Planning for quality and productivity
A Nissan case study

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Page 4: Total Quality Management

Total Quality Management (TQM) is a key feature of Nissan's way of working. TQM involves making customer satisfaction top priority. Given this goal, everything the organisation and its people do is focused on creating high quality. To achieve this, Nissan has to:

  • understand customer requirements
  • consider the processes involved in providing quality, not just the end result
  • prioritise and standardise tasks to deliver quality
  • educate all employees to work in this way.

In practical terms TQM involves:

  • identifying customers and their requirements
  • establishing and using objectives (targets) for all areas of activity
  • basing decisions on researched hard facts rather than on hunches
  • identifying and eliminating the root causes of problems
  • educating and training employees.

TQM is an ongoing process; a way of thinking and doing that requires an 'improvement culture' in which everyone looks for ways of doing better. Building this culture involves making everyone feel their contributions are valued and helping them to develop their capabilities.

A cycle of Plan, Do, Check, Action becomes part of every employee's thinking, because it represents Nissan's way of working.

Nissan | Planning for quality and productivity
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