Friday, 29 January 2016
Safety with Quality and Productivity
The discipline of quality is still evolving. Earlier a reactive approach was employed based on inspection approach. Now quality related activities have been broadened and are seen as vital for developing successful strategies for achieving the planned or intended objectives. Now word quality is not only confined to manufacturing only but other disciplines of the business e.g. purchasing, engineering, research and development, sales, marketing etc. also demand for it. The ultimate objective of quality is to meet the customer expectation who pays for the product or service. So Quality is vital element to retain the customer i.e. business.
Productivity is another key challenge to the business. No doubt retaining the customer satisfaction through better quality is important for the business survival. However productivity is another factor significantly important to the business. Good productivity means keeping all the stake holders happy through win-win situation which comes through better offer for the customer, more revenue-profitability, and more dividends for the share holders, bonus and salary increments etc. for the employees boosting up the morale of everybody.
Safety at work is another concern significantly important. Whatever sort of business you are, there is always the possibility of an accident or damage to someone's health. All work exposes people to hazards, be they: loads which have to be manually handled; dangerous machinery; toxic substances; electricity; working with display screen equipment or even psychological hazards such as stress. The reason there are not even more accidents and diseases caused by work is because systems of prevention are in place which have been built up over generations. Safety does not come about by accident: most accidents happen because they have not been prevented.
In majority of the cases, organisations go for various certifications which is good. However it is not enough to build to lead to business excellence. Being a student quality since last two decades, I have trying to work and learn quality and safety. With the passage of time various standards have been introduced and revised. However it is evident that single system is not enough to meet the ongoing and future competition.
Although introduced at much early stage in various countries, this is the time to work on concept of Total Quality Management. Being accountable for quality and safety, as dedicated and honest professionals it is our responsibility to come out of the tunnel vision on achieving certifications only and take quality on a broad spectrum basis. Survival of the fittest is still valid and will stay valid. This message is especially important for the youngsters who have recently started their career in the discipline of quality or planning to start it. Go through the work done by quality gurus and try to work on integrated systems addressing safety, quality and productivity. All three are interlinked with each other. No doubt in a number of organisations it already exists but there is long way to go.
Safety, quality and productivity add significant contribution to successful business in the form of positive impact on cash flow which is achieved through better quality, safety and productivity with safe operations by avoiding / reducing wastage incurred through various operations. It results into a win-win situation for all stake holders i.e. share holders, employees, customers, regulatory authorities etc.
Author: Syed Farhat Raza
Quality-Safety-Productivity Consultant at SQP Consultants