General Douglas Mac Arthur who. by 1975. at that time. This astonishing and unique achievement in modern history became an eye – opener to the world. The answer to this was painstaking and persevering efforts of the Japanese leaders and workers and the development and growth of the philosophy of small working groups. was the commander of the occupational forces in Japan took up the task of imparting quality awareness among Japanese to help them improve their products and the reliability of manufacturing systems including men. Americans decided to help Japan in improving the quality standards of their products. Seeing this disastrous effect of war. machine and materials. This resulted in the Quality Circle concept being accepted all over the world as a very effective technique to improve the total quality of work life. Thus. Industrialists and politicians from all over the world started visiting Japan to know how they have achieved such magical results in such a short span. . they were topping the world in quality and productivity.GENESIS OF QUALITY CIRCLES After the Second World War Japanese economy was in the doldrums.

Edward Deming. . There are now Quality Circles in most East Asian countries.HISTORY The term quality circles is derived from the concept of PDCA (Plan. banks. Check. W. Act) circles developed by Dr. and QCFI (Quality Circle Forum of India) is promoting such activities. By the mid-1990s thousands of manufacturing plants. Some critics view quality circles as antiunion corporate strategies.. Quality circles have been implemented even in educational sectors in India. The first circles were established at the Nippon Wireless and Telegraph Company but then spread to more than 35 other companies in the first year. and government agencies had implemented quality circles. Quality circles were first established in Japan in 1962. it was recently claimed that there were more than 20 million Quality Circles in China. However this was not successful in the United States. intended to make employees feel as though they have input while denying them real power in the workplace. Do. By 1978 it was claimed that there were more than one million Quality Circles involving some 10 million Japanese workers. Kaoru Ishikawa has been credited with their creation. The movement in Japan was coordinated by the Japanese Union of Scientists and Engineers (JUSE). as it (was not properly understood and) turned out to be a fault-finding exercise although some circles do still exist. hospitals.

but when used in group form (as is the case with quality circles). The focus of the circles is on improving both the quality of the product and the production process.Quality circles are not normally paid a share of the cost benefit of any improvements but usually a proportion of the savings made is spent on improvements to the work environment. which when operated on an individual basis is uneconomic. Quality circles are generally free to select any topic they wish (other than those related to salary and terms and conditions of work. and motivate and enrich the work of employees. information gathering and analysis. They meet at least once a week on company time and are trained by competent persons (usually designated as facilitators) who may be personnel and industrial relations specialists trained in human factors and the basic skills of problem identification. who are trained to identify. as there are other channels through which these issues are usually considered). They bring back the concept of craftsmanship. true quality circles become self-managing. improving product design. basic statistics. the circle remains intact from project to project. where workers or individuals are treated like robots.When matured. having gained the confidence of management. . and solution generation. Typical topics are improving occupational safety and health.Quality circles have the advantage of continuity. They are formal groups. it can be devastatingly powerful and enables the enrichment of the lives of the workers or students and creates harmony and high performance in the workplace. and improvement in the workplace and manufacturing processes. usually under the leadership of their supervisor (but they can elect a team leader). Quality circles are an alternative to the dehumanising concept of the division of labour. analyse and solve work-related problems and present their solutions to management in order to improve the performance of the organization.MEANING A quality circle is a volunteer group composed of workers (or even students).

The Quality Circle philosophy calls for a progressive attitude on the part of the management and their willingness to make adjustments. THE CONCEPT The concept of Quality Circle is primarily based upon recognition of the value of the worker as a human being. the management must be willing to create a congenial environment to encourage them to do so. in their style and culture. Quality Circle is a human resource development technique. . if necessary. Quality Circle is a problem solving technique. It is based upon the human resource management considered as one of the key factors in the improvement of product quality & productivity. experience. concerning their work life. as someone who willingly activises on his job. Quality Circle is a form of participation management. attitude and feelings. intelligence. providing self-motivation and happiness in improving environment without any compulsion or monetary benefits. his wisdom. b. Quality Circle concept has three major attributes: a. If workers are prepared to contribute their ideas. It represents a philosophy of managing people specially those at the grass root level as well as a clearly defined mechanism and methodology for translating this philosophy into practice and a required structure to make it a way of life.PHILOSOPHY Quality Circles is a people – building philosophy. It is bound to succeed where people are respected and are involved in decisions. c. and in environments where peoples’ capabilities are looked upon as assets to solve work-area problems.

c) Development of Team Spirit -Individual Vs Team – "I could not do but we did it" -Eliminate inter departmental conflicts.Their aim to achieve and so also to sustain excellence towards mutual upliftment of employees as well as the organization.QUALITY CIRCLE…ITS COMPOSITION . .They meet together voluntarily on a regular basis for identifying improvements in their respective work areas. -Higher motivational level. -From "I don't care" to "I do care" -Continuous improvement in quality of work life through humanization of work. b) Self Development -Bring out 'Hidden Potential' of people -People get to learn additional skills. OBJECTIVE OF QUALITY CIRCLE:The objectives of Quality Circles are multi-faced.Positive working environment. -Total involvement of people at all levels. a) Change in Attitude. . d) Improved Organizational Culture .It's a small group comprising of 6 to 12 employees doing similar work .

Data and information collection or insufficient data could lead to a situation where decisions or corrective action be implemented effectively.PROCESS OF OPERATION The operation of quality circles involves a set of sequential steps as under:- How to Stitch the Problems through QC:1.. Data and information should be collected for the following purposes:(a) To understand the actual situation and to support or reinforce an option. . The use of various techniques must be supported with accurate information and data. and ( b) To established the relationship between the problem and its causes.

and take training seriously with a receptive attitude. The roles of Steering Committee. Co-0rdinator. They should attend all meetings as far as possible. Circle leader and Circle members are well defined. i. But it is useful to have a basic framework as a model.ORGANISATIONAL STRUCTURE A Quality Circle has an appropriate organizational structure for its effective and efficient performance. ii. Facilitator. They are the lifeblood of quality circles. A Circle leader organizes and conducts Circle activities. iv. plans and directs the program and meets usually once in a month. offer suggestions and ideas. Co-coordinator: He may be a Personnel or Administrative officer who co-ordinates and supervises the work of the facilitators and administers the programme. A steering committee: This is at the top of the structure. Without circle members the porgramme cannot exist. Circle leader: Leaders may be from lowest level workers or Supervisors. v. It is headed by a senior executive and includes representatives from the top management personnel and human resources development people. He coordinates the works of several quality circles through the Circle leaders. Facilitator: He may be a senior supervisory officer. It varies from industry to industry. organization to organization. participate actively in group process. iii. The structure of a Quality Circle consists of the following elements. Circle members: They may be staff workers. It establishes policy. .

• Formally inaugurate the Quality Circle. In the absence of a commitment from the Chief Executive to support the Quality Circle movement totally. Such training comprises of: • • • • Brief orientation programme for top management. on the part of the top and senior management. Training for Circle leaders and members. . it would be inadvisable to seriously attempt the starting of Quality Circles. • Explain the concept to the employees and invite them to volunteer as members of Quality Circles. Later facilitator may provide training to Circle leaders and Circle members. both the workers and management might look at this philosophy with suspicion. Training of facilitators. implementation. • Nominate senior officers as facilitators. • Arrange the necessary facilities for the Quality Circle meeting and its operation. • A meeting should be fixed preferably one hour a week for the Quality Circle to meet. • Arrange training of co-coordinators. techniques and operation. facilitators in basics of Quality Circle approach. Programme for middle level executives. as well as complete conviction and faith in the participative philosophy. Each group should know beforehand the commitments and implications involved as well as the benefit that can be obtained from Quality Circles. TRAINING Appropriate training for different sections of employees needs to be imparted. The launching of Quality Circles involves the following steps: • Expose middle level executives to the concept.LAUNCHING QUALITY CIRCLES The major prerequisite for initiating Quality Circles in any organization is the total understanding of. • Form a steering committee. Without a proper understanding of the real concept of Quality Circles.

6 Prepare plan of action: Prepare plan of action for converting the solution into reality which includes the considerations "who. where.PROCESS OF OPERATION The operation of quality circles involves a set of sequential steps as under: 1 Problem identification: Identify a number of problems. 5 Select the most appropriate solution: Discuss and evaluate the alternative solutions by comparison in terms of investment and return from the investment. why and how" of solving problems. what. This enables to select the most appropriate solution. 3 Problem Analysis: Problem is clarified and analyzed by basic problem solving methods. 2 Problem selection: Decide the priority and select the problem to be taken up first. 8 Implementation of solution: The management evaluates the recommended solution. . 4 Generate alternative solutions: Identify and evaluate causes and generate number of possible alternative solutions. 7 Present solution to management circle members present solution to management fore approval. Then it is tested and if successful. when. implemented on a full scale.

.BASIC PROBLEM SOLVING TECHNIQUES The following techniques are most commonly used to analyze and solve work related problems. inadequate training. job enrichment. 1 Brain storming 2 Pareto Diagrams 3 Cause & Effect Analysis 4 Data Collection 5 Data Analysis 6 Ishikawa (Fish bone diagram) The tools used for data analysis are: 1 Tables 2 Bar Charts 3 Histograms 4 Circle graphs 5 Line graphs 6 Scatter grams 7 Control Charts The Quality Circles also are expected to develop internal leadership. resistance by middle management. resentment by non participants. lack of clear objectives and failure to get solutions implemented. and encourage a strong sense of teamwork in an organization. greater upward flow of information. including higher quality. improved productivity. and greater teamwork. broader improved worker attitudes. A variety of benefits have been attributed to Quality Circles. reinforce worker morale and motivation. Problem quality circles often suffer from unrealistic expectations for fast results. lock of management commitment and support.

The results of a short period of one year are found to be very encouraging so far and many of these Circles have already come up with solutions to the various work related problems as evidenced from the last two state level conventions held at Mumbai and Aurangabad respectively. 48 Quality Circles have been formed in Pune Region wherein. The sub-ordinate officers and staff working in the field and who are well-acquainted with the day-to –day problems in their work areas are the best judges to decide upon the line of action. 8 problems have been solved. contexts changed. In a span of about a year 17 Quality Circles have been formed in Mumbai Region wherein 22 problems have been solved so far. This may be due to the differences in the industrial context in the two countries. sellers market. India had a reasonably protected. of Maharashtra on 18-11-1997. APPLICABILITY IN GOVERNMENT ORGANISATIONS The Public Works Department of Government of Maharashtra is responsible for the construction and maintenance of about 2.D. Aurangabad Region has formed 21 Quality Circles and solved 7 problems. Nagpur Regions have formed 47 Quality Circles and have found out solution to 57 problems.D.00 lakhs km. with consequent lethargy towards efforts to improve quality and productivity. after its introduction in Japan.BENEFITS AND LIMITATIONS OF QUALITY CIRCLES It took more than two decades for the quality control concept to get acceptance in India. However.W. The concept of Quality Circle was launched in the Public Works Department of Govt. The ultimate customer of the Department is the common man and it is not generally easy to satisfy the ultimate needs of this user to the fullest extent merely by taking decision at the top management level. The top management in Maharashtra P. realized this need of the time and introduced the concept of Quality Circle as employee participation method in the organization. with the policy of liberalization of economy and privatization of infrastructure development. The climatic and geographical features also vary from place to place in the state. so far. The road net work caters for national level traffic to the rural area traffic. The concept now needs to be looked upon as a necessity.W. has formed 9 Quality Circles and solutions to 3 problems have been found out. Japan needed it for its survival in a competitive market. of road net work in the state and a large number of Government-owned buildings spread all over the state. Nashik Region of the P. The .

Some of the problems and the solutions thereof are explained briefly below: 1 Delay in issue of observation memos: The Public Works Department (PWD) of Maharashtra is divided into six regions each headed by a Chief Engineer. more staff of the Department has come forward to form Quality Circles. Vigilance & Quality Circle who with the help of two Executive Engineers and about 6 Deputy Engineers carries out inspection of the ongoing projects. 10 Improvement in maintenance of Govt. The samples of the construction material being used on project are collected and independently tested in the Regional Testing Laboratories to ascertain the level of acceptance. very often the observation memos are issued after much delay defeating the very purpose of the observation memo. of Maharashtra are as follows: 1 Eliminating delay in issuing observation memos after inspection of site. 9 Stream-lining reservation system of Govt. 2 Preventing accidents on highways.W. 7 Upkeeping of service records of employees. Each regional Chief Engineer is assisted by a Superintending Engineer. Hospital at Solapur. 8 Maintaining Govt. 5 Removal of encroachment from Govt. Some of the problems solved by the Quality Circles in P. Taking inspirations from these conventions. rest houses. These presentations also provide concrete evidence fulfilling the expected benefits of the Quality Circle. 3 Reducing electricity bill in office. land.D. However. emphasizing the fact that Quality Circles have come to stay in the Department. 6 Speeding up pot-hole filling on roads during monsoon. This problem was . offices clean. It is contemplated that the Execution Engineer in charge of the project ensures immediate compliance of the remarks raised in the observation memo and carries out corrective measures in the ongoing project as well as preventive measures for the future works.presentations by the various Quality Circles at these conventions bear testimony to the fact that the concept of Quality Circle has been received with much enthusiasm at the grass root level. 4 Avoiding duplication of work. The findings of the inspections are communicated to the field engineers in the form of ‘observation memo’.

They made presentation to their steering committee for obtaining sanction to other solutions involving more funds. b) Freedom to modify their work habits. Machine. The Circle members collected the data from the respective police stations and identified the important causes of accidents by using Pareto Analysis. The members used various tools and methodology. The Circle members found out solutions to the problem such as closing of central verge at all locations except junction. . They segregated the causes under Man. By solving this problem. frequent lane marking. ii) Preventing accidents on highways: It was observed that the accident rate on Sion-Panvel Highway passing through New Mumbai had gone up sharply.identified by the ‘OMKAR’ Quality Circle formed in the office of Superintending Engineer. Vigilance & Quality Control Circle. The data collection of accidents for a period three months after implementation of solutions near Shirvane and Turbhe revealed that the cause of accident had been eliminated and no more accidents occurred at those locations had been eliminated and no more accidents occurred at those locations again. c) Opportunity to use their brain for development of the Department. a) A systematic style of education that helped them grows. self improvement recognition and creativity in work. The formation of Quality Circle also benefited employees by providing. it became possible to improve the quality of work in the field which ultimately brightened the image of the Department. Providing lay-byes for buses etc. installation of Caution boards. Material & Method. identified the various root causes that led to this problem and finally solved the problem with requisite fool proofing. and d) Opportunity to work as a team. e) The employees were also motivated to improve work culture. This way the Circle members ensured the effectiveness of the solution implemented. Navi Mumbai.

and structure of organization so that they can better adapt to new technologies. attitudes. HRM INTERVENTIONS This intervention focuses on the individuals within the organization. system improvement." using behavioural science knowledge as well as organizational reflection. and the dizzying rate of change itself. and self-analysis. It consists of: Structural Design Downsizing Reengineering Employee Involvement Work Design 2. TECHNO-STRUCTURAL INTERVENTION Bring about the changes in the task. values.  Goal Setting  Performance Appraisal  Reward Systems  Career Planning & Development  Coaching and Counseling Activities  Managing Workforce Diversity  Employee Wellness 3. planning. TEAM BUILDING INTERVENTION      . TYPES OF INTERVENTIONS IN QUALITY CIRCLES 1. a complex educational strategy intended to change the beliefs. structure & technological processes.QC AND OD INTERVENTIONS Organization development (OD) is a planned. it is a particular kind of change process designed to bring about a particular kind of end result. OD can involve interventions in the organization's "processes. Warren Bennis has referred to OD as a response to change. marketing and challenges. OD is neither "anything done to better an organization" nor is it "the training function of the organization". organization-wide effort to increase an organization's effectiveness and viability.

Their energies are directed toward problem solving. staying together is progress. and working together is success.Henry Ford Team building is an effort in which a team studies its own process of working together and acts to create a climate that encourages and values the contributions of team members. 4. Sound team building recognizes that it is not possible to fully separate one's performance from those of others.” . the goals of which are the improvement and increased effectiveness of various teams within the organization. HUMAN PROCESS INTERVENTIONS This intervention includes the following: • Guiding Individuals Coaching Counseling Delegating Leading Morale (Boosting) Mentoring Motivating • Group-Based Conflict Management Dialoguing Group Facilitation Group Learning Self-Directed Work Teams Team Building Virtual Teams . “Coming together is a beginning.This intervention is probably the most important single group of interventions in OD. and maximizing the use of all members' resources to achieve the team's purpose. task effectiveness.

5. ORGANIZATIONAL MIRROR INTERVENTIONS  A technique designed to work units feedback on how other elements of organization view them.  Designed to improve relations between the teams. .

firms. Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) etc. These activities can be organised in several different ways. hospitals. the teams progress beyond solving problems and move towards the phase of making continual process improvements. Quality Circles are relevant for factories.W. . there has been no limit to this development process. By organising the workforce into Quality Circle type teams. In those countries where this has been allowed to happen. Commitment and long-term effort are required if the Circle is to be effective. in turn the staff increases their respect for their managers and this continues progressively until a full state of self management is reached. Hence. value analysis teams. At some stage in this process. 5S Housekeeping activities. there follows a transformation in job design. not only can the Quality Circles tackle and solve work related problems.CONCLUSION Quality Circles are not limited to manufacturing firms only.D. action centred groups. Quality Circles can work very well in the correct environment. Each plays a different but important part in participative activities. The P. schools. project groups. True `selfcontrol' can only be introduced through Quality Circle type activities. universities. Managers begin to increase their trust of their staff. this concept demonstrates how people can effectively become involved in the success of an organisation through the development of selfcontrol in `small group' type activities. research institutes. They are applicable for variety of organizations where there is scope for group based solution of work related problems. of Maharashtra has set an example for the Government organizations marching on the path of Quality Improvement. and can include task force operations. value engineering. government offices etc. banks.

pdf .nih.ieindia. • WEBLIOGRAPHY• BIBLIOGRAPHY Organizational Development by French &

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