Posts Tagged Quality Assurance

Quality Assurance

Lets say you have bought a nice watch. And lets just say it is virtually everlasting and indestructible. Would you agree that it sounds like an item of high quality? What if the same watch is extremely inaccurate or bruises your wrist severely every time you try it on? It serves the idea and the purpose, but what is our perception of its quality?

 

In research sociology today there is a continuous debate on the superiority of qualitative versus quantitative methods. Furthermore, in business the group of quality professionals cannot agree on the concept of quality; which according to the director of Advanced Training and the driving force behind the Business Improvement Network, Jim Wade considered as the major barrier to effective communication between the profession and everybody else, particularly managers.

 

Quality Assurance

In manufacturing, scientific management and benchmarking techniques are relatively familiar when measuring the quality (performance quality). In servicing business, however it is less harmonious - as the very nature of agreeing on any sort of standards may result in missing opportunities (for e.g. barnstorming exercise and creative block).

 

For Small and Medium Enterprises (SME), tertiary sector in particular there is a number of options available to manage the overall quality of the organisation. Quality assurance is one of the three main components of the total quality management. To promote the quality achievement and improve performance throughout the business typically there are departments, specific jobs and of course tools.

 

Pqasso is one of the leaders in the field for quality assurance and total quality management. The great thing about systems like Pqasso is that it can also be used as a decision support tool in planning, organisation or virtually any area of your organisation. The way quality assurance systems work are pretty simple too and require little to no training and they do add value and portray a positive image to the company and its stakeholders.

 

To sink in the message: quality does require some additional resources like budgeting and time investment, however it is a great attribute any business can have. And if the business is not achieving what is written on your mission statement, maybe the quality assurance process is the right place to look for the little wholes.

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Do You Have an Achilles Heel?

Shoes? Anatomy? No-no, just a little effort to capture the essence of the interesting article I happen to read recently. In brief, one of the memorable examples of so called Achilles Heel, would be a Polaroid camera. At some stage it was notably popular and financially successful for the company, however the inability to compete with photography going digital placed Polaroid on the poorly lit back stage.

The fatal weakness might take place in absolutely any functional area, or even aspect of the business. For instance, the fall of the Webvan, in U.S. the company collapsed due to over-expansion and “unjustified” expenditure. As Kent German pointed out “A core lesson from the dot-com boom is that even if you have a good idea, it’s best not to grow too fast too soon”.

And that leads us to the article. Don Sull summarised few truly relevant myths:

Myth 1: The downturn caused our problems.
Myth 2: Companies fail quickly.
Myth 3: No one saw it coming.
Myth 4: Things will return to normal after the downturn.
Myth 5: It couldn’t happen to us.

To aid the battle with the “representative” myths it may be useful to check on your quality assurance and decision support system and procedures (which sounds interesting enough to be my next article) or even establish one if there is none present.

In conclusion, well, there is no conclusion. I have a plane to catch and this article is on my to do list, so I am cheating! What I do want to say is, stay smart and sensible, listen and listen to the right people and finally take action. Happy holidays everyone - may your clementines be plenty and Christmas tree needles half as painful!

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