Defining Quality

Defining Quality

  • ·         Quality – Quality in its simplest sense, refers to the ability of a supplier to provide goods and services in conformance with specifications.  Quality may also refer to whether ith item performs in actual use to the expectations of the original requisitioner (customer requirements), regardless of conformance with specification.
  • ·         Function – refers to the action(s) that an item or service is designed to perform.
  • ·         Suitability – refers to the ability of a material, good, or service to meet the intended functional use.
  • ·         Reliability – is the mathematical probability (chance) that a product will function for a stipulated period of time.  While one will have products that don’t function over the stipulated time period, a greater number of products over the long haul need to function within the stipulated time period.
  • ·         Quality Dimensions – A supplier’s performance many times may be crucial to the buyer’s performance.  Close cooperation between suppliers and buyers is necessary to achieve significant improvement over time.  There are eight dimensions of quality, and those eight dimensions are:

 

  • o        Performance – how well the product actually performs in comparison to how it was designed to perform.
  • o        Features – the number tasks a product can perform irrespective of reliability or durability.
  • o        Reliability – the likelihood a product will perform throughout its expected life.  As stated earlier, one will have products that don’t function over the stipulated time period, a greater number of products over the long haul need to function within the stipulated time period.
  • o        Durability – refers to the actual life expectancy of a product
  • o        Conformance – refers to whether a firm’s products actually meet the precise description or specification as designed.
  • o        Serviceability – refers to the ease of fixing or repairing a product that fails.
  • o        Aesthetics – the styling and specific materials used in a product.
  • o        Perceived quality – the customer is the ultimate judge of quality, and his/her perception of the product meeting requirements is of paramount importance.
  • ·         “Best Buy” – assumes a certain minimum measure of suitability (given needs and customer requirements) but also considers ultimate customer needs and total cost of ownership.
  • ·         Determining the “Best Buy” – Procurement has a right to audit, question, and suggest what is to be recognized as far as suitability for a product or service, along with the need for early involvement during the design phase of the product or service.  The purchaser is in a key position to present the latest information from the marketplace that may permit modifications in design, more flexibility in specifications, or changes in manufacturing methods that will improve value for the ultimate customer.