Total quality management can be simply defined as a management method that is used to increase the quality and productivity of organisation. It is a broad approach that works horizontally across the corporation by including all the sectors, workers, extending reversed and forward to consider both supplier and customers. There are several principles of TQM such as executive management, training, customer focus, decision making, company culture, continuous improvement and employee involvement. The present report is based on the total quality management of Iceland food. The report is explaining the benchmarking. It can be considered as a useful tool that make breakthrough changes with in corporation.
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The Iceland food uses the method of benchmarking in managing the quality of their food items. Benchmarking is nothing but a method of measuring qualities of policy, products, programs and schemes used in enterprise. There are several objectives of this process that are described below:
- To determine what type of improvements should be done and where it should be performed.
- It identify how the another organisation or the competitors are achieving their higher performance levels.
- It utilizes these data to develop the level of performance in the corporation.
This is not a simple tool so cannot be quickly performed. It is important to understand the guideline of firm before using the techniques of benchmarking. It is not only a matter of investigating about other companies and creating their documentation of their facilities or processes. While using this technique, the enterprise ought not limit their own scope as it needs this. This is classified into three categories that are explained below:
- Internal benchmarking: It is used when the corporation has already implanted and proven its best activities. They should not share these practices. Additionally, the number of size of the enterprise should be large enough to present its wide range of performance. This method can be important if the comparable firms are not readily available.
- Competitive benchmarking: It is generally used when the corporation wishes to evaluate its place or position within its firm. Also, it is mostly used for the purpose of identifying the target of industrial leadership.
- Strategic benchmarking: It is taken into process when there is a need to identify and analyse the world-class performance or the performance of company in all over the world. It is used when the firm have to go outside from its own enterprise. The six sigma generally uses Hoshin to assure that each and every workers are knowledgeable about the strategies of the corporation (Zhou and Barnes, 2012). Within the Hoshin plan of the enterprise, aims and objectives are setted in relation to benchmarks that is set by world-class organisation. Commonly, these benchmarks are acquired from outside the corporations.
The Iceland food uses the internal benchmarking as this company is already established and proven its plans or schemes. The steps of the benchmarking are written below:
- Understanding the gap between the performance of current processes of the firm: The aims and objectives are established before the manufacturing of product. Some standards are set in order to make quality product (Yang and et. al., 2012). But the work is not carrying on according to the setted perspective. There is a large gap between them. Hence, it should be clearly understand.
- Obtaining support and approval from the executive leadership team: For filling those gaps certain methods should be taken. But before using that it is important to gain support and approval of the leaders. This will help in eliminating roadblocks by providing satisfactory resources and expediting the benchmark-gathering process.
- Write down the scope and objectives of benchmarking: This is needed for any project as this can used latter as per their need. This remind the managers about the goal of the project or benchmarking.
- Documenting the current process: It is also important to record all the current processes in a file or paper because without the proper knowledge of current process it is impossible to implement the benchmark.
- Agree on primary metrics: The primary metrics must be carefully examined. This shows that potential benchmarking partners are already tracking or that can be simply derived from present measuring.
- Metrics should be put in writing: It should be written so that it cannot get out of reach at the time when it is needed.
- Agree on what to benchmark: All the members of corporations should be agreed on the conditions of benchmarking so that in future there will be no conflict regarding their implementation.
- Development a data collection plan: The mangers should design a data collection plan so that information get gathered in such format only (Samiee and Chabowski, 2012). This reduces the time as most of the time gets consumed in surfing net , searching the data from books and journals, etc.
- Identification of research sources and initiate data collection: The resources for research must be identified like practical data, links of website, books, scholars view points, etc. in order to start the collection of data.
- Designing a screening survey to assist with partner selection: A plan regarding conducting survey must be built that is selection of places where the survey has been conducted is decided (Terpstra and Sarathy, 2012). This is going to be selected after taking the view point of partners as they will not create any issues in future.
- Determination of how to contact and screen corporations: The corporations that have to screen have to decided and the ways to contact them should be determined.
- Design a detailed survey in order to gather relevant information: A survey must be conducted but more areas should be covered while surveying. This will help in gathering more relevant information.
- Decide if gathered information is meeting the real objectives: After gathering information from the detailed survey, it is decided that whether the data is fulfilling or meeting the objective or not. If not, then again the survey should be conducted in order to collect real objectives.
- Conducting a site vision: The site vision should also be conducted so that target of business is achieved.
- Applying the learning to the gaps of performance: The learning should be properly applied so that the gaps between the performances can be filled.
- Communicating to the leaders to assure their support: The employees should make proper communication from their leaders in order to ensure their support in implementing any plan for avoiding any future conflict.
- Developing a recommended implementation plan with process owner: The development or implementation of any plan must be done after consulting their owners. This is important because it is the matter of producing quality product.
- Knowing when to update and recalibrate: It is necessary to know the time of update and recalibrate as this done only when consumers demand this. Other wise it is not important (Ringle and et. al, 2012).
The advantages of bench marking are described below:
- The major advantage is that it brought focus to the sectors that should provide special attention. Through this, it sets the base for improvement or development. It forces the corporation to do modification.
- While going through this process, an organisation discovers many new ideas and style of working. It generate a feeling of the strategy that is adopted by its competitors.
- The improvement that are based on the past experiences of the company is not the right measure. The comparison from their competitors are required as the survival has to be fight with these rivals (Paliwoda and Thomas, 2013). This is what particularly benchmarking provides.
- Without an internal or external benchmark for comparison of the performance of company, it can become a challenge to set illustration per year.
- It is a cost as well as time effective way of making a pool of innovation or innovative ideas.
- It minimizes the cost of labour by improving the quality of product.
- It enhances the sales and profits of the corporation.
The disadvantage of benchmarking are listed below:
- It simply aids organisation to spot the areas which is needed to improve. It does not contribute to resolve the issues in hand (Papadopoulos and Heslop, 2014). While benchmarking can be the first of many steps to develop the performance of company.
- It only compares the numbers without taking the impact of macro and micro factors that led the competitor or the leader of organisation success or failure.
Total product concept
The total product concept simply refers to collection of services that is offered by product. As an example, for food item total product can be described as all the benefits achieved by the customers like maintaining good health after their product consumption. The Iceland Food is using this method to manage their total quality management. This concept is also used by consumers when they are examining the different brands of food and distinguishing their benefits and select one that provides them best value for the money paid. Due to this reasons, Iceland Food are using total product concept to make their product different from the products of their competitors and by this way they can create a unique image or position in the market place. The total product concept can be analysed by using following four levels
It can simply defined as aggregation of functional benefits. The basic core involves all the main profits that an organisation has promised to provide. The customers mainly demand the core needs that should satisfy them by providing them basic core features of products as the satisfaction of consumers greatly lies on the functional benefits (Evers and et. al., 2012). If the corporation is not providing the desired cores or they get failed in offering basic core then the product is going to be a failure. This results in a major dissatisfaction in the mind of people as their expectation are not meet.
This involves value added benefits which cannot be directly pay but yet received. This is somewhat extra benefit that are apart from the main benefits of product as per the promises of corporation. The organisation used to make competitive advantages by manufacturing different products in comparison to their competitors. For example, enterprise is offering a water bottle along with some food product. This is seen as an extra benefit or profit that is giving to the consumer.
It is formed by the profit that is achieved as belief of users are associated with using the product or service. This involves all the feelings and notion of customer regarding the control of the product (Czinkota and Ronkainen, 2013). This differs from users to users, so it is somehow difficult to obtain it as the mind of the different consumers have to analyse in order to acquire information or their perspective.
The time can be saved or consumed when the goods or services are purchased. This can be good or bad depending on the operation. The time get consumed when buying and using of product is carried on. This keeps important to the clients whose life style is busy as they have no extra time to spend on shopping only.
Apart from this few researcher have explained this in a different aspects. They have given three layers of total concept product that are described below:
This layer represent the minimum requirements that a consumer want from a product. From these they can compete in the market place as consumers expect them as a standard.
Most of the product are potently based on its unique features, their brand or the style of packaging (Chung and et. al., 2012). Although these properties are necessary for a product, they are the basic differentiators and hence vulnerable to commodification.
The is the powerful difference making attributes belongs to the augmented layer. These are commonly complex form of intangible, auxiliary product benefits that are principally related to ability of company to amend products and hence consumers- with valuable services and support . But it is noticeable that those intangible benefits can really be the deciding factors as they are useful for the customers. This provides them an actual reason to buy that products.
The advantages of total product concept product are following
- The marketers have not to carry out deep research regarding their target audience.
- The money can be saved by marketer for those products which they believe can sell themselves and do not make additional plan for them.
- By this process, marketers can believe that users get attracted towards those products that are highly engineered, high attribute and those that are developed by doing innovations. This attitude gives an idea to them to earn profit and as a result they focus their time as well as money on manufacturing the best product and services as possible rather than concentrating on needs of customers (Berthon and et. al., 2012).
- It helps them in increasing their perceived value.
- Commonly if the company is full confident with their concept of products and services then it stands a good opportunity of being successful within a wide population.
- A large number of people who are concerned with the high quality of the product are not get affected by the processes of advertisement.
- Some of the disadvantage of total product concept are exist that are following:
- Depending on the product to sell itself can generate a felling in the marketer to neglect the advertisement of several important product. This resulting an unawareness situation where the users do not know anything about the qualities or features of product. This reduces the selling rate of companies. So, the corporation ought to use the advertisement process in order to make users aware about their new product and services.
- The prime opportunities of advertisement get missed if deep research about the target customers is not carried on (Akaka and et. al., 2013). Thus, supply of product specifications as per the desires and need of the consumers are not provided. This reduces the importance of that corporation in the eyes of their users.
From the above based report it has been concluded that total quality management is proved to be very beneficial in manufacturing best quality product. It is a holistic approach whereby all the staffs of an organisation participate in improving the processing, products, services and the culture in which they are performing their work. The Iceland Food effectively manages its quality by using benchmarking as a useful tool in order to make breakthrough modification. Total concept product is a method that is taken by corporation in order to maintain total quality.
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