The interest among practitioners and researchers in quality management and other factors that may affect quality performance reflects the understanding that a firm's output (i.e., performance) can be only as good as the quality of its inputs. However, studies of the quality management-quality performance relationship have led to mixed results regarding the existence of a positive correlation between the two. The results of a survey of 348 aerospace component manufacturers are examined here to provide new insights into factors that affect supplier quality performance. In this study, the inconsistent association between practice and performance is accounted for by considering the process view of quality management. Process management links quality management with process optimization to address both effectiveness and efficiency concerns. Performance is also affected by transaction-specific investments (asset specificity) in the buyer/supplier relationship that lead to poorer component quality and higher transaction costs. Asset specificity and organizational efficiency at implementing Total Quality Management hold great promise for resolving the mixed practice-performance findings in the quality management literature.
Journal of Operations Management – Elsevier
Published: Nov 1, 1997
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