(Suryyanarayan Indian companies need to go beyond ISO 9000

(Suryyanarayan Ray, 2011) In the opinion ofmost of the respondents, the mere obtaining ISO 9000 Certification is notenough to make their companies competitive globally. So, the immediate reasonfor adoption of Total Quality Management practices in India is that Indiancompanies need to go beyond ISO 9000 Certification by adopting Total QualityManagement practices that are prevalent in the rest of the world. Though mostof the respondent Indian companies are ISO 900 Certified, they do not think itis enough to make them competitive globally, though most of them believe thatISO 900 Standards can act as foundation of TQM in companies. ForeignCollaboration has a positive impact on management practices and Total QualityManagement activities in Indian companies, as it gives an opportunity forIndian companies to imbibe the best Total Quality Management practices from theleading exponents of Total Quality Management practices in the world. Customer Satisfactionand Continual Improvement is the focus of the mission of the Indian companies.The Corporate Objectives of Indian companies centers around CustomerSatisfaction and Quality of Products/Services.

From these facts, it can be concludedthat the main elements of a Total Quality Management in India are CustomerSatisfaction, Continual Improvement and Quality of Products/Services of acompany. However, several misconceptions about Total Quality Management existswhich run contrary to the stated Mission and Strategy of Indian companies. Mostof the respondents are aware of the importance of addressing the implied needsof their customers. At the same time, most of them are aware of TQM being acomprehensive long-term approach.

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However, most of the respondent Indiancompanies have failed to recognize their important roles in the discharge ofCSR. The employees of a company are the internal customers of a company. Thus,to fulfill the basic tenets of TQM philosophy, Indian companies must take intoaccount the welfare and well-being of their employees and workers. Only if theyare satisfied, teamwork will prevail. After all, teamwork is one of the basicpillars of TQM. India has a large population and Indian companies have a largeworkforce. So, Indian companies must take care of its Social Responsibilities.It has been found that the respondent Indian companies often lack incorporatingSocial Responsibility in their mission; vision and strategy the analysis of theresearch data also suggest that in some aspects TQM practices in India are notsatisfactory, particularly in relation to Six Sigma and Market Research.

Thus,it can be said that there are several barriers to implementation of TotalQuality Management like unsatisfactory educational profile of managementpersonnel, poor participation of workers in management, limiting Human ResourceManagement responsibility to a single department, low average man-days 161devoted to training of employees, lack of proper partnership development with thedifferent stakeholders, low Corporate Social Responsibility, inadequateResearch and Development Venture with Universities and Colleges, inadequate useof Six Sigma, lack of proper Market Research, and so on. TQM has importantrepercussions on HRM, workers’ participation in management, and especially onthe top management. Total Quality Management implementation is possible onlythrough top management commitment.

In India, often, there is lack of topmanagement support for Total Quality Management. From the responses, it isevident that most of the respondent Indian companies do not encourage workers’participation in the management of the company. As a result, the upwardcommunication chain is broken and the management-employee interface is notcompletely fruitful.

This hampers the team spirit of Indian companies and actas a barrier to TQM. Government companies do more to discharge their CorporateSocial Responsibility as they are pledged to contribute at least 4% of theirNet Profits annually. Similar commitment is awaited from the private sector.Many respondent Indian companies do not have joint Research and DevelopmentVenture with Universities and Colleges.

This acts as an obstacle to morefruitful Research and Development work which could have been used to synergizeand develop power and technology that could be subsequently transferred back toIndustry. Many respondent Indian companies tend to think of quality as a partof Total Cost of a company. Most Indian companies have inadequate Six Sigma andMarker Research activities.

The concept of JIT and Zero defects are still notclear to most of the respondent companies. From all these, we can conclude thatthe development status of Total Quality Management in India is not up to themark. Total Quality Management has repercussions on all the management areas of162 the company, be it in production or operation or personnel or cost ormarketing or research/planning or human resource development.

To overcome allthe obstacles and barriers, TQM strategies need to be developed in differentoperational areas. Like in production, Six Sigma and Kaizen needed to improveefficiency and reduce job time that are often lacking in Indian companies. Inoperation management, the top management must shape the strategy and thesupervisors should take tactical decisions for more efficient use of companyresources and effectiveness in meeting customer requirements. More trainedsupervisors with more exposure to modern Total Quality Management practiceslike Benchmarking, Poka-Yoke and Quality Circles are also the need of the hour.Among the sample companies, not all companies employ Quality Circle or PokaYokeactivities. These value-added activities must be aligned to marketingmanagement where the orientation is towards the needs and wants of customers.Here also, Indian companies do not always invest in adequate marketingresearch. In human resource development, Indian companies need to enlarge theresponsibility of the human resource management to rest of the departments ofthe company.

A few suggestions are put forward for improvement of theprevailing scenario