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Determinants of Quality Performance in High- and Low-Quality Plants

Summary: This article examines the differences in quality management practices between plants that achieve high, intermediate, and low levels of quality performance. Data from a survey of U.S. plants in the machinery, transportation components, and electronics industries were analyzed using multiple discriminant analysis, It was found that key practices included concurrent engineering, new-product quality, employee involvement, feedback, maintenance, labor skill level, selection for teamwork potential, process control, and supplier relationships. An interesting result was that the plants that achieved the best and poorest levels of quality performance used similar (strong) levels of these quality management practices, while those plants that achieved intermediate levels of quality performance used inferior quality management practices. It is believed that the intermediate-quality plants may be complacent, while the low-quality plants are striving to catch up and the high-quality plants seek continuous improvement.

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  • Topics: Supplier Quality, Product Development and Recall, Quality Management
  • Keywords: Continuous improvement (CI),Customer supplier relationships,Discriminant analysis,Performance management,Japanese quality management,Product design,Quality management (QM),Empirical model
  • Author: Flynn, Barbara B.; Schroeder, Roger; Sakakibara, Sadao
  • Journal: Quality Management Journal