10.2.1 What is Total Quality Management?

Total Quality Management (TQM) is a continuous improvement process, which can also be characterized as a management philosophy. TQM implies doing business, through striving for constant improvement of a company?s quality and services. The main idea behind TQM is to ensure product and service quality, through the application of a wide range of management tasks (such as human resource management and managing the entire business process), instead of running statistical processes.1

TQM relies on cost reduction philosophy, emphasizing specifically on the reduction of waste, whilst helping suppliers provide quality products and services in order to achieve maximum customer satisfaction and gain a competitive edge in the market.2

1 Total Quality Management: A continuous improvement process 4 (1996), PHCC Educational Foundation.
2 Total Quality Management Viewed September 2009.