Motorolas Tools And Techniques Of Tqm Information Technology Essay

This research paper is made about Motorola Inc. America, and describes how Motorola started its operation like an ordinary firm and reached to the zenith of excellence by developing and implementing new quality control techniques. Six Sigma (6σ) is the core technique of continuous improvement program of TQM which was first developed and implemented by Motorola inc. Further more, it tells about how and why firm ought to adopt the Six Sigma (6σ) techniques for their success. The data integrated in this research is exclusively presented by the help of various informative sources. Other than focusing the Six Sigma (6σ) program the research also tells about why and how the organizations continuously strive to capture largest market share in tight completive environment by using different tools of total quality management. Overall the research embeds the importance of total quality management, its significance to gain a competitive edge and remarkable breakthroughs in the history of organizations.

Motorola is a well known American multinational telecommunication company based in Schaumburg, Illinois. It is the manufacturer of wireless telephone handsets, and also designs and sells wireless network infrastructure equipment such as cellular transmission base stations and signal amplifiers. They have achieved a high level of success throughout the world by being innovative and promoting creativity among their employees. This company’s prosperity is dependent upon developing cutting edge technology and in new product design. To accomplish these goals, Motorola actively encourages employees to generate creative ideas, challenge conventional thinking, and look towards the future. Motorola’s home and broadcast network products include set-top boxes, digital video recorders, and network equipment used to enable video broadcasting, computer telephony, and high-definition television.

Motorola uses TQM techniques to be successful and improve employee creativity within the organization. Some of these methods include employee empowerment and risk taking, training and education techniques, participative management, and team collaboration. The innovation of TQM technique is one of the fundamental stand of Motorola Inc.

Motorola’s business and government customers consist mainly of wireless voice and broadband systems used to build private networks and public safety communications systems like Astro and Dimetra. Motorola’s handset division is now focusing on smartphones using Google’s open-source Android mobile operating system.

Motorola Vision Statement:

“Our history is rich. Our future is dynamic. We are Motorola and the spirit of invention is what drives us.”

Motorola Mission Statement:

“We are a global communications leader powered by a passion to invent and an unceasing commitment to advance the way the world connects. Our communication solutions allow people, businesses and governments to be more connected and more mobile.”

Motorola Slogan:

“Hello Moto”

Motorola has a successfully working TQM process. Motorola’s fundamental objective is Total Customer Satisfaction. They have won the Baldrige award and are corporate leaders in TQM.


Motorola started in Chicago, Illinois as Galvin Manufacturing Corporation’ in 1928 with its first product being a battery eliminator. The name Motorola was adopted in 1930, and the word has been used as a trademark since the 1930s. Founders Paul Galvin and Joseph Galvin came up with the name Motorola when the company started manufacturing car radios in 1930; the name is a combination of “motor” and the suffix “ola”.

Many of Motorola’s Products have been radio-related, starting with a battery eliminator for radios, through the first walkie-talkie in the world in 1940, defense electronics, cellular infrastructure equipment, and mobile phone manufacturing. In 1943, Motorola went public and in 1947, the name changed to its present name. The present logo was introduced in 1955. In 1952, Motorola opened its first international subsidiary in Toronto, Canada to produce radios and televisions. In 1953, Motorola established the Motorola Foundation to support leading universities in the United States.

In 1955, years after Motorola started its research and development laboratory in Phoenix, Arizona to research new solid-state technology, Motorola introduced the world’s first commercial high-power germanium-based transistor.

Beginning in 1958 with Explorer 1, Motorola provided radio equipment for most NASA space-flights for decades including during the 1969 moon landing. In 1960, Motorola introduced the world’s first “large-screen” (19-inch), transistorized, cordless portable television. In 1963, Motorola, which had very successfully begun making televisions in 1947 introduced the world’s first truly rectangular color TV picture tube which quickly became the industry standard.

In 1974, Motorola sold its television business to the Japan-based parent company of Panasonic.

In 1976, Motorola moved to its present headquarters in Schaumburg.

In September 1983, the firm made history when the FCC approved the DynaTAC 8000X telephone, the world’s first-only commercial cellular device. By 1998, cell phones accounted for two-thirds of Motorola’s gross revenue. The company was also strong in semiconductor technology, including integrated circuits used in computers. Motorola has been the main supplier for the microprocessors used in Atari ST, Commodore Amiga, Color Computer, and Apple Macintosh personal computers. The PowerPC family was developed with IBM and in a partnership with Apple (known as the AIM alliance). Motorola also has a diverse line of communication products, including satellite systems, digital cable boxes and modems.

In 1986, Motorola invented the Six Sigma (6σ) quality improvement process. This became a global standard, in 1990. In June 2000, Motorola and Cisco supplied the world’s first commercial GPRS cellular network. In 2002 Motorola introduced the world’s first wireless cable modem gateway which combined a high-speed cable modem router with an Ethernet switch and wireless home gateway. In 2003, Motorola introduced the world’s first handset to combine a Linux operating system and Java technology with “full PDA functionality”.

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Motorola invented the Six Sigma (6σ) quality improvement process in 1986 and in 1988, Motorola Corp. became one of the first companies to receive the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. The award strives to identify those excellent firms that are worthy role models for other businesses. One of Motorola’s innovations that attracted a great deal of attention was its Six Sigma (6σ) program.

Motorola Saved $22 Billion from 1986 to 2009, reflecting hundreds of individual successes in all Motorola business areas including:

Sales and Marketing

Product design


Customer service

Transactional processes

Supply chain management.

To quantitatively measure the performances Six Sigma (6σ) uses statistical analysis. That process can involve manufacturing, business practices, products, or service. To be defined as Six Sigma (6σ) means that the process does not produce more than 3.4 defects per million opportunities (DPMO) – which translates to 99.9997% efficiency. A Six Sigma (6σ) defect is considered anything that can cause customer dissatisfaction, such as being outside of customer specifications. A Six Sigma (6σ) opportunity is the total number of chances for a defect to occur.

Six Sigma (6σ) Concept

The Six Sigma (6σ) concept was developed by Motorola in 1986 with the stated goal of improving manufacturing processes and reducing product defects and variation.

Building on earlier quality improvement methods, Six Sigma (6σ) assumes the following:

Ongoing efforts to achieve stable, predictable process results are essential for business success

Manufacturing and business processes have characteristics that can be measured, analyzed, improved, and controlled

Sustained quality improvement requires commitment from the entire organization

Six Sigma (6σ) Implementation

In order to achieve Six Sigma (6σ) performance, the causes of manufacturing and business process defects and variation must be identified and eliminated. Two Six Sigma (6σ) sub-methodologies were developed for this purpose: DMAIC (Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, Control) and DMADV (Define, Measure, Analyze, Design, Verify).

DMAIC is used to improve existing processes that are below specification; DMADV is used to develop new processes or products at Six Sigma (6σ) levels.

Borrowing martial arts terminology, a key innovation of Six Sigma (6σ) was the creation of a professional quality management hierarchy. This structure works to involve all levels of the organization in the success of Six Sigma (6σ) projects:

Executive Leadership includes the CEO and other top management

Champions, drawn from upper management, are responsible for Six Sigma (6σ) implementation across the organization

Master Black Belts, identified by champions or by executive leadership, function as in-house coaches, mentors, and trainers; 100% of their time is devoted to Six Sigma (6σ) to ensure business and leadership alignment

Black Belts focus on the application of Six Sigma (6σ) methodology to specific projects; 100% of their time is devoted to Six Sigma (6σ)

Green Belts are involved with Six Sigma (6σ) implementation along with other job responsibilities

Lean Sigma is a current industry trend in which a process is made lean through efficiency improvements before Six Sigma (6σ) is applied to reduce variation.

Six Sigma (6σ) Calculation

In order to calculate Six Sigma (6σ), the engineers at Motorola set up a scale to evaluate the quality of a process based on these defect calculations. At the top of the scale is Six Sigma (6σ), which equates to 3.4 DPMO, or 99.9997% defect-free. In other words, if you have a process running at Six Sigma (6σ), you’ve almost eliminated all defects — it’s nearly perfect. Of course, most processes don’t run at Six Sigma (6σ). They run at Five Sigma, Four Sigma or worse. Here’s the full scale to get an appreciation of the numbers involved. The calculation of a sigma level is based on the number of defects per million opportunities (DPMO). The formula to calculate DPMO is:


If, for example, there are 38 defects, 10,000 units and one defect opportunity/unit, the results would be:

DPMO 3,800

Defects (%) 0.38

Yield (%) 99.62

Process sigma 4.17

Motorola and other software have devices several soft wares that easily calculate sigma of a process or activity.

The table given below maps the Sigma and %accuracy.


Defects per Million Opportunities (DPMO)

% Accuracy

One Sigma



Two Sigma



Three Sigma



Four Sigma



Five Sigma



Six Sigma (6σ)



Seven Sigma



LSL lower sigma level

USL: upper sigma level

Six Sigma (6σ) Benefits

Achieving measurable and quantifiable financial goals (cost reduction/profit increase) with Six Sigma (6σ) projects sets this methodology apart from other quality improvement tactics. Financial benefits of potential process improvement projects are used to help prioritize the projects; these benefits are then reassessed during the analyze phase of both DMAIC and DMADV and verified in the control phase of DMAIC and the verify phase of DMADV. Closely linking Six Sigma (6σ) projects to a company’s bottom line gives everyone in the organization a stake in the success of these projects. It also helps identify projects that involve critical-to-quality aspects of the process and will provide substantial process improvement. Scores of organizations continue to improve their performance by taking advantage of their Six Sigma (6σ) process. Since Motorola implemented its Six Sigma (6σ) process in 1987, their results have included:

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• Sales growth of greater than 300 percent.

• Employee productivity growth of more than 12.3 percent per year.

• Elimination of more than 99.7 percent of in-process defects.

• Reduction by 84 percent of costs associated with poor quality.

• Savings of $11 billion in manufacturing costs.

By the late 1990s, approximately two-thirds of Fortune 500 companies had started Six Sigma (6σ) projects; as of 2009, Motorola had reported more than $19 billion in savings as a result of Six Sigma (6σ).

In addition to significant financial gain, Six Sigma (6σ) provides organizations with the methodology and structure to make decisions based on verifiable data and statistical analysis and thereby to achieve measurable quality improvements in manufacturing and business processes. Six Sigma (6σ) projects are truly a win-win situation as product quality is greatly improved while product defects and variation are reduced, employees are meaningfully involved in the outcome of the projects, company profitability is measurably increased, and customer loyalty and satisfaction are significantly enhanced.


Motorola’s PDCA is a problem solving process and consist of a Plan to identify and analyze the problem, Do, to develop and implement solutions, Check to evaluate the results, and Act to standardize the solution, capitalizing on opportunities.

Deming’s Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) Cycle

Plan – select and analyze the problem

Do – implement the solution

Check – check the results of the change

Act – act to standardize the solution for the long-term


The Pareto chart is a very useful tool which Motorola uses to separate the important from the trivia. The chart, first promoted by Dr. Joseph Juran, is named after Italian economist/sociologist Vilfredo Pareto (1848-1923). He had the insight to recognize that in the real world a minority of causes lead to the majority of problems. This is known as the Pareto principle. Pick a category, and the Pareto principle will usually hold. For example, Motorola has found that all the kinds of problems that can be named are only about 20% of them who produce 80% of the product defects; 80% of the cost associated with the defects will be assignable to only about 20% of the total number of defect types occurring. By Examining the elements of this cost it is revealed that once again 80% of the total defect costs spring from only about 20% of the cost elements. A Pareto chart became very handful for Motorola by the discovery of these ratios and has helped in the segmentation of the customers on the bases of imperative problems and opportunities.


Motorola Cause-And-Effect team typically uses a cause-and-effect diagram to identify and isolate causes of a problem. The technique was developed by the late Dr. Kaoru Ishikawa, a noted Japanese quality expert, so sometimes the diagram is called an Ishikawa diagram.

Motorola has developed the software of cause-and-effect diagram which tells about how internal or external event affects the organizational processes. It is the only tool that is not based on statistics. This chart is simply a means of visualizing how the various factors associated with a process affect the processes’ output.


Histograms are used by most of the companies including Motorola to chart frequency of occurrence. How often does something happen? Any discussion of histograms must begin with an understanding of the two kinds of data commonly associated with processes: attributes and variables data. An attribute is something that the output product of the process either has or does not have. An electronic assembly either had wiring errors or it did not. For Example, in a process used in making Motorola electrical resistors would use the scale of electrical resistance in ohms; another process might use a weight scale, and so on. Variables data are something that results from measurement.


The history of Motorola reflects that it has strived to ensure continuous improvement and lasting success by following fundamental principles that emphasize change. One principle is known as leadership of renewal, which stresses the need for change to stay ahead of the advancing technology market. Motorola has tried to create a corporate structure that can anticipate and manage change in order to gain a competitive advantage. A key aspect of accomplishing this is to teach managers and lower level employees to take a proactive approach toward change (Winston).

Another standard they adhere to is called renewal of leadership. At Motorola it is important that employees have freedom to take risks and utilize creativity. Therefore, Motorola looks for managers who can inspire and empower subordinates rather than inhibit their creative freedom through rigid authority or control. Their renewal of leadership system uses an intricate 360-degree feedback program for all divisions of the company. This allows every worker to get opinions about their strengths and areas needing improvement from peers, managers, subordinates, and customers. Motorola also has a structure that encourages the rotation of managers from all levels of the organization. This is done to reenergize managers and ensure that problems will continually be looked at from a fresh perspective (Winston).

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An essential concept the Motorola Corporation advocates to their employees is to think the unthinkable. The notion here is to think differently and find innovative solutions to any type of problem encountered. To encourage this initiative, Motorola passes power on to their employees to make critical decisions and tells them it is okay to make mistakes. “Open to new ideas, devoted to nurturing, and encouraging those who question the oldest assumptions and propose the boldest changes–these are enduring characteristics of Motorola” (High Performance Working Research Project).

Motorola also encourages their employees to exhibit desired performance through rewards and positive reinforcement. “Counter-intuitive thinking–the thought process of standing against the crowd and challenging conventional wisdom–is prized, encouraged, and rewarded. In fact, it is the basis on which Motorola’s success is founded” (Winston). Motorola is very good about giving their employees a high level of autonomy and encouraging independent thinking. This results in a greater sense of confidence and creative freedom while on the job.

In order for workers to consistently apply the values that Motorola preaches, they must be properly motivated. Thus, Motorola offers many extrinsic rewards to employees that can make them feel appreciated and motivate them to be successful. The company provides extensive training each year for all employees, tuition reimbursement for attending school, sports and recreation facilities, and promotions based on achievement rather than tenure (Inside Motorola: Benefits). These incentives, along with competitive salaries, can help workers feel a greater sense of commitment and purpose for their jobs. It is also common for people to be more productive and creative when they are valued and feel comfortable in their surroundings. The preceding examples illustrate why so many employees view Motorola as a first class organization and are passionate about their careers.


Benchmarking is often applied to such business practices as payroll, payables, customer billing, receivables, information technology, purchasing, and inventory management. Despite the various definitions of benchmarking, the goal is always the same: to identify best practices. The benchmarking allowed Motorola to climb the learning curve quickly by benefiting from the experience of other companies. According to Greg Hackett, founder and president of The Hackett Group,

“…you get to steal the learning curve of others….” [i] 

Ultimately, benchmarking results in more efficient processes which, in turn, can generate substantial cost savings. According to Mark Krueger, managing director of AnswerThink Consulting, cost reductions can range from 15% to 45%.

The basic premise behind benchmarking is that to deliver quality, you need to compare your business against the “best in class” business and then make changes to your operation so that quality is enhanced.

Benchmarking is the process of determining who is the very best, who sets the standard, and what that standard is.


Just-in-Time is method of fast response to customers used my Motorola. The Just-in-time (JIT) manufacturing is, to a large extent, based upon a system of total quality management, as well as strong emphasis upon training and involvement of workers in all phases of manufacturing in Motorola’s workshops. JIT is particularly conducive for some areas of manufacturing and viable for other manufacturing control systems too. JIT utilizes a full involvement and method of manufacturing, emphasizing such aspects as order to delivery, eliminating waste, enforcing problem-solving and continuous improvement, total quality management, parallel processing, purchasing, and others. The essential philosophy behind JIT manufacturing has largely to do with competitive effectiveness.


Pioneered by Dr. Genichi Taguchi whose fundamental thinking was to develop products that hold up to adverse conditions (i.e, Motorola telephones are designed to be dropped because this commonly happens). Motorola apples this quality principle to service, they know that they should plan for the worst when designing our service. When the adverse condition occurs, they should maintain the quality in service.


TQM is frequently touted as the necessary next step in the evolution of modern business management. In theory, it is often hard to argue with the logic of the quality focus advocated by the TQM approach. Unfortunately, TQM initiatives often fail when implementation begins. The failure of TQM is largely due to the fact that all the philosophical, strategic, and measurement dimensions of the TQM concept are not adequately addressed. These three dimensions of TQM should be stressed at different levels of the management hierarchy to varying degrees. The responsibility for establishing the philosophical dimension of TQM falls mostly on top management so that the emphasis of quality can be fully integrated into an organization’s missions. The essential elements of TQM are then incorporated into strategic decisions for various functions of the organization. Functional management teams within the same organization should be allowed to define quality that is most appropriate for their functional areas. Based on the specific functional, working definitions of quality, it is possible to develop a comprehensive quality measurement system capable of capturing the vital information relating to quality. Data can then be analyzed and aggregated when reported to the upper level management for decision making and continuous improvement.

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