Where does Quality begin?

CarolX

Super Moderator
Super Moderator
#1
Where does it begin?

Hello Group,

An interesting discussion is blooming in another thread…..so let's move it here…

Where does "Quality" begin?

Does it begin in the initial sales function? Maybe in job shops, but not in OEM for consumer goods.

Does it begin in the design function? In the prototyping function? Manufacturing?

What are your thoughts?

CarolX

 
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C

Craig H.

#2
Carol:

I would say that it depends.

If the product or service being sold is a "one off" or made to order, then the sales function starts the quality ball rolling by making sure that all customer requirements are understood.

If the product or service being sold is made ahead of time, then quality starts with the design phase, with input from potentiual customers (ideally).

In other words, quality starts when the requirements for the product or service are determined.

Let's take computers. For Dell, who makes their computers to order, it is critical that their customer service (sales) reps know the product and can ask questions of the customer to "design" a computer as it is being orderer.

Many other computer manufacturers, though, gauge what they think the market wants in a computer, and builds many of them to the same spec. The determination of this spec (which I would guess also includes a price point) is where quality starts. Using this scenario, if I buy one of these computers, but I want a DVD player and one isn't included, a technician or I have to open the box up again and put the device in, which is not very effecient.

Anyhow, that's my opinion, for what its worth.

Craig
 

Mike S.

Happy to be Alive
Trusted Information Resource
#3
CarolX said:
Hello Group,

An interesting discussion is blooming in another thread…..so let's move it here…

Where does "Quality" begin?

I think it ultimately begins with the Head Honcho and how he operates the business. Even before a Salesperson communicates with a customer, or R&D works on the next great thing, or anything else happens in the process of making a customer happy with your product or service, the Head Honcho, through his/her actions, philosophies, policies, and behavior to a great extent determines what kind of "quality" the organization will provide. JMO.
 

Wes Bucey

Quite Involved in Discussions
#4
Mike S. said:
I think it ultimately begins with the Head Honcho and how he operates the business. QUOTE]
I agree with this idea of Mike S.
An excerpt from my ASQ Profile reads:
My entire career has been centered on the concept ‘Quality should be involved in every aspect of a company - including executive planning, administration, marketing, purchasing, design, production, shipping, and service.’

This concept holds true whether the company is a manufacturer or service company (banking, insurance, communications, transportation, construction, janitorial, etc.) The major emphasis is on pleasing or delighting the customer while maintaining or increasing organizational profitability. (In the case of non-profits, does the organization's performance delight both recipients and the contributors? If so, the organization will continue to thrive.)
 
C

Craig H.

#5
Mike S. said:
I think it ultimately begins with the Head Honcho and how he operates the business. Even before a Salesperson communicates with a customer, or R&D works on the next great thing, or anything else happens in the process of making a customer happy with your product or service, the Head Honcho, through his/her actions, philosophies, policies, and behavior to a great extent determines what kind of "quality" the organization will provide. JMO.

OK, Mike, I will agree that your answer is right, too. I took the question as refering to a process, with a beginning and an end (with feedback loops, of course).

If a "quality" process has not been put into place (by Senor Head Honcho), then things won't work very well. Same thing if the atmosphere (environment) is not right.

In other words, if there is no good plan to catch the voice of the customer, or the execution of that plan is not good, then we should not expect good results.

Craig
 

CarolX

Super Moderator
Super Moderator
#6
ok...so let's look at this

Craig,

I love your example of Dell....let me take it a step further...and we will use computers as an example....and you can apply this to a variety of things.

How many of you have experience the "blue screen of death". Now, I know this is not an issue for the computer makers, it is a software issue...but I must ask...why didn't the computer manufactures pound BillyBob and MickeySoft on this issue? Perhaps they did...and it was kept quiet. But this industry proves that "Quality", or customer satisfaction, is not formost on the platter.

I can think of several more examples of this...and I think Mike is right...if the process doesn't start with the Head Honcho, it never will

Just some thoughts from the shortimer!

CarolX
 
Last edited:

Wes Bucey

Quite Involved in Discussions
#7
CarolX said:
Craig,
Just some thoughts from the shortimer!
CarolX
"Shortimer"??!!!
Say it ain't so. Shortimers are old guys, hoping to live long enough (two or three weeks or so) to retire and collect at least one pension check.
 

SteelMaiden

Super Moderator
Super Moderator
#8
Wow, Carol, going out with a bang? Are you asking where does what should be quality start, or where does quality start. You could get different answers for sure, just look at what we have so far, lol.

Quality should begin with the first thought of a new product/service. But that doesn't always happen, does it? witness the "blue screen of death" and many other annoying or just plain rotten "features" we have to put up with in computer/software products. But like Craig and Mike have so very aptly put it, where quality starts depends on what type of product, and its marketing strategies we are talking about.

How about instead of the old philosophical standby "I think, therefore I am" we start a new one: "I envision quality, therefore I produce quality"?
 

CarolX

Super Moderator
Super Moderator
#9
SteelMaiden said:
How about instead of the old philosophical standby "I think, therefore I am" we start a new one: "I envision quality, therefore I produce quality"?
Talk about WOW.....Steel, that is the best!!!!

You better tm that before someone snatches it!!! LOL.

CX
 
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