Total quality management (TQM) has had considerable success in terms of its implementation in companies. It has also been the subject of many studies in recent years. It seems, however, that there are some shortcomings in the research on this subject and in particular the lack of an adequate theoretical formulation suitable for empirical research. This study proposes and elaborates a model which examines TQM practices (orientation towards quality, TQM links with customers, TQM links with suppliers, process control, human resources) in relation to two dimensions of quality performance: quality conformity and customer satisfaction. The model is constructed on the basis of established theory building approaches and on well-known criteria of evaluation of theoretical contribution. The model is empirically tested on data gathered on a stratified random sample of manufacturing plants through the application of valid and reliable measures. The model is tested using structural equation Modelling. The results show the existence of two distinct paths of direct influences which lead, respectively, to customer satisfaction and quality conformance.
International Journal of Production Economics – Elsevier
Published: Jun 10, 1998
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