Academic journal article Journal of Global Business and Technology

The Relation between Quality Management and Innovation Performance in the Textile Sector in Portugal

Academic journal article Journal of Global Business and Technology

The Relation between Quality Management and Innovation Performance in the Textile Sector in Portugal

Article excerpt

INTRODUCTION

Quality Management, Innovation and Performance have been thoroughly studied, nevertheless there are not many studies that address all these three issues jointly. Our research tries to follow this novel path, , allowing attempting to relate these concepts in order to facilitate a deeper understanding of this complex relation between all these variables.

The drive for quality is an ongoing challenge for managers and how they organize the activities of the company, so they can meet their real intentions and expectations of their customers .Quality management is an important option for organizations achieve gain competitive advantages over their competitors.

Based on the concepts of Quality management, innovation and performance it was our purpose to realize the extent to which these factors are connected and how they influence the turnover of Portuguese textile sector companies. The textile sector, specifically the clothing industry is undergoing a period of restructuring and conversion that lead to the elimination of thousands of jobs. With the end trade barriers for Chinese companies, strong competitive pressure created by economies of cheap labor, required several changes. Portugal to a new competitive capacity and flexibility both with respect to products and the production processes and management structures.

The main objectives of this research are to verify:

- What is the relationship between Quality Management, Innovation and Performance?

- What is the relationship between these two dimensions (Quality and Performance) and the level of innovation?

- Are There mediating variables in this relation?

QUALITY MANAGEMENT AND INNOVATION

TQM

In 1956, Armand Feingenbaum introduced the concept of Total Quality Control (TQC) that was defined as an effective system for integrating the efforts of developing, maintaining and improving quality to allow the marketing, engineering, production and service reach complete customer satisfaction (Santos, 2010).. His work was the starting point for the Standards of Quality Assurance System, which later, in the 1980s , led to the international standards ISO 9000 ( International Organization for Standardization , 1987 ) based in Geneva (Santos, 2010). This concept was the also the foundation of Total Quality Management (TQM) and Quality Managament fields.

Nevertheless, there is not a clear definition of TQM. According to Miller, W. (1996), TQM, is a progressive process through which management takes all necessary steps to allow any member of the organization in carrying out its activities, it is responsible for compliance with standards and to meet or exceed the needs of its internal and external customers. According Zehir C. et al. (2012), the TQM is a holistic approach to quality improvement for businesses in order to improve performance in terms of quality and also innovation.

The benefits of using TQM in management are different and quite important. These practices can lead to improved operational efficiency, optimized resources, reduced costs and increased employee motivation. While being on one of the tools with greater impact on turnover, TQM is also one of the most difficult tools to implement effectively. Its main philosophy is that organizations acquire strengths by satisfying the needs of their customers (Zehir et al. 2012). TQM is an option to redirect the management of organizations. According to Longo et al. (1996), it values the human being within organizations, recognizing their ability to solve problems on the spot when they occur, and implements an enduring search of perfection.

It uses a variety of analytical techniques and management tools, such as the Six Sigma methodology to analyze processes, performance and supply chain logistics. Thus, the general principles of Total Quality are:

Customer Focus,

Quality first,

Improvement of products and processes,

Involvement, commitment and human resource development. …

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