Learn the principles upon which the quality function is founded and the potential benefits to industry, customers and stakeholders.

Recommended learning hours: 50

Unit aim: To understand the principles upon which the quality function is founded and the potential benefits to industry, customers and stakeholders.

Assessment type: Assignment

Learning outcomes

  1. Understand the meaning of the word 'quality' when used in a work related environment
  2. Understand how the concept of quality has evolved
  3. Understand the key components of quality management
  4. Understand how quality principles can improve business performance
  5. Understand the use of the 'Plan, Do, Check, Act' (PDCA) cycle within management systems
  6. Understand process design and improvement.

Every successful candidate can at the end of this unit:

  1. Compare the use of the word quality for products, processes, and in relation to business performance
  2. Explain the potential value to business of investing in quality
  3. Outline the key development stages in quality management
  4. Explain how these developments impacted on quality
  5. Describe the key components of quality management
  • Quality control
  • Quality assurance
  • Quality improvement

6. Evaluate the contribution of each component to quality management

7. Explain the quality management principles commonly used in quality management systems

8. Explain how the principles of quality can benefit an organisation, its customers, suppliers and other stakeholders

9. Explain the benefits of a preventive approach to managing for quality and outline the key stages in quality planning

10. Explain how a closed loop management systems may benefit an organisation

11. Describe the four stages of the PDCA cycle and analyse how this can be used to improve quality

12. Use a process flow diagram to illustrate the stages of a process

13. Describe the design and implementation of a process applying the principles of the PDCA cycle.

Indicative content:

  • Understanding quality
    • Definitions of the meaning of the word quality from a range of sources.
  • The evolution of quality
    • The history and tradition of inspection, quality control and quality assurance up to c1970 (BoQK 1.1)
    • The evolution of quality thinking, post c1970 (BoQK 1.2)
  • Key components of quality management
    • Overview of quality planning
    • Overview of quality control
    • Overview of quality improvement.
  • The PDCA cycle
    • The role of each element of PDCA in quality management and the business performance improvement process.
  • Principles of quality
    • Quality management principles underpinning management systems
    • Business benefits – reduce waste, efficiency and effectiveness
    • The typical identities of stakeholders, customers and interested parties
    • Customer and stakeholder needs identified as stated (specified) needs and unstated or hidden needs.
  • Process design
    • Examples of core business processes and support processes
    • Management of key business processes, support processes and the development of a complete management system to deliver customer and stakeholder needs.