What are the External Factors that affect Quality Management?

What are the External Factors that affect Quality Management?

Every organization possesses a different culture, but most of them face challenges to implement and maintain a culture of quality. This is generally due to various internal and external factors including improper process management and environmental factors respectively.

However, internal factors can be managed using a robust Enterprise Quality Management System. The real challenge is managing external factors and aligning them with your business objectives.

Why it is important to consider External Factors?

The external factors like politics, competitors, economy, customers, and weather are beyond your control but can make a huge impact on your organization’s performance and success. On the other hand, internal factors like processes, staff, culture, and financial situation can be controlled by you.

You need to understand that external factors are equally important for the stability and profitability of your company. Though you cannot control such factors or changes in them, you can establish a flexible environment to manage the unforeseen market challenges. Such a proactive approach could mean a world of difference for your organization’s productivity.

For example – If the government introduces a new taxation scheme, every company will need competent staff, new procedures, and make some changes to existing processes. The slow response to the scheme could mean a lot of challenges in the change management and potential penalties from the government for respective delays.

Major External Factors and Their Impact on Quality Management

Political Factors: These include the government actions or approaches that can influence the economy, which eventually will impact the way organizations operate regardless of the industry they belong to. This includes political stability, government policies, public investments, tax policies, local infrastructure, and national as well as international trade agreements.

Economic Factors: The economic conditions like changes in the ratio of demand and supply may directly impact organizational effectiveness and efficiency. The economic factors include inflation, changes in the exchange rate, economic growth/decline, and changes in interest rates.

Market Factors: The ever-changing market environment that reflects customer preferences. This may include competition, emerging trends, supply chain relationships, population analytics, customer needs, and demographics.

Technological Factors: It includes the impact of technological advancements and innovations evolving in the market. The most common examples here are automation, new equipment, technology awareness, etc.
Environmental Factors: It majorly covers the environmental aspects that impact the organization’s processes and customer demands. The examples here could be the change in weather, CSR initiatives, and much more.
Compliance and Regulatory Factors: It includes the changes due to the compliance standards and their latest revisions.

Every external factor is responsible to bring some change for the entire organization and all the changes need to be managed effectively and efficiently to transform the unfavorable conditions into improvement opportunities.

The question is – how to manage change in a better and improved way?

Next, you will get to know some fail-proof strategies for successful change implementation and management to make the most of your quality efforts within the specified time.

Those critical strategies are:

  1. Learn the Change Management Process
  2. Organizations need to have a streamlined change management process just like any other quality initiative they make. They may need to consider numerous factors including the culture, the work environment, work performed by their staff, and the quality initiatives already implemented in the organization.

    The most important factor that can impact quality initiatives as well as the change management process is ever-changing customer needs. This is why; it is important for the quality professionals to understand the change management process thoroughly.

    Here are some important steps that can help you manage change effectively:

    1. Identify the key goals of initiating a change
    2. Establish a team to manage the process of change
    3. Communicate well with the affected members
    4. Conduct an effectiveness review
    5. Identify and implement the required training programs

  3. Get hold of Project Management Skills
  4. Quality initiatives that foster change are no less than a project since a change requires efforts from different people belonging to different departments, who are not otherwise connected. At times, when change is initiated through some third-party vendors. There can be some differences in the approach and working methodologies. Such differences could lead to Increased costs of quality, delays to market, and most importantly, customer dissatisfaction.

    Any change process should have measurable outcomes that will reflect the effectiveness of measures and action plans implemented.

    The change and quality initiatives, as we already discussed, are opportunities for quality personnel. They need to enough relevant skills and knowledge to manage every quality initiative excellently. Only then, they will be able to ensure that they are completing the given projects within the specified time, costs, and available resources.

  5. Implement Right Training Programs for Employees
  6. In the early 1990s, the trend of training risen unexpectedly well because the quality management was gaining traction. Without training, all new initiatives cannot be managed properly.

    However, the new trends quickly became the standards. The evolutions occurred, many new paths were identified, and so much happened with over time. In the fast-paced evolutions, some of the principles seem lost. The organizations, in some or the other way, started losing customer focus, a thorough understanding of change, cultural differences. It is high time now that organizations should implement the relevant training programs to shift focus to the critical things again.

    The modern-day organizations desperately need to go back to the basics and ensure that the quality professionals involved in the change initiatives are trained with the relevant skills. This will make the employees more competent while improving the organizational effectiveness to another level.

The Bottom Line

Getting a thorough understanding of the change management and implementation process, it will become easy for every organization to face the impact of external factors on their quality management system and processes. However, the robust change management system software like Qualityze can lower the degree of complexity in change management.

This will further allow quality professionals to improve organizational productivity and effectiveness with the relevant quality initiatives.

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