Quality flow is important and that the product

Quality can
be defined as the fully satisfaction of a customer that was provided, which is related
to negotiated requirements, through services and products (Xerox, R). According
to (ISO 9001,2015), quality is a set of inherent characteristics that fulfils
requirements. Also, it is the continuously improving of the behavior and
attitudes as well as the processes and services. However, in a variety of
definitions about quality, it can be said that the broader meaning of it is to meet
requirements and satisfying the customer. Nevertheless, quality as it applies
to the Bed Industry Case study can be distinguished in many ways such as the
conformance. Crosby (1979) states that quality is a conformance to requirements
and the measurement of it is the cost of quality. In addition, a business can
be vaccinated against non-conformance to quality requirements and as Crosby
believed, the higher quality always raises profits and reduces cost. In a
specific way, conformance means how the product meets the specifications
determined by the manufacturer. For example, the delivery time took 5 days
instead of 2 or 3 working days which they showed. This shows an inferior of
quality. On the other hand, Flood (1993) supported that measurement must be
taken continually to determine conformance and focuses on how information flow
is important and that the product should be looked after at every stage in the
supply chain, whilst Crosby’s definition focused on customer satisfaction.
Moreover, another dimension of quality is performance, which shows the
reliability of the product or services. According to Feigenbaum (1956), significant
quality improvement can be improved in an industry through the participation of
everyone in the workforce and therefore have a good understanding of what
management is trying to do. Feigenbaum gives attention at the financial
approach to the management of quality and focuses on the cost of quality. For
example, if the sales have gone up, it shows how popular an item is and as a
result, the improvement of the reputation of the company is shown. In fact, the
bigger the price is the better the quality is. Also, Feigenbaum states that
quality is, “best for the customer use and selling price”, and at this phrase
can be said that it focuses at price. Following this statement, in a supply
organization, there must be an effective system for integrating the quality
development and improvement efforts of the various participants at the most
economical levels in order to gain the full customer satisfaction. However,
Juran (1988) defined quality as “fitness for use” which can be explained as an
increase at conformance and decrease at cost of quality resulting to quality
improvement. Lastly, comfort is
probably the main characteristic that any person would look for in a bed
mattress. It depends according to customer needs and criteria in order to have
a bed absolutely great to anyone.

 

1.      What measures could be used to assess Quality
in the Bed Industry Case study based on your definition(s)? (25%)

Bed industry
could use a variety of measures to assess Quality based on the definitions in
Question1. Some measures that could be used to assess Quality by Bed industry
are customer satisfaction and customer feedback which are very important,
performance throughout the supply chain such as KPI’s, the thickness of the
mattress and the percentage of spring and foam of it. Also, the quality of the
mattress is another measure that might use to assess quality and a major
measure is the delivery time. Following the definitions that were illustrated
and developed to define quality, as it applies to the bed industry, their
measures will be analyzed. However, customer satisfaction is an abstract
concept and involves such factors as the quality of the product, the quality of
the service provided, the atmosphere of the location where the product or
service is purchased, and the price of the product or service (Grimsley, 2015).
 It is the “evaluation of the
perceived discrepancy between prior expectations and the actual performance of
the product” (Tse and Wilton, 1988, Oliver 1999). The purpose of it is to keep customer happy both in day-to-day
interactions and from a more global, long-term perspective (Hunt, 1977, Johnson
and Fornell, 1991).  Furthermore, an
industry gets the appropriate feedback through customer satisfaction and as a
result of using this feedback to manage and improve their business and their
quality as well. According to (Gustafsson, Johnson and Roos,2005), customer satisfaction is actually
how customers evaluate the ongoing performance. Moreover, performance
throughout supply chain is very important in order to gain competitive
advantage and to survive in the workplace of today (Pertusa-Ortega et al., 2010).
However, the demand for being able to measure supply chain performance has
increased and one solution to this is the Key Performance Indicators (KPI’S).
KPI’s illustrates the gap between planning and execution in the supply chain, and
are metrics set up to observe and check the progress or the quality of the
value, cost, waste and service (Chan & Qi, 2003). For instance, a company
focused on sales might prefer to measure inventory against customer service
and, a company focused on transportation would probably want to measure it
on-time deliveries. In general, KPIs are quantifiable metrics which reflect the
performance of an organization in achieving its goals and objectives. Some
major key performance indicators are inventory, total delivery cost and supply
and demand variability. Furthermore, delivery time, or on-time delivery in
supply chain world, is a crucial factor that leads to the success of the
business, which is something desired by everyone. The metrics which are used to
measure delivery time are the number of units and line items on the order and
the date of delivery. For example, if the customer orders 10 different items on
the same order, the supplier have to deliver all 10 on-time to get 100% on-time
delivery at the expected date of delivery. In addition, the thickness and the
quality of the mattress and the percentage of spring and foam in the mattress
are also significant measures to assess quality in the bed industry.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2.      What quality tools and/or techniques
could be used by the Bed Industry Case study to manage / improve Quality? (50%)

There are a variety of quality tools and
techniques that could be used by the Bed Industry to manage and improve
quality. Three major tools and techniques of quality are the Quality Function
Deployment, Six Sigma’s and five S’s. First of all, Quality Function Deployment
(QFD), which is a technique of quality management, is an effective method which
is used to improve quality into the upstream process and also into development
of a new product (Ferguson and Dale, 2007). According to the authors, QFD is a
systematic procedure for translating the ‘Voice of the Customer’ into technical
requirements and operational terms and also provides the mechanism to target
selected areas where improvement would enhance competitive advantage. Also, it
translates the preferences of the customer into specific product characteristics
and identify those characteristics of a product or service which gives the full
satisfaction to a customer according to his needs and requirements. In order to
receive information on issues, such as what is required to satisfy their needs,
expectations, thinking and ideas, discussion with the customer is needed because
their opinions are essential. However, there are some different methods to
understand the real needs of the customer such as market surveys and marketing
test. Furthermore, the organizing framework for the QFD process is a planning
tool called the “house of quality”. It is consisted of design engineers and
marketers who first establish critical customer attributes for the product and who
are working all together as a team. The house of quality also consists of seven
steps which are Customer needs and benefits step, relationships, corporate
expectations, to complete the relationship step, competitive benchmarking and
target settings and the final step is to fill in the technical correlations
matrix (Zinkgraf, 2012). Next, Six Sigma quality technique is a process based
on a data driven with an approach to improvement and problem solving (Wiele et
al., 2007). Six Sigma is built on the QFD technique. Indeed, this quality
technique was created by Motorola company in order to improve productivity,
performance and quality and the specific goal of it is the value creation
through quality improvement. According to (Bhote and Bhote 1991), the process
would involve training of employees in tools and techniques as well as a problem
solving protocol in order to eliminate the defects. As a result, the company
will improve customer satisfaction and operating effectiveness. Moreover, the
success of this process will depend on four major factors. The first factor is
the high level of commitment and involvement of management and also the high
level of training of managers. The second factor is the adaptability of the
organization to a degree of sophistication which also must be ripe for the
change. The next factor is about reducing defects and the fourth factor is to
be concentrated on those elements of a business which will result in customer
perceiving that they would rather deal with them than with one of its
competitors. Therefore, Six Sigma can be an effective method for the
organization building on a range of improvement elements which can be
considered the focus on the customer or customer satisfaction, specific
training, process focus, control and improvement and data driven management. In
essence, Six Sigma is a well-structured improvement with financial benefits which
can nevertheless be considered as a risky approach because its focus is short
term. Lastly, a quality tool that could be used by the Bed industry to manage
and improve quality is the 5S’s tool which creates a working environment with
harmony among the employees and is very comfortable. The 5s are Japanese words
seiri, seiton, seiso, seikatsu and shitsuke where they respectively mean organization,
neatness, cleaning, standardization and discipline. Therefore, 1s is about
keeping only essential items and disposal of unnecessary things, 2s focuses on
the need for the workplace in order, 3s indicates the need to keep the
workplace clean as well as neat, 4s allows for control and consistency and 5s
refers to maintaining standards and keeping the facility in safe and efficient
order day after day (Michalska and Szewieczek 2007). Implementing the 5S rules
should begin from trainings of productive workers in the range of the 5S’s
elements and advantages from their usage (Ho, 1996). It is important that all
participants of trainings will understand the need of using the 5S rules on their
own workplace and will agree on the changes. Indeed, the advantages of
implementing the 5s rules are process improvement by costs’ reduction, stock
decreasing, safety improvement, improvement at maintenance and decreasing of
mistakes quantity resulting from (Urbaniak, 2004). Nevertheless, selecting
quality tools and techniques are some factors which the Bed Industry should
keep in mind. The application of any tool or technique alone, without any plan
and strategy, will only provide short term benefits. Also, all tools or
techniques play a role at some point in the improvement process and no one is
more important than the other. A common saying used to emphasize this is, “If
you only have a hammer, it is surprising how many problems look like nails”.
After all, to lead to the success of its implementation, a key factor is the motivation
for the use of any particular tool or technique (Bamford and Greatbanks,2005).