ارزیابی تجربی مدل برتر EFQM : ارزیابی به عنوان یک چارچوب TQM نسبت به مدل MBNQA
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|945||2009||22 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of Operations Management, Volume 27, Issue 1, January 2009, Pages 1–22
Total quality management (TQM) is an approach to management embracing both social and technical dimensions aimed at achieving excellent results, which needs to be put into practice through a specific framework. Nowadays, quality award models, such as the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA) and the European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM) Excellence Model, are used as a guide to TQM implementation by a large number of organizations. Nevertheless, there is a paucity of empirical research confirming whether these models clearly reflect the main premises of TQM. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the extent to which the EFQM Excellence Model captures the main assumptions involved in the TQM concept, that is, the distinction between technical and social TQM issues, the holistic interpretation of TQM in the firm, and the causal linkage between TQM procedures and organizational performance. Based on responses collected from managers of 446 Spanish companies by means of a structured questionnaire, we find that: (a) social and technical dimensions are embedded in the model; (b) both dimensions are intercorrelated; (c) they jointly enhance results. These findings support the EFQM Excellence Model as an operational framework for TQM, and also reinforce the results obtained in previous studies for the MBNQA, suggesting that quality award models really are TQM frameworks.
Since the 1990s, most firms have used the models underpinning quality awards, such as the Deming Prize (DP Model) in Japan, the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA) Model in the USA, and the European Quality Award (EFQM Excellence Model) in Europe, as a framework for implementing TQM initiatives. Many researchers have considered quality models as operational frameworks for TQM (e.g., Bohoris, 1995, Ghobadian and Woo, 1996, Curkovic et al., 2000, Van der Wiele et al., 2000, Yong and Wilkinson, 2001 and Lee et al., 2003). These authors consider that quality award models reproduce TQM by capturing its main constituent parts and by replicating its core ideas in clear and accessible language. Nevertheless, the empirical validation of the extent to which these models reproduce TQM is scarce, partial, and limited to some empirical studies such as Curkovic et al. (2000), who conclude that MBNQA and its criteria do capture TQM core concepts. In the context of the EFQM Excellence Model, this question remains unanswered and, therefore, more research is needed. The purpose of this paper is to understand the EFQM model as a framework for TQM, that is, to analyze whether the internal structure of the EFQM Excellence Model takes into account the basic TQM assumptions. As McAdam and Leonard (2005) point out, there is a paucity of studies on the effectiveness of quality award models for developing TQM in organizations. By improving the understanding of the internal structure of quality award models, there is an opportunity to assess the application of TQM. The paper is structured as follows. In the next section, we present a review of previous literature in order to present quality award models as TQM implementation frameworks. Based on the review of the literature, a research model to assess the capability of the EFQM Excellence Model to reproduce the TQM concept is offered in Section 3. Section 4 describes the methodology, and attention is paid to the survey procedure and the construction of measures. Finally, Sections 5 and 6 present the results of the empirical study carried out and the main conclusions and implications stemming from this research.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
This paper introduces a multidimensional structural model to explore the internal structure of the EFQM Excellence Model in order to analyze this model as an operational framework for TQM. Our model assumes that the EFQM model takes into account the social and technical dimensions of TQM and that effective TQM implementation requires a common (or balanced) approach that manages all the enabler elements in the EFQM model in order to enhance results. The empirical validation of the proposed model for a sample of Spanish firms supports that: (a) the EFQM enablers capture both the technical and social dimension of TQM; (b) both dimensions are interrelated, reflecting the existence of an overall approach to TQM represented by the enabler excellence construct in the MDSM; (c) there is a result excellence construct that underlines the level of deployment obtained by each result criteria; (d) enabler excellence has a strong positive influence on results excellence. The results obtained lead us to conclude that the EFQM Excellence Model reproduces TQM and that a firm could achieve TQM implementation by adopting the EFQM framework. They also reinforce the results obtained in previous studies for the MBNQA. Below, we extend the discussion of these results. 6.1. The EFQM Excellence Model as a TQM framework The main contribution of this research is to consider the EFQM Excellence Model as an operational framework of TQM. To be a TQM framework, the internal structure of the EFQM Excellence Model should represent: the social and technical TQM dimensions; the interrelationships between them; and their influence on results. Following previous studies (Yong and Wilkinson, 2001, Cua et al., 2001 and Rahman, 2004) we have distinguished between social (soft) and technical (hard) dimensions, represented in the enabler side of the EFQM Excellence by the Leadership and People criteria for the social dimension, and by Resources and Partnership and Processes criteria for the technical dimension. In studying the dimensionality of the EFQM Excellence Model it was found that, firstly, the variances of social and technical dimensions are statistically significant, indicating that both dimensions are present in the EFQM model. In addition, the comparison between the MDSM with the UDSM shows that social and technical dimensions are necessary in order to adequately reproduce the interrelationships within the enabler domain of the model. This finding confirms that social and technical elements are embedded in the EFQM Excellence Model, providing support to its consideration as a TQM framework. These results converge with those obtained by Curkovic et al. (2000) for the MBNQA when they conclude that MBNQA captures the major dimensions of TQM and that this quality award model is an appropriate framework for a firm to base quality improvement efforts. Secondly, to reflect the holistic approach that TQM represents, social and technical dimensions should be intercorrelated. In our model, this interrelationship is captured by the enabler excellence construct. The high values of the loading of the enabler excellence on social and technical dimensions (0.987 and 0.932, respectively) indicate that, for the sample of Spanish firms, TQM dimensions are highly interrelated. Moreover, the multidimensional coefficient of determination indicates that the enabler excellence construct explains to a high degree (almost 98%) the variation of the social and technical dimension of TQM. These results confirm previous studies in TQM literature such as Wilkinson et al. (1991) or Snape et al. (1995), when they consider that technical elements related to production issues (such as systematic measurement of processes or performance standards) should be accompanied by an emphasis on human resource activities which shape employees’ attitudes relating to quality. Likewise, the interrelationship between the social and technical dimension supports Dale (1997) assertion that the integration between the social and technical issues of TQM characterizes organizations committed to TQM, and Cua et al. (2001) empirical findings about the complementarities between the TQM technical-oriented practices and the human- and strategic-oriented practices. Thirdly, the holistic approach of TQM is also shown in the results side of the EFQM Excellence Model, as the excellence results construct explains more than 70% of the variation in results. This finding confirms the results obtained by Reiner (2002) and Calvo-Mora et al. (2005) regarding the existence of an internal logic between the result elements. Finally, we also find strong evidence of the causal relationship between the enabler and result criteria, according to the TQM assumptions. The high value of the regression coefficient (0.841) and the high proportion of variance of the result excellence explained by the enabler excellence (70%) indicate that enabler criteria must be implemented together to have an effective influence on the result criteria. This assumption coincides with a number of studies on TQM (Belohlav, 1993, Flynn et al., 1994, Nabitz and Klazinga, 1999 and Train and Williams, 2000), and reinforces the importance of adopting a holistic view in the EFQM Excellence Model by taking into account all the elements of the model. Our results extend the application of quality award models in several domains. Firstly, this study complements previous research analyzing quality award models, which have focused on both developing measurement models (and its associated constructs and scales) that accurately capture the content of quality award model criteria, and providing insights into the directions of causation among the award's categories (e.g. Meyer and Collier, 2001, Lee et al., 2003 and Badri et al., 2006). As TQM models, the causal relationships between awards criteria should be interpreted not only as empirical regularities within the specific model, but also as substantive relationships in the broader context of TQM research. Secondly, our results give support to certain authors (e.g. Eskildsen, 1998, Van der Wiele et al., 2000 and Westlund, 2001) that have pointed out that the EFQM Excellence Model constitutes an appropriate framework to guide the systematic implementation of TQM. Awards-based frameworks are seen by some authors only as a tool for organizations seeking to be recognized as leaders in the quality management field or as a self-assessment tool. However, our results support the suggestion by Ghobadian and Woo (1996) that they can be used as guidelines for TQM implementation. Finally, our research matches up with other empirically based TQM research as Flynn et al. (1994), Powell (1995), Black and Porter (1995), Ahire et al. (1996) or Dow et al. (1999) that used quality prescriptions in TQM literature to develop measurement scales to analyze TQM implementation through a set of critical factors. In this sense, the EFQM Excellence Model, as well as other quality award models such MBMQA, provide detailed information through the definition of the criteria, sub-criteria and guidance points that can be useful in the measurement of TQM implementation and in the comparison across countries based on the international acceptance of the quality award models. 6.2. Comparison with the MBNQA Model Our results rely on the EFQM Excellence Model; however, it would be of interest to compare them with those obtained in previous studies in the MBNQA. In particular, we are interested in comparing the extent to which both models share the main assumptions involved in the TQM concept, such as the following: the distinction between technical and social dimensions, the holistic interpretation of TQM, and the causal linkage between TQM procedures and performance. Firstly, the holistic interpretation of the TQM is supported by Pannirselvam and Ferguson (2001). Using the MBNQA categories, they found that the MBNQA framework reflects the relationships between the various elements needed by managers to improve organizational performance and proposed that organizations need to broaden their focus from quality control techniques and product design processes to a multifaceted view of TQM. Similarly, for a sample of Korean manufacturing firms, Lee et al. (2003) found that organizational success depends on adopting both primary (i.e., strategic planning and customer and market focus) and supportive (human resources and process management) quality programs. Moreover, they found that enhanced links between leadership and quality systems and between quality information and analysis and quality systems are required. The capability of MBNQA to capture the holistic nature of TQM is also explicitly recognized by Curkovic et al. (2000), proposing that TQM can be conceptualized as a latent factor that captures covariation among the four basic factors that describe the MBNQA framework. Secondly, although previous studies using the MBNQA have proposed alternative dimensions to capture the constituent parts of TQM, we find certain similarities with the proposal of the existence of a “social” and a “technical” dimension. For example, Pannirselvam and Ferguson (2001) found a strong relationship between leadership, human resource management, and customer focus, results that are consistent with our results for the existence of a “social” dimension. In the same vein, Terziovski and Samson (1999), using the seven categories of the MBNQA to explain operational performance, found a positive relationship between leadership, human resources and customer focus and performance and a non-significant or negative effect of the other categories. Based on these results, they conclude that: “It is interesting that the strong predictors of performance were the so-called ‘soft’ factors of leadership, human resource management and customer focus” (p. 403). Finally, the positive influence of the enabler on results criteria is also supported by most of the studies that have analyzed the MBNQA (e.g. Wilson and Collier, 2000, Flynn and Saladin, 2001, Pannirselvam and Ferguson, 2001, Ghosh et al., 2003 and Lee et al., 2003). All these authors report the existence of significant relationships among the Baldrige categories and emphasize the adequacy of the MBNQA to confirm the relationship between TQM practices and performance. 6.3. A global approach to studying the internal structure of the EFQM Excellence Model From a methodological point of view, we have adopted a global approach to analyzing the internal structure of the EFQM Excellence Model that combines the factorial and causal approaches adopted in previous studies. In our model, the interrelationships between the criteria in each domain – enabler and result – are explained by the latent factors enabler and result excellence, which measure the degree of excellence reached by an organization in the management of the enabler and result criteria respectively. The causal effect of enablers on results is summarized in a single coefficient that relates enabler excellence and result excellence. Our approach is thus in accordance with Dijkstra (1997) who asserts that there is a latent factor that underlies the model's criteria, as well as with other studies (e.g. Winn and Cameron, 1998, Wilson and Collier, 2000 and Calvo-Mora et al., 2005) which have found the existence of causal relationships between awards criteria. We therefore complement the causal and factorial approaches used in previous studies to analyze the internal structure of the EFQM Excellence Model. Within this approach, the assimilation and the commitment of a firm to the TQM core concepts will determine the behavior of the organization (i.e., the degree of excellence reached by the organization), that will be reflected in the criteria of the EFQM Excellence Model. Our global approach provides some other interesting benefits for testing the EFQM Excellence Model. The latent enabler and result excellence constructs helps to explain the way in which TQM is implemented in organizations, providing information about the degree of deployment of each enabler criterion. For example, for the sample of Spanish firms, our results indicate that the enabler excellence construct is reflected to a greater degree by the criteria related to social dimension than for the technical dimension. In the result domain, Society results is the criterion which shows a lesser relationship with the result excellence construct. This means that, although we advocate the analysis of enablers as a whole system and the consideration of the commonality between all the dimensions in producing results, there are differences between enablers and result criteria in the degree in which enabler and result excellence is manifested. Finally, although previous studies have also adopted a factorial approach to analyzing the award-based frameworks (Curkovic et al., 2000, Dijkstra, 1997 and Bou-Llusar et al., 2005), our methodological approach extends these studies by considering both a factorial and causal approach. In this sense, our study extends Dijkstra's approach, analyzing not only the enabler side of the EFQM Excellence Model but also the results domain. Curkovic et al. (2000) create a common factor named TQM that capture the relationship between four constructs of the MBNQA (TQM strategy system, TQM operations systems, TQM informational systems, TQM results). While they already include results in their TQM factor, we extend their approach by analyzing the causal effect of enablers on results in the EFQM Excellence Model. In addition, our paper enhances the study by Bou-Llusar et al. (2005) by considering both technical and social TQM dimensions in the interpretation of the enabler latent factor. 6.4. Implications Our results are also interesting for managers who are applying the EFQM Excellence Model to improve quality in their businesses and to guide the implementation of TQM, and for researchers interested in the study of the operational frameworks for TQM. As Sila and Ebrahimpour (2002) state, in the absence of a universally accepted TQM model, many firms put their faith in quality award models and use them as guidelines. The understanding of the internal structure of the EFQM Excellence Model in our study facilitates the guiding role that award-based models play in the implementation of TQM systems. This role will be promoted with a greater comprehension of the linkages between the elements that compose the models. Thus, as Eskildsen and Dahlgaard (2000) and Reiner (2002) state, knowledge about the structure of the model allows organizations to benefit fully from the self-assessment processes and to improve the management of the business. In addition, according to Rusjan (2005), the analysis of the relationships between the model criteria complements the guidelines included in the model in order to exploit the strengths and to prioritize areas for improvement in organizations. Along these lines, managers can use our conclusions to diagnose their TQM status and develop actions plans. The empirical validation of our model suggests practitioners should take on a systemic approach in the use of the EFQM Excellence Model to implement a TQM initiative. Managers must balance the social and technical practices in the context of a TQM initiative as efforts concentrated on one or a few issues would be less effective. As Curkovic et al. (2000) suggest, social and technical dimensions are needed to have a complete TQM system, and managers should focus on these both critical drivers of performance. In addition, the systemic approach implies that managers need to be committed to TQM core concepts in order to take advantage of the practices considered in the EFQM criteria. A general commitment to and acceptance of TQM principles is essential in order to benefit from the application of EFQM criteria. Otherwise managers would have only a collection of unrelated and incoherent practices. Finally, our results suggest some opportunities for developing the EFQM Excellence Model, for example by grouping the social and technical criteria. The approach we have used to operationalize EFQM criteria could also be applied to other constructs in operations management which, like TQM, could be considered as latent and multidimensional in the existing literature. 6.5. Limitations and future research As in other empirical studies, the findings and implications in this study should be interpreted with caution, due to their limitations. Firstly, in our study the model was developed and tested using the same data set. Although the model is suitable for both service and manufacturing firms, and the results obtained remain stable across sub-samples, the application of the model to other data will help to validate our results and to assess its generality in other contexts. Secondly, we use perceptual data to measure the EFQM criteria and it is worth recognizing the possibility that the perceptions of those surveyed do not provide a completely accurate view of reality. So, a logical extension would be to use multiple informants to verify perceptions. Also, the study has focused on a generic SEM, while there may be cross-country differences in this respect (Prasad and Tata, 2003, Rungtusanatham et al., 2005 and Flynn and Saladin, 2006). For example, Flynn and Saladin (2006) have reported evidence about the strong role that national culture plays in the effectiveness of the MBNQA, and the need for countries to adapt quality initiatives to their national cultures. A natural extension of this paper would be to analyze the existence of differences between countries in the EFQM Excellence Model.