Defining the Role of Organizational Leadership in Quality Management
Quality management has been a prime aspect of business management and everyone in the organization should be aware of it. The top management of many organizations still does not understand its responsibility to establish a quality culture where every employee focuses on maintaining the quality of end products by delivering their works/tasks efficiently. Thankfully, ISO 9001 was published and is a universally accepted standard for the quality management system or QMS. Apart from underlying the requirements for establishing a framework for quality management, it also mentions the role of leadership and commitment of the top management in maintaining quality. In this blog, we are going to discuss it. Ensuring the consistent role of leadership in quality management is a prerequisite for your organization to provide a uniform direction to the staff and improve the quality of your products/services. The following section explains in brief points what organizational leaders are supposed to do for quality assurance and management.
Roles of the Organization’s Leaders in Quality Management
Making QMS a Central Responsibility
Most organizations have a formal approach to QMS. It means they have certain procedures for quality control which are delegated to a few senior staff and are followed at a particular stage. This is a highly ineffective approach. The certification of the QMS made it clear that quality management becomes a central responsibility of the organization and not a formal one. It must be integrated across all processes and aspects of your business. Therefore, the role of senior management becomes significant now. They must formulate policies and objectives for quality management, promote them across the entire organization, designate responsibilities to departments or staff, and allocate the resources and tools necessary for implementing the QMS.
Creating Uniformity through Communication
One of the most integral roles of leaders is to generate a vision for quality and help every employee believe in it. It’s not easily done without proper communication, especially in large organizations that have hundreds of staff. Therefore, the second vital role is to establish strong communication channels in the organization so that all employees are clearly and directly connected with the management leaders. This ensures your visions and goals regarding quality are quickly delivered to all and they work towards it.
Focusing on the Customers First
It is also the responsibility of the organization’s top management to ensure that the customer requirements and expectations are known by the employees and are met in every product/service. The management leaders should consider customer satisfaction as their priority and determine all types of effective methods to ensure it, such as conducting online customer polls, collecting reviews, providing feedback forms, holding POS surveys, and maintaining a customer complaint register.
Ensuring Collective Responsibility in Decision-Making
Good leaders aren’t considered as controllers, but as mentors or coaches. They respect all the subordinate level staff and guide them to improve their job roles and performance. They are called participative leaders, who consider the perspective of employees while making important decisions regarding quality. They listen to any proposals or suggestions offered by the employees whenever necessary and apply them if deemed fit for their purpose. Good participative leaders also recognize and support the employees whose roles or processes specifically add value to the products or services.
Reviewing the QMS Performance
The top management team of your organization will also thoroughly assess the QMS at frequent planned intervals. They are required to do so to establish the consistency, adequacy, and efficiency of your QMS in achieving the determined quality objectives. The reviews by the management team should be done with proper planning. They should inform the employees beforehand so that they can prepare for it and cooperate in the review process. Employees who are directly working with the QMS would note down the issues or inadequacies that they face and notify the managers about them during the review. Subsequently, the managers would identify the changes or improvements required in the QMS after reviewing and then decide what to do. They should also maintain detailed records of every review so that they can appraise the performance of the QMS over time.
To make quality a central focus in your business and comply with the ISO standard’s requirements, the management team should not just be proactive at implementing the QMS but also encourage the participation of employees across the organization. Therefore, they need to create policy and objectives, communicate with employees, and provide them training, ensure collective participation in decision-making, and review the QMS frequently. All of these ensure the true commitment and roles of leadership in quality management and we, as quality assurers or auditors help you conform to all the leadership requirements. Compliancehelp Consulting LLC, is a trusted and leading service provider of quality assurance and certification services. We help organizations gain relevant ISO standards to improve their performance in the most cost-effective way. To get our services or enquire more, contact us!