Customer-Oriented Quality Management in the Automotive Industry

Customer-Oriented Quality Management in the Automotive Industry

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Inhaltsangabe:Abstract: In times of severe competition, it is of crucial importance to create a competitive advantage to differentiate from the competitors and to sustain the business of the company. This thesis intends to show that a customer-focused quality management is one way to create a sustainable competitive advantage. Quality controls along the whole value chain -before, during and after production- leads to failure free products, which save costs on the one hand and have thus a positive influence on the company s revenue. On the other hand failure free products that meet the customers expectations lead to satisfied customers who build up a brand loyalty and conduct retention sales, which have a positive influence on the company s sales, market share as well as the overall image. Furthermore, this thesis points out that it is important to listen to the voice of the customers and get an insight in the customer s needs and wants. To fulfil or even exceed their expectations leads to customer satisfaction, which is a key to success in today s business world. In addition, the customer demands in regard of quality are growing continuously and new technologies are appearing on the markets on a regular basis. Therefore the producers are forced to keep to the latest technology developments and to get hold on the changing customer needs. But even without this external pressure, quality improvement is justified from a cost point of view. The applicability of a customer-oriented quality management is shown in the practical part of this thesis, when the quality of the Saab models is analyzed from the customer s perspective. Due to the arguments, outlined in this thesis, it can be summarized that a quality management with a focus on the needs of the customers in should become a core strategy of any company producing and selling products in order to create customer satisfaction and sustain the business. This thesis deals with the field of quality management in the context of customer satisfaction. To show the practical applicability of quality management, this thesis is looking at how quality management is conducted in the automotive industry, as we compare the Initial Quality Study (IQS) from the market research institute J. D. Power with a survey that was internally conducted at the Saab Automobile AB. Today s business environment creates a growing need for quality management. Tougher competition leads to the demand for cost savings and higher profitability. These days the consumer can choose from a variety of similar products, which are often exchangeable in the eyes of the customer. If they are not satisfied with a product s performance, they switch to the competitors brand. Thus the focus on the customer s needs and wants in line with quality is one way of differentiation from the vast number of competitors. Satisfied customers are likely to build up a brand loyalty and this helps to ensure long term sales. The explosive growth of technology led to a higher product complexity and thus favored the quality movement. Some technical products bear threats to human safety and to the environment which resulted in an expansion of governmental quality regulations as well as warranty laws in order to protect the consumers. In addition, the product life cycles are shortening along with the technological development and producers have to be prepared for increased quality requirements from the customers I side as well as to respond to fast changing customer wants. Especially, on such a competitive market as the world market for passenger cars, the contenders are forced to reduce costs and to fulfill their customers wants and satisfy their needs to be successful. These developments show that striving for quality is and will be of importance for a company that wants to succeed in its business. This thesis is going to highlight the importance of quality management as it is proved that product quality is a major competitive success factor to create a sustainable competitive advantage Table of Contents: 1.Introduction1 1.1Research Question2 1.2Research Methodology3 1.3General Thesis Outline6 2.Quality Management8 2.1Defining Quality8 2.2Perception of Quality9 2.3History of Quality Management11 2.4The Quality Management Process14 2.5Total Quality Management15 2.5.1Defining the Concept15 2.5.2Total Quality Management: Implementation a Tools17 Function Deployment19 Sigma21 Seven Quality Control Tools 23 2.5.3A Review on Total Quality Management25 2.6Costs of Quality26 2.6.1Costs to ensure Quality27 2.6.2Costs of poor Quality28 2.7Measuring Quality31 2.7.1The ISO 9000 Quality System31 2.7.2Quality Award Programs34 2.8Quality management as a sustainable competitive advantage37 3.Customer Satisfaction39 3.1Customer Satisfaction as a Competitive Advantage40 3.2The Kano Model of Customer Satisfaction42 3.3Measuring Customer Satisfaction45 3.4Linking Customer Satisfaction to Quality47 4.The Automotive Industry49 4.1A World Market Overview49 4.2The North American Market50 4.3Saab Automobile AB51 4.3.1Company History a Background51 4.3.2Production a Sales Markets53 4.4Quality Management in the Automotive Industry54 5.J.D. Power and Associates59 5.1J. D. Power Company Overview59 5.2J.D. Power s Initial Quality Study60 5.2.1IQS Methodology62 5.2.2Summary of the J.D. Powers IQS 2003 results63 5.2.3Saab 9-3 and Competitors in the IQS 200364 5.2.4Saab 9-3 IQS 2003 Quality Performance66 5.2.5Saab 9-5 IQS 2003 Quality Performance69 5.2.6The typical Saab US-American Buyer69 6.Comparative Analysis- Saab Internal Survey versus J.D. Power IQS71 6.1Saab Internal Survey Methodology71 6.2Analysis73 6.2.1Comparison internal survey Saab 9-3 and 9-573 6.2.2Internal Survey versus IQS 2003 by Problem Category74 6.2.3Top 10 Problem Symptoms75 6.3Recommendations a Implications79 7.Conclusion82 8.Bibliography85Together with the Premium Luxury Car segment (like: Audi A8, BMW 7series, Jaguar, Lexus LS430, Mercedes-Benz S-class), the cars in Entry Luxury segment obtain the second best result in JD Powers IQS 2003 with an average PP100 ofanbsp;...

Title:Customer-Oriented Quality Management in the Automotive Industry
Author:Marit Breitfeld - 2005-02-27


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