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Process is not a Part Time Pass Time


Process is not a part time pass time. Rather it is way to survive and sustain.

 Great Quality organizations like GE, Toyota and other Quality conscious companies realized that the basic DNA of any company should be carrying the Quality through its veins, bones and tissues.

We have great role models in Automobiles and Manufacturing domains that have proven record in imbibing Quality as its focus and rising to the top positions in the industries.

Why there is lesser importance being given in Small and Medium segmented IT companies about Quality. There are many reasons like present priorities keeping companies busy, short term profits are the focus, not worried about long term sustenance and development. In fact process focus and Quality practices are equally important in short term planning as much the long term. If survival is the key aspect during this troubled economic state, producing and delivering excellent product and services are key in retaining existing customers. Since beyond a point it is difficult to reduce the price, improve upon the delivery periods for orders, the best way to make differentiation is to show significant improvements in Quality attributes like less defects, zero reworks, high productivity and ensuring overall delight to the customer.

Many of the initiatives start and die before they even meet with pilot deployment in the Quality field. This requires that the management needs to consider few options for Quality improvement methodologies deployment and choose the best suited to them. No point in adapting to the buzz word concepts and inappropriate methods just because their competitors’ work in some ways. In fact the best would be to arrive at a hybrid model by choosing from Quality models like CMMi, ISO, TQM, Lean and Six Sigma.

If we take example of Metrics Program in an IT organization, first we need to define what we want to measure. Analyze whether what we want to measure improves the overall company’s goals.  If Zero defect product leading to TQM organization is a goal for example, then start with measuring training programs on TQM, its objectives and goals, how the training content on TQM is created and mapped to organization needs, whether audience are part of training material preparation and do we have a good trainer and what are effective techniques that can be used in training etc. Training about TQM leads to awareness better among the employees.

Employees should become knowledgeable as to how they can contribute to a quality product or a defective one and what are all the possible impacts of their work performance along the supply chain from immediate customers to end users.

Having understood their contribution towards company objectives in producing zero defect process employees will be motivated by the feel that they are responsible for the company’s brand image. It creates a conducive atmosphere where quality breeds and becomes part of the work and they dont see Quality as a  part time activity. The work output should be traced back to its inputs at any stage to find out root causes of the output and not for the purpose of penalizing the employees.

If product Quality is checked only during reviews and audits then Quality becomes part time pass time. If Quality is practiced at all levels in all processes then Quality will catapult the organizations into ever growing TQM organization

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