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Role of HRM managers in implementing TQM values in various organiyations. Total quality management (Methods), Human resource management (Methods). Basic understanding of HRM role in implementing TQM values in various organizations.
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Implementing total quality management: the role of human resource management.
Introduction Globalization in the business theater is driving companies toward a new view of quality as a necessary tool to compete successfully in worldwide markets. A direct outcome of this new emphasis is the philosophy of total quality management (TQM). In essence, TQM is a company-wide perspective that strives for customer satisfaction by seeking zero defects in products and services. Making quality improvements was once thought to be the sole responsibility of specialists (quality engineers, product designers, and process engineers). Today, developing quality across the entire firm can be an important function of the human resource management (HRM) department. A failure on HRM's part to recognize this opportunity and act on it may result in the loss of TQM implementation responsibilities to other departments with less expertise in training and development. The ultimate consequence of this loss is an ineffective piecemealing of the TQM strategy. Thus, HRM should act as the pivotal change agent necessary for the successful implementation of TQM. HRM can act as senior management's tool in implementing TQM in two fundamental ways. First, by modeling the TQM philosophy and principles within its departmental operations, the HR department can serve as a beachhead for the TQM process throughout the company. Second, the HR department, with senior management's support, can take the TQM process company-wide by developing and delivering the
A sense of ownership and responsibility for goal achievement and problems solving. selection. strategy implementation must involve a focused effort on the part of every employee within the organization. TQM calls for a change in the corporate culture. and reward system development to institutionalize a quality-first orientation. An appreciation of the capabilities of HRM to model and institutionalize TQM begins with an understanding of the TQM philosophy. TQM. This means that HRM has two specific tasks: "Serving our customers." This emphasis on customer oriented service means that the HR . Business plans. HRM as a Role Model for TQM HRM can jumpstart the TQM process by becoming a role model. and management actions require continual rethinking in order to develop a culture that reinforces the TQM perspective. TQM requires that management. Self-motivation and self-control by all employees. deep-seated value within each function area as well. Instead of using traditional bureaucratic rule enforcement. where the new work climate has the following characteristics: y y y y y An open. is a participative system empowering all employees to take responsibility for improving quality within the organization.long-term training and development necessary for the major organizational culture shift required by TQM. appraisal. and eventually every member of the organization. strategies. and. line. It cannot be applied successfully on a piecemeal basis. problem-solving atmosphere. The HR department also has major strengths in terms of recruitment. and making a significant contribution to running the business. which has been adopted by leading industrial companies. workers. The TQM philosophy is a long-term endeavor that links people and processes in a system that alters the corporate culture to become one where quality is the core aspect of business strategy. The end result of TQM is the efficient and effective use of all organizational processes in providing consistent quality at a competitive price. In cultivating the TQM philosophy. Participatory design making. Trust among all employees (staff. commit to the need for continual improvement in the way work is accomplished. The TQM approach involves more than simply meeting traditional rejection rate standards. The challenge is to develop a robust culture where the idea of quality improvement is not only widely understood across departments. but becomes a fundamental. The TQM Philosophy Implementing a total quality management system has become the preferred approach for improving quality and productivity in organizations. managers).
In other words. Leaders in the quality movement (Deming. HRM should include suggestions from its customers in setting objective performance standards and measures. In their efforts to achieve total quality management. and continually monitoring and improving the level of customer satisfaction are all fundamental to the TQM philosophy. Focus on problem prevention. The new perspective here is that all employees exist to serve their customer groups. which indirectly provides ultimate satisfaction to external customers. Clarifying what products and services will provide maximum customer satisfaction. to monitor senior management's levels of satisfaction as the TQM process unfolds. both formal and face-toface. Juran. Train employees in ways to improve quality.their principal internal customer -. applying these TQM issues would translate into identifying the expectations of senior management -. These themes can be summarized as five basic principles: y y y y y Focus on customers' needs. The human resources department has internal customers to satisfy. measuring satisfaction. Crosby. Make continuous improvements: seek to meet customers' requirements on time. But customer satisfaction can only be achieved after first defining the customer groups. Apply the team approach to problem solving. some internal and some external to the firm. .regarding TQM. the first time. and spearheading the TQM program's implementation on the basis of those expectations. every time. The current emphasis on quality as a competitive strategy has produced many views regarding the actions necessary to achieve it. To institute total quality management as a philosophy within an organization.department must see other departments in the firm as their customer groups for whom making continuing improvements in service becomes a way of life. all employees must come to realize that satisfying customers is essential to the long-run well-being of the firm and their jobs. there are other essential TQM customer issues. For the HR department. Applying TQM Principles in HRM. No longer is the customer-driven focus exclusive to the marketing department. HRM can demonstrate commitment to TQM principles by soliciting feedback from its internal customer groups on current HR services. and. In addition to identifying customer groups. there are a number of specific TQM principles that the HR department can model. not correction. TQM in practice for HRM might also mean periodic surveys. Feigenbaum)(2)(8)(1)(4) have proposed similar approaches which share certain themes.
The HR department is in a position to help institutionalize team approaches to TQM by designing appraisal and reward systems that focus on team performance. Underlying these cooperative efforts are two crucial ideas. In the face of such radical operational makeovers. can be reinforced by applying basic principles of motivation. it is a tool for monitoring and identifying quality problems. The other idea is that it is more costly to acquire new customers than to keep the customers you already have. Employees are encouraged to work together across organizational boundaries. Based on this "customer first" orientation. Using teams and empowering employees to solve qualityrelated issues using such tools as statistical process control. monitoring is performed by periodically inspecting small samples of the product. a determined implementation effort is vital to prevent TQM from becoming simply platitudinal and the team approach just another management fad. and the effective use of goal setting for group efforts. One is that the initial contact with the customer is critical and influences all future association with that customer. organizational members are constantly seeking to improve products or services. For many companies. In this context "process" refers to service delivery as well as manufacturing. and organizations should make certain that its employees are empowered to make decisions that will ensure a high level of customer satisfaction. especially in any trouble areas that come to light. This can be achieved by promoting an environment of self-initiative and by not creating a quagmire of standard operating procedures and company policies. In modeling these aspects of the TQM process.(7) Exemplifying TQM here would mean that the HR department would need to train itself. SPC alone will not ensure quality improvement.The TQM approach entails identifying the wants and needs of customer groups and then propelling the entire organization toward fulfilling these needs. Defect prevention results from continuously monitoring and improving the process. The effective use of quality improvement teams. Senior management must take the lead in overt support of TQM. and the TQM system as a whole. The Focus of SPC. the recognition of team accomplishments as opposed to those of individuals. Senior Management and TQM . especially in a business environment that is diverse and constantly changing. the HR department would need to identify human resource concerns of other departments and undertake to continually improve its performance. focusing on being customer-driven toward other departments Quality improvement programs typically involve the directed efforts of quality improvement (QI) teams. rather. To ensure that output meets quality specifications. (SPC) represent fundamental changes in how many businesses operate. A customer's concerns must be taken seriously.(7) Flexibility is the key. In particular. the philosophy of TQM represents a major culture shift away from a traditional production-driven atmosphere. is defect prevention as opposed to defect correction. are important in driving the TQM system. also known as statistical quality control (SQC). as most are today.
TQM controls processes that are central to achieving the dramatic cultural changes often required for TQM to succeed. . according to agreed upon checkpoints. Providing the agreed resources (people. 2. Assigning authority and establish deadlines to put resources into motion. etc.(9) The policy for implementation and maintenance of the TQM system should be set forth in writing and incorporated into the organization's mission and goals statements. it is essential that top management set organizational priorities and goals of the organization. and resources must be continued throughout every level in the organization. Monitoring progress in achieving goals.(5) Beyond modeling TQM. and * Providing leadership as demonstrated by top management's explicit expectations and behavior in everyday activities. who. Measuring improvement and reward both the achievement of goals and the ways they are achieved. with senior management's support. In addition. to accomplish the goals. training. the HR department.(5) In summary. The intent is to have every employee's work support the organizational priorities and to have each person know what to do. and the creation and maintenance of reward systems. The process of setting goals and allocating authority. must convey their commitment to all organizational members.To be successful. As previously mentioned. not to apportion blame. Initiating agreement on goals and measures that cascade throughout the organization. machines. top management's responsibilities in the TQM implementation process include: 1. can play a leading role in implementing a quality strategy across the firm. money. HR managers are responsible for recruiting highquality employees. The Company-Wide Role of HRM in Instituting a TQM Culture Human resource management can plan a vital role in implementing and maintaining a total quality management process. in measurable terms. and. the continual training and development of those employees. Thus.). a TQM system must be wholeheartedly accepted by top management. 5. and employees must be rewarded for attaining specified goals. progress must be monitored regularly. The key elements of senior management's role in implementing TQM are: * Institutionalizing the TQM structure as established by stated goals and formal policies and procedures. 3. responsibility. but to aim for improvement. 4. in turn.
Thus. the HR department should be primarily responsible for relaying the TQM culture to members of the organization in employee orientation training. The other focuses on determining existing employee perceptions and attitudes toward quality as a necessary goal. HR departments are well-positioned to take the leading role in providing such programs consistent with the TQM philosophy. This involvement begins the process of helping each department own the TQM program which will follow. Equally important. HR managers have an important opportunity to communicate a history of their organization's TQM program and its champions. where improvements in quality can have the most impact on company performance. This expertise can be particularly important for a TQM program. HR personnel can ensure that employees know they are the organization's number one priority in implementing TQM. With their background. HRM can help establish a departmental view of service throughout the entire organization. One involves identifying troublesome areas in current operations. a preparatory step is to administer an employee survey targeting two primary concerns. Here again. HRM has many opportunities to establish communication channels between top management and other members of the organization. Holding a major liaison role between top management and employees. HRM is responsible for providing training and development. HRM can tell stories of employees who are currently inspiring the TQM philosophy. but is instead a helpful collaborator assisting each department in making their own quality improvements. Using these channels. since getting off to a good start means having information about current performance. Obtaining cooperation from other departments in the use of surveys largely depends on their perception of HRM's role in the survey process. This can provide the foundation for all employees to be trained to consider their peers in other departments as internal customers. Part of HRM's functional expertise is its ability to monitor and survey employee attitudes. As corporate historian. HRM has the opportunity to emphasize this new outlook by example. Building trust through an open exchange of ideas can help allay fears regarding the work-role changes that TQM requires. By exemplifying a customer-first orientation.Tailoring the TQM cultural development program to the firm's circumstances is essential in overcoming resistance to change and moving beyond simple compliance toward a total commitment to TQM. using a corss-functional TQM survey development team provides an early opportunity for HRM to exemplify the TQM team philosophy and dispel territorial fears about how survey results will be used. so that the implementation program itself can be fine-tuned for effectiveness. . In general. Emphasizing HRM's collaborator role can be accomplished in the participative spirit of the TQM philosophy by involving other departments in the development of the survey instrument itself. Thus. TQM and Training and Development. The challenge is to establish that HRM is not usurping departmental prerogatives.
Beyond communicating the TQM philosophy. Training and development that does not fit within the realm of these questions will more than likely encounter heavy resistance. . Basically HR professionals must decide the following: What knowledge and skills must be taught? How? What performance (behaviors) will be recognized. However. training and development does fall within the realm of these questions probably will be accepted more readily. and how will we reward them? HRM has faced these questions before and can best confront them in the TQM process. the specific training and development needs for making TQM a practical reality must be assessed.
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