In the literature, numerous quality models or approaches are suggested for small and medium size enterprises (SMEs), but there is little or no evidence to support the success or otherwise of these models as they apply to SMEs. The validity of quality methods in SMEs is central to growing debate amongst SME owners/operators/managers, quality professionals, SME customers and SME stakeholders. This paper uses this debate and the lack of conclusive evidence on the application of quality methods in SMEs to provide a conceptual model. A number of dimensions (core, structural, fundamental, sustainability, integrative and external dimensions) of SMEs are integrated to form the conceptual model. Through this model, the validity of quality methods can be tested and meaningful interpretations of the application of quality methods can be used by all interest groups – such as SME owners/ operators/managers, quality professionals and other SME stakeholders.
International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Oct 1, 1999
Keywords: Quality; Integration; Methodology; Small‐to‐medium‐sized enterprises; Australia
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