W. Edwards Deming firstly introduced TQM (Total Quality Management) in 1950s in Japan. It is a modern quality management based on the conventional quality management. Along with the development of science and technology as well as the requirement of management, it has become a strong systematic science. It is a philosophy that involves everyone in an organization with a frequent effort improving quality and achieving customer satisfaction (Boyne and George.2002).
Feigenbaum, the famous experts from the United States, gave the definition of TQM in the early 1960s as follows: to be able to make market research, design, manufacturing and after-sales service in the most economical level, and fully meeting customer requirements (Chiaburu and Dan, 2005). Moreover, the quality development, quality maintenance and the quality improvement of various departments in the enterprise constitute an effective integrated system. Specifically, TQM implies main ideas that are, strong customer focus, continuous improvement, and employee authorisation.
From the perspective of present and future, the customer has become roles that should never be neglected. “Customer-centered” management model is gradually being attached great importance by enterprises (Chiaburu and Dan, 2005). TQM focus on customer value and the leading idea is “customer satisfaction and recognition is the key to gain market create value for long-term. Therefore, TQM must be taking Customer-centered throughout the enterprise management process, that is in all aspects, from market research to product design, sample, production, inspection, warehousing, sales and after-sales service, it is important to establish the “customer priority” attitude firmly, not only to produce affordable products, but also good services for customers, and ultimately make customer satisfaction assured.
Continuous improvement is a philosophy of never-ending improvement. TQM is a commitment that could never to be satisfied, the quality that can always be improved, “There is always a better choice beyond the best.” Under the guidance of this concept, enterprises improve the product, service quality and reliability continuously, all of which ensure to access a competitive advantage.
As for employee empowerment, TQM enables workers on production line to join in the improvement process and uses the form of teams extensively to identify and solve problems (Grote, 2000). Employees are expected to seek out, identify, and correct quality problems.
Besides, some other aspects are also important, such as ongoing employee training in the use of quality tools, design products to meet customer expectations; process management; and extend quality concepts to a company’s suppliers.
Improvement of TQM cause what kind of improvements of relationship between customers and front line staff?
Total quality management means that everyone should be responsible for quality, which not only refers to the quality of the product, but also refers to the quality of services. Meanwhile, the quality of service is not limited to customer service, but also refers to the service for company employees, such as co-ordination among the colleagues, the convergence between departments etc. Nevertheless, everything in the company, should give customers and consumers a good impression (Longnecker and Nykodym, 2000). Therefore, if the concept of TQM is deep into the heart of the staff and implemented effectively, it will guide the staff to give good customer services, so that make customer satisfaction. More importantly, it can improve the relationship between employees and customers.
Take the following case as an example: if an employee fails to be motivated by the leader, he may not take active contribution in the meeting to identify problems and to find solutions in the process. What is worse is that he may work passively; his team spirit will be reduced, which will have a negative impact on the whole company. Conversely, if the manager can fully mobilize the enthusiasm of each employee, the department’s team spirit will certainly be fully exposed, and the overall objective of the company will be achieved to meet the customer’s wants, needs and desires. Therefore, it can be effective to strengthen the skills and quality consciousness of workers (Rainey and Pandey, 2000). The following steps are creating appropriately incentive, training the sense of ownership and efficiency in all staffs, and strengthening the sense of “Teamwork”. All these will make the internal staff work with enthusiasm, thus the target customers will get first-class product and high-standard service quality.
How to improve?
To improve the TQM, it is necessary to know what customers want, more importantly, understand customers’ psychology, all of which requires doing market research ahead of time. Then the production of qualified products and quality services should be provided for customers to meet their needs and desires (Janssen and Yperen, 2004). A Significant feature of Total quality management is the preventive, that is to change the “after checking” to strengthening the idea of “advance prevention”, and make management results as the management factor. So it is necessary to make clear factors, which affect product quality during the production process. They are Man, Machine, Material, and Method (Rainey and Bozeman, 2000).
In the four main factors, the man is the most vital one. Whether the equipment operation, maintenance, or the acceptance and check of materials, and even the compliance and improvement of method, that all depend on workers’ intelligence and enthusiasm, so they play a most important role during the whole process. Machine (Equipment) management includes the early detection of equipment daily maintenance and appropriate measures and certain standards of maintenance and regular adjustment. Material managements are to enhance the acceptance, improve the storage method, and avoid the damage and the metamorphism of material and so on. As for the method, the best operation method should be standardized, written, and introduced to the workers (Hui and Lam, 2000).
All in all, it is necessary to apply the PDCA cycle during the process. That is carrying out all the plans with the quality as the centre basing on full participation. The PDCA cycle is also called Deming Wheel or Continuous Improvement Spiral that is Plan-Do-Check-Action cycle showed in the following graph.
In other words, “plan” is to analyse the situation, identify problems to find out the major factors of the reasons and at last develop an action plan. “Do” is to carry out the plan. “Check” is to Check the implementation results of the plan, and “A” is to sum up the successful experience and develop an appropriate standards, at last ,take the unresolved or emerging issues into the next PDCA cycleÂ¼Ë†Briggs and Charlotte, 2003Â¼â€°.
Specifically, it is appropriate to seek for what the customer wants at first, and then design a product or service that meets or exceeds customer wants, further more, design processes that facilitate doing the job right the first time, and keep track of results at last to extend these concepts to suppliers.
Hyatt is a globally recognized hospitality company with more than fifty-year history. The Hyatt regency sanctuary cove is a five-star resort hotel and this hotel has a traditional Queensland homestead style. It is also in a beautiful position amid lush, tropical gardens. This resort hotel features a colonial design that is an elegant reminder of former times, offering a unique blend of Australian hospitality and sophistication.
There are different types of rooms offered in Hyatt regency sanctuary cove hotel. King room, twin room, lagoon view king, lagoon view twin, club king, club twin, Queenslander suit, homestead suit, federation suite and manor suit. There are 14 dedicated meeting rooms, conference and banquet facilities accommodating groups of 10 to 500. Each room has different types of amenities such as balcony, individual heat control, separate sitting area and so on. This hotel provides special offers to government, AAA or CAA members, senior citizens and corporate or group members. There are variety of services and facilities such as 24-hour in-room dining and resort security, shuttle bus service, Camp Hyatt that offers parents free time to enjoy gym and playing golf while their kids are engaging exciting activities, laundry and valet service and 24-hour medical centre. And also wineries and gourmet trails, national park and waterfalls, theme parks surround this hotel and they are easy to reach from the hotel.
TQM implementation process
Total quality management is applicable to all kinds of businesses. On the other hand, it is more difficult for hospitality industries to implement TQM because products are intangible, services are produced and consumed at the same time and customers’ values are different (Vrtodusic, 2000). As Hyatt hotel is well known on the tourist market and the guests are recognising it as a good four-star hotel, it is important to have continuous improvement to keep the business healthy. In hotel industries, people participant in rendering particular services cope directly with other people every day and for that reason they are required to be extremely sensitive to exceed the personal needs, wants and desires (Lakhe and Mohanty, 1995). One of the best ways to achieve quality improvement is obtained by focusing on its customers’ concerns. By surveying its customers and owners in related to safe operating procedures, attitude, degree of communication, service delivery system and performance, the hotel can improve its TQM effectively. Hyatt must identify and choose processes that are to be of interest to the committee and also likely to give reasonable results. Its reservation processes, from the time guests make bookings until they arrive at their room can be an example. In order to improve and identify this process, first, meetings need to be held with the managers of departments who are directly involved in the process. Second, interviews need to be done with its staff, and lastly observation of the processes is needed (Saunders and Graham 1992). Through these steps, measurement points can be identified such as timeliness, integrity, predictability and satisfaction (See Appendix 1). Hyatt hotel also need to provide quality-training programme. Employees, however, need to be trained from upper management to the in-house trainers and facilitators to emphasise the importance of training. For the management training, it needs to cover basic topics such as importance of customer satisfaction, background, overview and benefit of TQM. More importantly, managers need to understand steps in implementing TQM, principles of team building and employee empowerment. Furthermore, non-supervisory employees need to be informed clearly about Hyatt’s vision, mission and guiding principles (Witt and Muhlemann, 1994). Empowerment is the most popular concept in modern management and organisation applications, which means giving workers responsibilities for solving customers’ complains. It makes employees more productive and esteemed (Wilkinson, 1998). In addition, it is important for employees to take a positive action to find out what went wrong. For instance, handling guests’ complains on the spot rather than asking their manager and fix it later will reduce the cost. There are some possible improvements when quality improvement teams are established. It will provide increased employee value, informed and skilled employees, employee suggestions and participation, and personal development. Feedback is also an important part of TQM. If Hyatt hotel can reduce the time between identifying guests’ needs and satisfying these needs, it might increase customer retention. Even though it is significant to increase occupancy rate for the hotel, focusing on quality goals will develop quality of service and products and make more profits. Suppliers also need to improve their quality in terms of the time between ordering and delivery. If they do not improve and have willingness to do that, it is not recommended to deal with them.
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