The total quality management (TQM) revolution of the 1980s and recent emergence of business reengineering (RE) has shifted the focus of quality improvement efforts from individual products to processes which lead to the creation and supply of these products. The literature, however, lacks a comprehensive framework for process improvement. In this paper, we present a seven‐dimension framework of process quality. These dimensions are explained with illustrations of three important business processes: logistics, order fulfillment, and new product development. These dimensions are further used to develop a model for long‐term improvement in a business process. The model proposes a blend of breakthrough improvements (B‐I) achieved through RE and incremental improvements (I‐I) realized through TQM. Furthermore, it provides a framework for improving the quality of the process along the seven dimensions in the context of B‐I and I‐I. Finally, implications of this work for the theory and practice of business process improvements are discussed.
The International Journal of Logistics Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jan 1, 1994
Keywords: Quality improvement; Process efficiency; Distribution management; Product development
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