This is the text of an article published by Peter Griffin
The official definition is:-
This highlights that the service must satisfy a given need, and that is the need of the customer. Quality is providing a product or service that is "Fit for the Purpose". In many areas the popular choice of purchase is not the cheapest but it is chosen because its quality and reliability are perceived by the customer as being the best value for money. An alternative definition could be:-
Quality could therefore include:-
If the Customer's needs are not identified they can only be achieved by accident, and any amount of trial and error causes delay and additional cost.
If the Customer's needs are to be satisfied, they must be documented to clarify the extent of the contract and, if appropriate, agreed with the Customer. Failure to document them means that they are passed by word of mouth and subject to individual interpretation of the recipient.
Planning involves positive decisions on such items as definition of the correct equipment, identifying the type and quantity of tools, defining the correct grade of manpower for each activity, identifying any special accommodation or facilities required, etc.
The equipment and materials must be fit for the intended purpose if the Customer is to be satisfied and the company is to avoid rectification and warranty costs. The choice of suppliers is an important factor in avoiding these costs.
Many people and organisations are involved in fulfilling a contract, and each one requires communication of clear instructions. Production personnel cannot be expected to achieve the correct results (FIRST TIME) if they do not possess clear instructions. Anything less causes unproductive rectification costs.
Poor delivery is a major cause of Customer dissatisfaction. in addition to the company's own control of programme, the choice of supplier must be taken with a sound knowledge of their historical delivery performance.
Quality of production not only requires good instructions and equipment, it demands staff capable of performing a professional service. Training and experience is vital to ensure faultless production.
This is the company operating as a team! If one person is unsure of their objectives, others come to their aid in order to avoid lost time due to shortage of correct information, tools, materials, equipment, etc.
If things go wrong they should be regarded as an opportunity to learn for the future, and represent the best method for identifying improvements in the company's performance.
Quality Assurance is designed to aid reduction of avoidable costs and satisfy given needs, however this must be achieved in such a way as to maximise profits.
Peter Griffin is managing consultant of P Griffin & Associates (PGA); one of the leading quality management consultancies operating in Europe and the USA.
P Griffin & Associates have assisted 260 companies (ranging from 3 employees to multi-national corporations) to achieve improvements in quality and ISO9000 Registration.
While the majority of companies fail to achieve ISO9000 certification at the first attempt, 98% of PGA's quality assurance clients have achieved first-time success.
Please pass your comments/ suggestions/ requests to
Quality Network Home
P Griffin & Associates Index
Last Updated November 19, 1995