Sample Article Review on Factors of TQM in Hong Kong Industries

Critical Success Factors of TQM Implementation in Hong Kong Industries

Anthony, Leung, and Knowles’ article, titled “Critical success factors of TQM implementation in Hong Kong Industries,” looks at the philosophy of total quality management (TQM) as a framework for continuous improvement of product performance, processes, and services towards the achievement and exceeding of the customers’ expectations. The article traces the origins of TQM as a business strategy from the 90s to its evolution as a philosophy with specific emphasis on the individuals using the strategy and not the philosophy as a tool. The article enumerates enhanced employee involvement, better communication, improved productivity, and improved customer satisfaction as some of the potential benefits of using the philosophy.

To investigate the critical success factors of TQM, the authors conducted a research that involved the use of 400 questionnaires sent to a diverse range of industries, including electronics, telecommunications, textile, and machinery, among others. The result of research identified seven factors as the critical TQM success factors. These factors included training and education; quality data and reporting; management commitment; customer satisfaction orientation; role of quality department; communication to improve quality and continuous improvement. Analysis of the result, on the other hand, detailed three strengths of TQM, namely human resources, open culture and acceptance, and participation by management. The weaknesses that prevent TQM include lack of awareness of quality at the management level and lack of employee involvement.

The key learning points of the article include:

  1. Human resources is an important factor in TQM; it is the major driving force as the executive understand the firm and therefore their involvement does not only help in developing an open culture, but also ensures the involvement of the management in TQM.
  2. The involvement of management in improving quality is important. The management should be aware of quality, and in so doing also involve the rest of the employees as they both work towards the achievement of TQM and customer satisfaction.
  3. Proper management and implementation of TQM has many potential benefits. These include improved communication, employee involvement, and, most importantly, customer satisfaction.
  4. The critical success factors for TQM are varied. However, all factors work together for a proper and successful TQM.

Total quality management is one of the most important business strategies, with its origins in the 1990s. With the evolution of business, however, TQM has also evolved to become more inclusive and involving of the management. The article does a good job in providing the reader with a historical origin of TQM. It also rightly includes some of the problems that TQM-based organizations faced, as well as the problems within management. By choosing Hong Kong for the study, the article rightly chooses a case study point, given that Hong Kong-based companies use TQM in their daily operations. This makes them the perfect candidates to conduct the research, and therefore an eye opener for organizations that do not use TQM.

The article additionally includes the potential benefits of TQM; however, while the research is about the critical success factors of TQM, the article does not in any way include any of the difficulties in the implementation of TQM, as well as the disadvantages of TQM implementation. Moreover, in conducting the research on TQM, the researchers only used questionnaires, which have inherent disadvantages. A mixed-method approach in conducting the research would have been much better, and given better, more in-depth results. Even more is that the 44 items used in the investigation of the critical success factors were too many. Narrowing them down to a few of the most important items would have given better results.

TQM has great potential for organizations. The involvement of human resource department in the implementation of TQM present opportunities for improvement not only within organizational performance, but also in relation to customer satisfaction. By involving employees, organizations have a better chance of success than when only the management is involved in all decision-making.