Does Quality equal Manufacturing and Engineering Only?

Is your company suffering from Lost Opportunities in Cost Savings and Revenue Growth?

Currently (and in the past), Companies focus their Quality efforts in Manufacturing and Engineering.  Certainly this makes sense in that you must design and produce good products (and services) in order to generate revenue and profit.  But what about the rest of the organization – Purchasing, Legal, Sales, Marketing, HR?

Is Quality just for Manufacturing and Engineering, and in many cases, only a select few within these functions, or are there reasons to broaden the focus of Quality to include more of the organization?  The direct answer is YES.  By broadening the reach of quality to involve all functions within an organization, or an enterprise wide quality model, everyone is responsible for quality and therefore cost savings, revenue growth, safety enhancements and efficiencies and effectiveness  can come from everywhere and anywhere in the organization.

In multiple industries – Manufacturing, Automotive, Healthcare, Food and Beverage, Education, Government and others, most organizations only have a few “Quality Experts” or a small “Quality Department” that are tasked with increasing quality and blamed for quality problems.  When Quality is expanded to include all functions, everyone becomes accountable and responsible for Quality but the benefits don’t stop there.

Expanding Quality to include everyone gets everyone in the action of saving money, increasing revenue, improving safety and increasing efficiency and effectiveness – and this isn’t “extra work”, it’s the work that should be done “all the time.”  Expanding Quality also creates positive cultural growth by involving everyone.  Everyone speaks in the language of Quality – People, Safety, Cost, and Time and everyone understands the tools and methods of Quality so “plug and play” project leaders can take on projects both within their areas of expertise and outside of them.

So how do you determine if your organization may have an opportunity to improve quality beyond Operations, Manufacturing and Engineering?  Simply ask a few people:  “Who is responsible for Quality”?  If they say “not me” or “the Quality Department is in Building #2,” well, you just may have found your opportunity to improve cost savings AND revenue growth.