure performance. There are four factors based on which performance is measured and these are organization performance, standard of customer satisfaction, standard of complaint and previous performance.
Evaluate the benefit of user and non-user surveys in determining customer needs.
Importance of user survey can be understood as users of a particular product would be important in order to suggest on improvement required for the product. There are three factors which can be known from user’s survey and these are quality for products or goods, value for money and delivery time (Nederpelt, 2012). Non users of a particular product would be key information source for particular product or service so as to know the trends prevailing in market, expectations of market and weakness observed in the quality management system of the organization.
Devise a customer survey and list the methods of consultation that have to be employed in order to encourage participation by under-represented groups.
Focus group & open meeting methods can be employed in order to encourage participation by underrepresented groups in a survey. In focus group discussion a group is formed and a discussion topic is given so as to develop focused discussion regarding particular phenomenon. Open meeting can be conducted in organizational environment with staff so as to know about general issues faced and probable solutions to the problem faced.
Identify the value of complaints procedures and produce a plan to implement remedial actions and measures in order to improve the quality of customer service.
Due to difference in consumer view there would be several complaints made and complaint procedure for any organization provides the second chance to organization for improving upon their service quality (Juran and Joseph, 2010). Some of the major positive impacts of complaint management procedure can be given as under:
§ Improvement in customer loyalty
§ Engage customer
§ Improvement in quality
§ Continuous customer feedback
§ Higher customer retention
Review operational performance issues through self-assessment, in order to determine the organization’s current state of health.
Self assessment in organizational environment would be assessing your own area of weakness and strength which would help in order to make improvement in the organization. So personal development plan need to be developed by developing SWOT analysis for oneself. This would be in similar process to measuring current state of health for the organization where we have to measure the organization state of health and accordingly action plan need to be adopted so as to improve the performance (Westcott, 2003). So we can look at the competitors and previous goals set in the organization. A comparison can be done in order to check whether previously decided goals have been completely attained or not. These plans would help in identifying the issues and improving quality by developing improvement plan.
Provide a plan evaluating the importance of communication and record keeping.
Communication channel established by an organization whether formal or informal has impact on the business operations and hospitality industry specifically need a formal channel for the stakeholders to present their duties with high efficiency. Communication process is important for managing resources and organizing entire process. Record keeping can be considered as documentation which would help to maintain proof of customers. Record keeping would help in order to maintain employee record, customer data and visit record etc. This would save time and form evidence for the previous data (Cianfrani & West, 2009).
Provide clear direction to all tiers of staff, on the stages of staff consultation necessary for effective implementation of a quality scheme.
Irrespective of the size of the organization and nature it is important that stakeholders are maintaining proper communication with each other so as to run the business operations in smooth manner. It is important to ask several key questions such as “What type of communication & consultation is necessary in order to share information”, “Is communication and consultation really useful” and “Who should be responsible for communication and consultation” etc. For effective communication it is important to develop an effective channel through which communication will take place (Rose, 2005). Stages of staff consultation can be given as under:
§ Adopting suitable medium for targeting audience
§ Usage of different methods for separate target customers
§ Organizing live chat and conferences
§ Investing time in research work
§ Providing feedback for improvement
Review existing call-flow process and propose modifications that could improve efficiency and service quality.
A proper call flow process would be required in order to achieve organizational goals and manage smooth business operations (Paul, 2008). Some new methods which would help in improving efficiency and service quality can be given as under:
§ Making improvement in process control
§ Facilitating training
§ Boosting employee morale
§ High involvement for staff
§ Wastage reduction
Munro Y (2002). Self-assessment and task performance. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology
Rose, K (2005). Project Quality Management: Why, What and How. Fort Lauderdale, Florida: J. Ross Publishing. p. 41. ISBN 1-932159-48-7.
Paul H. (2008). "Sales Process Engineering: An Emerging Quality Application". Quality Progress: 59–63.
Cianfrani, A.; West, E. (2009). Cracking the Case of ISO 9001:2008 for Service: A Simple Guide to Implementing Quality Management to Service Organizations (2nd ed.). Milwaukee: American Society for Quality. pp. 5–7. ISBN 978-0-87389-762-4.
Westcott, T. (2003), Stepping Up To ISO 9004: 2000 : A Practical Guide For Creating A World-class Organization. Paton Press. p. 17. ISBN 0-9713231-7-8.
Thareja P (2008), "Total Quality Organization Thru’ People, Each one is Capable", FOUNDRY, Vol. XX, No. 4, July/Aug 2008
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Nederpelt, P (2012). Object-oriented Quality and Risk Management (OQRM). A practical and generic method to manage quality and risk. MicroData. ISBN 978-1-291-037-35-7.
Juran, M. and Joseph A., 2010, "Juran's Quality Handbook", ISBN 978-0-07-162973-7