Table of Contents
Quality Management 2
Question 1; Reflect on your learning progress for the unit during the semester. Explain how you approached the weekly activities, the case study, and how you dealt with the new concepts that you were required to learn. This â€˜reflectiveâ€™ report should include the following: 2
Question 3; For many people, the risks of driverless cars are a serious concern. While technology is evolving to limit the risks of driverless cars, the lack of industry rules and legislation is a problem. Applied EV would like to understand what people are afraid of. 3
Question 4; Reflect on your learning progress for the unit during the semester. Explain how you approached the weekly activities, the case study, and how you dealt with the new concepts that you were required to learn. This â€˜reflectiveâ€™ report should include the following: 5
Question 1; Reflect on your learning progress for the unit during the semester. Explain how you approached the weekly activities, the case study, and how you dealt with the new concepts that you were required to learn. This â€˜reflectiveâ€™ report should include the following:
a. Whether â€˜qualityâ€™ means that the product of the project and the productâ€™s creation
are likely to be both expensive and time-consuming.
Quality can be defined in different ways depending on the context. In manufacturing, quality refers to the state of products being free from defects, and deficiencies and being consistent across multiple units of the same product (Martin et al., 2020). The most important feature of quality assurance is customer satisfaction; products should serve the intended purpose as advertised by the producers. This implies that all the information provided about the product and its intended usability should be consistent with the actual performance once consumers purchase and use it. Therefore, to ensure quality is necessary The ISO 8402-1986 which is the standard for quality defines it as “the totality of features and characteristics of a product or service that bears its ability to satisfy stated or implied needs.”(Fowler,2021). That manufacturers adopt a customer-focused product development model which introduces the concepts of process management and optimization, product testing and retesting models, and quality function management. The three most important aspects of any project are quality, cost, and time (Wright &Lawlor-Wright, 2018). Although these aspects are interlocked and influence each other, maintaining the quality of Applied EV self-driving cars does not have to be an expensive and time-consuming process. There exists a strong relationship between these three elements with trade-offs existing between them as illustrated below (Wright &Lawlor-Wright, 2018).
Blanc Robot is a collaboration between two companies across different continents and markets. The development of the product therefore will require extensive consultation to align the expectations and the goals of both companies towards producing a product that serves both their intended purposes. This implies that in the short run, that is, product conceptualization and design, ensuring quality will require time scheduling and therefore increase the project actualization time. Task interdependence between the two organizations is high further heightening the need for constant correspondence and increasing the timeline for the project (FranÃ§ et al., 2018). Since quality is closely tied to customer satisfaction, ensuring that it is met involves conceptualizing consumer perception and needs through surveys and research, and upon product prototyping and development it involves numerous tests as shown through the last two years of continuous testing on the part of Applied EV (Dorgan,2022). This struggle to ensure product quality through customer satisfaction therefore further increases the product timelines. Although in the short run, quality increases the timelines of completing projects, in the long run ensuring quality is attained and is consistent reduces the overall project timelines by avoiding repetitive processes through process reengineering and optimization. The short-term costs of projects are increased as the processes are optimized to ensure quality, in the case of the Blanco robot, the quality assurance processes imply that the company has to comply with international standards that increase the cost. In the long run, however, failure to comply with these standards would result in adverse effects that would bring about increased costs through for example recalling of products which increase the costs of the project exponentially, this scenario is referred to as the cost of non-compliance (Rosenfeld, 2019). Therefore, we conclude that assurance of quality is a cost-reducing process in the long run.
b. Whether it is possible for the projectâ€™s documentation to have most of the diagrams and techniques, and still not address quality issues.
It is possible that a project may have all the necessary documentation and fail to address quality issues. There are several barriers to quality management that may affect its implementation. First, there may be inadequate human and technical resources to facilitate quality management(Sebastianelli&Tamimi, 2003). Quality management is a rigorous and iterative process requiring continuous improvement over time. When starting a project, documentation is a bare minimum that companies focus on. However, they may lack extra resources to cater to other procedures that ensure excellent quality. Another barrier to quality management is organizational culture(Sebastianelli&Tamimi, 2003). Some companies do not prioritize quality management and improvement over time. Although they may follow all basic procedures, they may lack a keen interest in checking on quality issues and addressing the gaps noted over time. Lack of data may also be a barrier to quality standards(Sebastianelli&Tamimi, 2003). Improving a product requires companies to gather sufficient and adequate data in form of feedback over time. Companies that lack adequate data may direct input toward the wrong metrics or overlook quality issues.
The improvement of quality requires commitment from top management as they make decisions and allocate resources toward quality management. When management lacks commitment, employees are forced to work with limited resources, forcing them to prioritize finished products over quality products. Finally, quality improvement requires companies to focus on their customers(Sebastianelli&Tamimi, 2013). The definition of quality is pegged on what customers view as the best quality for their money hence the need for companies to identify what clients think of as quality. Otherwise, they risk making modifications that clients do not need or value which distorts the meaning of quality. It is crucial that companies conduct market research to identify what customers need and make the necessary improvements. Technical requirements, while necessary, are only the bare minimum and do not guarantee that top quality will be achieved.
Question 3; For many people, the risks of driverless cars are a serious concern. While technology is evolving to limit the risks of driverless cars, the lack of industry rules and legislation is a problem. Applied EV would like to understand what people are afraid of.
a) Create a cause and effect diagram (fishbone or Ishikawa diagram) to identify whypeople using roads may be afraid of driverless cars.
Gage is broken Loss of jobs unpredictable road
Long road distancesFear of passengers not enough road signs
Dead battery lack of enough car training Software failure Engine failure
Security lack of road usersâ€™ awareness CPU failure
Many road users are afraid of self-driving vehicles for many different reasons which may be caused by different reasons. Some of the reasons that people may be afraid of self-driving cars may that have been portrayed in the above diagram include;
Software malfunctions: The vehicle’s software may malfunction and cause serious road problems and accidents.
Security: road users are afraid if the security of the vehicle will be adequate where they have the fear that they may be controlled remotely and used by hackers to cause accidents
Accidents: self-driving cars are trained using predictable or past events if they occur, they can be able to handle them but if the situation is unpredictable, it may cause an error and the cars may not be able to handle them.
Poor road conditions: Self-driving cars are trained under marked and regulated roads if the roads are poorly maintained or created, they may cause a lot of road accidents due to unfamiliar situations.
Software failure: if autonomous cars have software failures, they may cause the car to cause accidents. This causes users to fear self-driving cars.
Poor judgment of road users:If other users don’t observe traffic rules, it may cause confusion for the self-driving cars increasing road accidents.
Power failure: If the cars experience power failure on a busy road it may not only cause accidents but also inconveniences to passengers and other road users.
Loss of jobs: professional drivers are afraid to lose their jobs to self-driving cars.
Question 4; Reflect on your learning progress for the unit during the semester. Explain how you approached the weekly activities, the case study, and how you dealt with the new concepts that you were required to learn. This â€˜reflectiveâ€™ report should include the following:
a) What study and assessment risks did you face before, during, and towards the end ofthe semester and how did you manage them, and does this have any relevance to managing risks on a real workplace project?
The learning process is akin to production processes and has associated risks and challenges. The goal of any learning module is to impart given knowledge and skills, quality is associated with this process and is assessed by various KPIs. The key indicators of the quality produced are the performance of the student in evaluations and assessments administered and the ability to apply learned content and skills in solving real-world problems. In ensuring these quality standards are met, I encountered various risks that threatened the actualization of the learning goals. The major risks encountered are:
i) Financial Risks
The learning process involved various costs, although the fees paid to the school had been done in advance, various hidden costs are accruing such as the cost of internet services necessary for research in the completion of assessments and further personal reading, the cost of stationery, cost of transport, among many other costs. These costs posed a threat to the successful and timely completion of intended tasks. This risk was mitigated by proper budgeting and early sourcing of funds to ensure smooth running and timely completion of school work.
ii) Learning Risks
This entails the mental and emotional risks that affected my ability to learn and to deliver timely and good-quality responses to the assessments and tests administered in the module. These include failure to understand the requirements for the different assessments, failure to understand the material taught and shared by the lecturers, and technical language across some of the modules which led to a further understanding gap. These risks were mitigated by paying attention to detail and seeking clarification from the relevant people and working in close collaboration with my classmates to achieve the set goals. This approach is important in addressing problems in real work situations as teamwork is an integral part of ensuring that projects are undertaken and produce results as expected. Production requires that all involved parties play their role in an organized and synchronized manner.
iii) Time risks
Assessments and tasks have due dates and timelines for submission as well as review. There was the constant risk that these deadlines would not be met resulting in failure or grade reduction. I mitigated this risk by ensuring that I planned well ahead and had scheduled periods for specific tasks. Time management is an important aspect of any project as quality is often tied to timely delivery, therefore, this approach to mitigating time risks is important in solving problems in work situations.
b) Describe what quality management techniques, if any, you used in your ECU work this semester. (Hint: You can think of following assignment specifications, continuous improvement, referencing,…)
Total quality management refers to the continuous process of eliminating errors in the production process and optimization of all processes involved in the actualization of projects in a bid to ensure that the end result meets the expected standards (TopaloviÄ‡, 2015). In the learning process of various modules undertaken in ECU, I employed various principles and methods used in TQM to ensure that the learning outcomes anticipated were met to the level that was expected. First, benchmarking is an integral technique used in the process of quality management, it refers to the act of comparing expected performance metrics to those who have already achieved similar goals in other areas. I benchmarked against previous students who had undergone similar programs to get ideas on the dos and donâ€™ts towards ensuring that I achieved my learning expectations.
Secondly, I employed the total quality management technique of continuous process improvement; it refers to the incremental adjustment of way of doing things towards ensuring that the outcome of processes meets standards(TopaloviÄ‡, 2015). It is integral as it enables one to make improvements based on real-time data from analyzing the milestones achieved and missed across different stages in a process to correct errors and reinforce good practices. I employed this technique in my learning through the PDCA method where I made plans on how to handle various tasks, carry out the tasks, check the outcomes, and acting to improve the process based on the outcomes. For example, I would get instructions on various assessments, gather the resources required to complete them and have a time plan, do and deliver them and get feedback from the respective lecturers. The feedback gotten would inform how I would handle subsequent tasks, by improving on time management when I delivered late or carrying out better research where the lecturers felt my work was inadequate in depth.
Process reengineering is a quality management technique that involves analyzing the different ways that operations and processes have the aim of identifying weaknesses and inefficiencies and organizing them in a way that better meets the required outcomes(TopaloviÄ‡, 2015). In my case, I employed this technique by looking at the different ways that I could approach learning, especially further reading and assignments completion, such as peer learning versus tutor systems versus collaboration with the lecturers. I analyzed this through the pros and cons of each to identify the most suitable to my schedule as well as the most likely to accomplish the intended results. Through this process I was able to come up with a suitable mix of peer learning and lecturer consultation, I chose these two methods rather than the more common tutor learning system since they were cheaper and gave better channels of communication which was a key aspect needed to ensure I grasped better the content covered in class. These two methods also ensured that my learning process stayed within the scope of what the lecturers taught in class, as opposed to tutors who are not conversant with the style and content delivered since they are not part of the class.
c) Based on your answer to (a) and (b)above, what changes, if any, would you make to your approach to risk and quality in your work in the future? Try and target your answer to your future role as a project manager.
Risk management is an important factor in the success of any project, the risks encountered in the learning process at ECU were well handled through prior anticipation and proper planning to thwart them. However, the anticipation process was not optimized enough through a risk prioritization schedule; this resulted in expending resources towards mitigating risks equally rather than ranking them in order of probability to happen and the severity in the event of happening. In a professional setting where the resources are scarce and not available to everyone, it is important to rank the risks ensuring to ensure efficient resource use in risk mitigation. The struggle to achieve quality in the various modules undertaken resulted in processes that were cheap turning expensive through for example the employment of tutors; this is a problem that could be countered through better planning to increase the uptake of information from the lecturers and peers. This change is relevant in professional settings as better planning is associated with reduced project costs.
Dihardjo, Djojo&Ellitan, Lena. (2021). Total Quality Management: A Review of Recent Trend. 2394-9333.
Fowler, P. (2021, August 24). The “definition of quality”.PFCS. Retrieved October 30, 2022, from https://www.petefowler.com/blog/2019/6/19/the-definition-of-quality#:~:text=ISO%208402%2D1986%20standard%20defines,and%20therefore%20production%20will%20decrease
FranÃ§, N. A., Chiocchio, ois, Grenier, S., O’, T. A., Neill, N. A., Savaria, K., &Willms, J. D. (2018). The effects of collaboration on performance: A multilevel validation in project teams. International Journal of Project Organisation and Management, 4(1), 1. https://doi.org/10.1504/ijpom.2012.045362
Martin, J., Elg, M., &Gremyr, I. (2020). The many meanings of quality: Towards a definition in support of sustainable operations. Total Quality Management & Business Excellence, 1â€“14. https://doi.org/10.1080/14783363.2020.1844564
Rosenfeld, Y. (2019). Cost of quality versus cost of nonâ€quality in construction: The crucial balance. Construction Management and Economics, 27(2), 107â€“117. https://doi.org/10.1080/01446190802651744
Sebastianelli, R., &Tamimi, N. (2003).Understanding the obstacles to TQM success.Quality Management Journal, 10(3), 45â€“56. https://doi.org/10.1080/10686967.2003.11919072
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TopaloviÄ‡, S. (2015).The implementation of Total Quality Management in order to improve production performance and enhancing the level of customer satisfaction.Procedia Technology, 19, 1016â€“1022. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.protcy.2015.02.145
Wright, A., &Lawlor-Wright, T. (2018).Project success and quality. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781351213271
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