Quality Management


What is quality?

Refers to the standard of the goods produced

Whether something is quality depends on whether it is:

  • meeting customer needs and customer expectation
  • a good design
  • durable
  • reliable
  • functions well
  • consistent
  • value for money
    • if something is good value for money the customer will be satisfied that the price reflects the quality
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Importance of Quality

  • Fewer returns = lower costs
  • increases customer loyalty
  • demand from retailers and distributors will increase
  • strong brand reputation concerning quality 
  • better value for money = the product will be bought even when prices change
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  • a matter of personal opinion 
  • always evolving due to improvement in:
    • technology
    • materials
    • manufacturing techniques
    • competitors
  • controlling quality benefits the business but can be costly.
    • the benefits need to outweigh the costs in the long term
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Measuring Quality

Quality is measured in two ways: tangible and intangible 


  • appearance
  • reliability
  • durability
  • cost of ownership e.g. repair/maintenance


  • image/brand
  • reputation
  • exclusiveness
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Cost of Quality

Poor Quality = Additional Costs

  • replacement costs and refunds
  • loss of customers
  • material wastage 

Poor Quality includes:

  • product delivered late 
  • doesn't perform as promised
  • poor instruction making the product difficult to use
  • product fails 
  • break downs
  • general wear & tear
  • unresponsive customer service
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Quality Management: Total Quality Management

ensures that an organisation, product or service is consistent

Total Quality Management

  • aiming to develop quality culture throughout the business = zero defects 
  • all staff members involved
  • right approach 1st time 
  • concentrates on the systems and staff
  • continuous improvement
  • can't have quality control without first having quality management and quality assurance
  • staff are encouraged to put forward ideas, this is known as continuous improvement. Commitment to quality assurance rather than quality control
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Quality Management: Quality Assurance

Quality Assurance

  • production process
  • all workers involved in checking quality
  • makes sure the product reaches customer standards
  • prevent faulty products
  • faulty products identified early
    • reduces waste 
      • saves the company money
  • improves worker motivation as they gain recognition 
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Quality Management: Quality Control

Quality Control

  • product orientated
  • prevents faulty products reaching customers 
  • products checked by inspectors to meet the company's standards
  • products not meeting standards will be discarded or sent for rework
    • rejected products = expensive = materials wasted = very costly
  • products inspected at the start and end of the production process 
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Quality Circles

  • small groups of workers who come together to discuss and solve problems 
  • employees who are doing the job often have a better idea on how to improve processes
  • 4 key stages:
    • planning
    • identify what the business needs to do
    • analysis
    • implement quality improvement
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Benefits of Improving Quality

  • competitiveness 
  • improved image and reputation
  • higher selling price and reputation 
    • high selling price = high profit
    • high demand = low costs
  • fewer complaints 
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  • the objective of benchmarking is to identify internal opportunities for improvement
  • process of measuring the performance of a company's products, services or processes
  • benchmarking can be split into 5 key stages:
    • planning 
    • analysis
    • integration
    • action
    • maturity 
  • best practice in the industry is to copy your competitors and then add extra value or a USP to your product
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