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Apr 18, 2010

Two Approaches in Quality Control

In production, quality control has long become a part of management system, a tool to help manager inspection and control the product quality. However, because the characteristics of recognition and belief differ from country to country, each quality control method, therefore, has its own approach and effect. Most outstanding of all are the two trends, the two approaches in Quality Control in Japan and in Western Europe.

1. The former approache:

Started from the belief that Quality management is a matter of technology which is decided by technical standards and requirements, materials, machines, technology.... therefore, to control the quality, people base on Statistical Quality Control (SQC) and apply automatic examination tools in and after production time. To make basis for comparison, people create quality standards for the products and unify testing methods. Thereafter, take tests to evaluate the decree of compliance of the product with those standards or technical requirements. On basis of the test results, the product quality will be decided to be satisfactory or dissatisfactory.

In this trend, Quality Control methods are formed such as QC (Quality Control), Product Quality Examination and TQC (Total QC). In production system, there are employees trained to examine the product quality - who work independently and specially.

2. The latter approache:

Differing from the above belief, the second trend assumes that QC by examining and removing defect products will be unable to avoid mistakes. Examination does not create Quality but the whole process does, from design phase, production phase to consumption phase. The quality must be assured in every phase, every work and must involve every employee in the organization.

Therefore, to control the quality according to this trend, people must consider Quality Assurance to be their main duty. This duty is done by regular and planned activities of senior managers. Quality Assurance must be started with being set as a main goal of the company. After being publicly introduced about Quality Improvement Programs, all the employees will do researches to find best ways to fulfill their duties. As a result, in companies following this trend, there are many Quality Movements with the participation of all the employees.

Management methods following this trend can be deeply humanistic, such as TQM (Total Quality Management), TQCo (Total Quality Commitment) and CWQI (Company Wide Quality Improvement). With these methods, people can make best use of the human resource in the company, and the result is that not only the product quality is assured but also the business operations are improved.

Above are the two most important trends in QC in the world. These 2 trends are formed throughout the process of consciousness about relevant matters to Quality and have been verified for over 40 years of application as basis for QC in many countries. However, which trend and which model to be selected depends on many specific conditions of each company, each country and each requirement from reality.