Whatever happened to Total Quality Management (TQM)?

By Eddie R. Williams ·
Recently, and over the past several months, I have had conversations or received emails regarding quality management and enterprise wide project and process improvement. With recalls in some industries and failing projects has come this reaffirmation to quality as a priority and activities that contribute to good quality and innovations. The discussions made me wonder about activities that contribute to on-going quality and process improvement throughout an organization or company. It caused me to have a number of questions including the following:

Whatever happened to Total Quality Management (TQM) which was a focus on a company's internal requirements to improve the quality of its operations, products and services, with a customer focus? The emphasis was that quality is the responsibility of everyone, and it provided a feedback process and mechanism for employees and staff to submit suggestions for improvement. Is it just a buzz word during theses difficult economic times?

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From what I have seen

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to Whatever happened to Tota ...

It was scrapped because it cost too much.

The reality however was it was more hype than reality in any instances that i saw.


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It was very big in manufacturing at one point

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Whatever happened to Tota ...

but there you have some concrete meausrements.
Tonnes sold, items made, a real specification, mechanical tolerance, chemistry, other non ambiguous parameters.

Course manfacturing dies a death and so TQM with it.
A lot of it was common sense anyway, a pile of Gartner types made a lucrative fad out of it for a bit.
In It though
What actually consitutes a quality service of software product though?
The assessment tends to be extremely subjective and situational, so attempting to drive your process by some metric, will go wildly wrong, or simply bounce about., averaging out ti no effect.

One of my favourites is reported bugs. If there's a work around, people do that, the bug isn't in their face, so they donlt report it anymore, therefore the producer gives it little priority.....

Another one I saw is a firm that increased uptime of their system by not taking it down for maintenance and housekeeping....

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