Engagement of the Workforce and Relationship Management ZAA 107 - Week 4

You can find the Microsoft Workbook for this unit here. Or continue to view the material online.

Engagement of the Workforce and Quality

The third Quality Management Principle (QMP) of the ISO 9001 standard is Engagement of People. Which people is it talking about? The document ‘ISO Quality Management Principles’ states the rationale behind this:

‘To manage an organization effectively and efficiently, it is important to involve all people at all levels and to respect them as individuals. Recognition, empowerment and enhancement of competence facilitate the engagement of people in achieving the organization’s quality objectives.’

This week, we will discover why the engagement of people in your organisation is important to quality management, and what actions you can take to ensure that everyone in the organisation is fully engaged with quality.

Quality is Everyone's Responsibility

Many organisations have a position called ‘Quality Manager’, or similar. They are responsible for ensuring that the organisation is doing everything possible to meet quality standards, including third party standards such as ISO9001. However, you might recall Edward W. Deming’s 14 points, a number of which were related to people in the organisation. One of the key things is that everyone is responsible for quality, not just the Quality Manager. It only takes one person to be sloppy in what they do for the system to break down.

Now consider your place of work, home or study. What is your role? Whatever it is, answer the following statements by ticking yes or no – be as honest as you can!

Now read Article 1 for some insights: ’20 Ways to Improve Your Performance at Work’

Video 1 - Quality Belongs to Everyone

Now have a look at the following video, which highlights how Fedex manages its quality to customers. It is entitled ‘Quality Belongs to Everyone’:

Quality belongs to everyone | 4:45 mins

After you’ve watched the video, make some of your own notes on what you can learn from Fedex.

Quality Circles

Many organisations understand that quality does not just belong to the boss, but to everyone involved in doing something. In earlier times, if someone noticed a problem or fault on the production line, they would just keep on working, as it was not considered their responsibility, but management’s. This view was changed in the Japanese car industry after World War II. In order to become more productive, and not to build in quality problems, the car industry realised that bad quality (products and processes) needed to be identified at the source. In other words, at the production line where people were working. This led to the development of Quality Circles, where a small team of people were responsible for identifying quality issues and problems on a regular basis. You should now turn to Reading 2, which will provide you an overview of what a Quality Circle is:

‘Quality Circles (QCs): Definition, Objectives and Other Details’

The following diagram provides a great overview of what Quality Circles are all about:

Source: http://archives.dailynews.lk/2010/09/29/bus21.asp

Video 2 - Japan: Quality Control and Quality Control Circles

Now have a look at this short video, that gives you an idea of how Quality Circles operate in Honda, then write some notes about the main points:

Japan: Quality Control and QC circle | 15:12 mins

Cross Functional Teams

Organisations such as the car industry still utilise quality circles; however, there are other ways to organise teams. Committees, Focus Groups, Self-Managed Work Teams are just some other ways to do this. One team-based methodology has become quite common in organisations, which is the Cross-Functional Team. The idea behind this is that whatever you are working on, affects not just one work area, but interacts with other work areas. Health and Safety, Product Design and Quality Management are some examples of this. The cross-functional team obtains input from a number of affected areas and stakeholders throughout the organisation, as we often need to work out how an activity impacts functions both upstream and downstream. As for Quality Circles, they would meet on a regular basis to discuss issues and problems and find solutions to them.

As with any team, building and maintaining relationships is vitally important, otherwise communication breaks down and the required outcomes will not be achieved.

Video 3 - 4 Tips for Effective Cross-Functional Collaboration

Now watch the following video to obtain some tips on how to manage cross-functional teams effectively, then write the 4 tips in the table, and how this will assist the organisation with its quality management:

Internal Customers | 8:42 mins

Video 4: ISO9001:2015 Essentials part 3

Continuing on from our look at ISO9001 and quality, now have a look at the following video:

2015 Essentials Part 3 |

After you’ve watched the video, make some of your own notes on the key principles covered in the video.


Created with images by lucianalopezrec - "ladder snail stairs"

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