Principles of Quality Management

Quality is an important factor in the success of any business. Creating high quality products can lead to increased customer satisfaction and generate higher revenues for brands. On the other hand, substandard quality can damage a brand image and cost them time and money. According to the 1-10-100 rule, the longer an issue goes undetected in the supply-chain, the more it costs to fix the problem. This is why having a robust quality inspection program is crucial for brands. 


One way to ensure product quality is by adopting the ISO 9000 which details international quality management standards. The ISO 9000 is built around seven interlinking principles that allow brands to create a well-functioning quality inspection program and consistent quality of product. 


Customer Focus

It is important for brands to understand their consumers, meet their expectations, and continuously improve the customer experience. 

Canada Goose knows that their customers are willing to pay more for a premium product and keep all of their production domestic to ensure quality. Manufacturing within Canada enables them to get a better understanding of their customers and their requirements for the cold weather. 



Another important factor within an organization is effective leadership with a clear vision and goal. All employees need to be on the same page about what is an accepted level of quality for their products, and this can only be done with strong communication from the brand leadership. In 2016, Gucci’s revenue grew by 21% because the CEO of the brand placed increased focus on clear, effective communication throughout the organization. 


Process Approach 

Top executives must study the brand’s supply chain to see if resources are allocated properly and efficiently. One way to do this is by viewing manufacturing activities as distinct processes, identifying linkages within these processes to see how they function together. Executives should also engage in risk-management, determining how a failure in any of these areas would affect other parts of the supply chain, and the end product. 


Engagement of People 

Employees within an organization must be considered and feel valued, but also be pushed to continually improve and innovate. One way to do this is through the use of financial incentives. Levi’s has seen a boost in productivity across the board since they’ve integrated financial rewards throughout their organization. Financial invectives centered around quality of product will likely result in those quality standards being met or even exceeded by employees. 


Improvement & Evidence-based Decision Making 

The brand’s supply chain and manufacturing activities should always be scrutinized for improvement. Improvements can be made with evidence-based decision making coming from data collection. As such, technological integration is important to gather this data. Brands can choose from a variety of quality inspection tools like QUONDA, to gather data on inline and final quality inspections. This will allow the brand to see if they need to optimize or improve their manufacturing processes in any way. 


Relationship Management 

Brands and their suppliers need to be on the same page in order to meet the expected level of quality. This makes it essential for the brand to have a productive relationship with their suppliers and ensure that there are clear lines of communication. When clear communication is not present in the supply chain, the results can often be disastrous for the brand. For example, in 2013, Lululemon had to recall 17% of their total product due to quality defects, resulting in a total loss of $67 million for the company. They have taken corrective action since, firing former CEO and revaluating their suppliers and manufacturing processes to ensure optimal quality. 


Principles of Quality Management
Triple Tree Solutions
Published 16 January 2023

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