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Total Quality Management: Review of Related Literature

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According to British Standard BS 7850, TQM is defined as, “Management philosophy and company practices that aim to harness the human and material resources of an organization in the most effective way to achieve the objectives of the organization.”

Capezio & Morehouse (1993) defines TQM as follows: “TQM refers to a management process and set of disciplines that are coordinated to ensure that the organization consistently meets and exceeds customer requirements. TQM engages all divisions, departments and levels of the organization. Top management organizes all its strategy and operations around customer needs and develops a culture with high employee participation. TQM companies are focused on the systematic management of data of all processes and practices to eliminate waste and pursue continuous improvement.”

Total Quality Management focuses in achieving excellence. TQM defines the continuous improvement of the organization. It applies qualitative methods and human resources to improve and surpass customer needs (Talukder and Ghosh, 2004). TQM has integration of organizational activities to achieve the goal in serving customers. It imposes standards, achieve efficiencies, define roles of individuals within processes and the organization, reduce errors and defects by applying statistical process control, and to employ teams to plan and execute processes more efficiently. TQM addresses the issues of customer satisfaction and guidance on implementing the marketing concept (Churchill and Paul, 1994). TQM promised superior performance. TQM also offers managers supporting tools and organizational prescription (Churchill and Paul, 1994). The ‘total quality’ concept is a general philosophy of management that goes well with the management customer-perceived quality by including all key requirements that contribute not only to customer-perceived quality, but also customer satisfaction (Buzzell and Gale, 1987; Garvin, 1988; Zeithaml et al., 1990; Price and Chen, 1993).

The research titled Total Quality Management in Library and Information Sectors done by Golnessa Galyani Moghaddam and Mostafa Moballeghi in 2008 investigated libraries and information sectors by focusing on TQM implementation and the experiences of libraries adopting this method are also reviewed. It is said that there must be leadership and dedication in any respect degrees to be powerful in an agency. All organizations of human beings within an organization need to be included inside the method. Implementation of TQM is therefore not a guarantee of the highest best however is a step inside the proper direction. TQM follows a philosophy of energetic leadership engagement, stronger departmental collaboration, and all-worker schooling.

Saroja, G. (1999) stated that there are four basic principles that explain the nature of Total Quality Management: 1) Concern of the customer — what are the needs and wants of your customer? 2) Knowing the quality standards of the product and knowing the facts at all levels for continuous improvement. 3) People-based management where people must understand what to do and how to do in order to develop or progress on their work. 4) Total Quality Management is aimed at Continuous Improvement.

According to Kujalo, J. (2002) stated that TQM is one of the most important management innovations of the 20th century. It has more influence on contemporary management practice than any other management movement. He also reported that the origin of Total Quality Management can be traced back to 1949, when the union of Japanese scientist and engineers formed a committee of scholars, engineers, and government officials devoted to improve Japanese productivity and quality of life.

A study done by Tannock, J., Krasachol, L., and Ruangpermpool, S. (2002) indicated that Total Quality Management has been applied widely in most of the organizations in developed countries while ISO 9000 series standards have been the focus of quality management development in developing countries. In this study, the authors examine the progress of four Thai SMEs attempting to implement Total Quality Management over a two-year period. The study has revealed the efforts, problems, barriers and progress of the companies.

Brophy, Peter (2007) stated that libraries are facing different circumstances, in terms of providing good services and content to delivered into the users’ workflows. In order to assess performance in this changing environment, much greater emphasis will be required to be placed on qualitative methods, including ethnographic approaches, externally-moderated, reflective self-evaluation and narrative-based practice. Libraries are changing and being challenged to reinvent themselves within the workflows. If these circumstances are to be met, then innovative and robust methods also need to be developed to assess performance in this new millennium.

Kiran K., Pauziaah M., and Sossamma G. (2006) explained in their study the steps in attaining the ISO 9001-2000 quality management system certification. This article includes description of the planning, implementation and maintenance of the quality management system by the library, along with continual improvements to provide quality service to the library users. This study emphasizes on library planning and implementation of quality management system to offer a good quality service and to increase customer satisfaction.

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A case study of changing management: how we radically evolved library process from information technology impact that was presented by Sharon Hu was conducted to investigate Information Technology being applied to academic libraries as it impacts and changes the library organization and management. This paper discussed how the emerging trend for academic library management changed from information technology based from the previous researches. They analyzed the management by using SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses/Limitations, Opportunities and Threats) analysis to to explore the management environment regarding information technology. From the case study the authors summarized the emerging trends for library management and gave recommendations to change the management of academic library into mission and vision related of the academic institutes and match to the rapid development of information technology and academic world.

In a study titled Student Learning Through Ohio School Libraries, Part 1: How Effective School Libraries Help Students by Ross J. Todd and Carol C. Kuhlthau (2005), historically, libraries worldwide have contributed in different social relation, facilitating decision-making, societal well-being, the growth of democracy, and the development of a knowledgeable society (Kranich, 2001). Thirty-nine schools were selected across Ohio to participate in the study. The criteria for selection were drawn from a series of national and international guidelines for school libraries. A nine-member International Advisory Panel of school librarianship validated the criteria and their indicators. Schools were then invited to nominate (self or other) for selection in the research study, and each school provided substantive documentation addressing the criteria. Findings are almost all the student participants (99.44%, or 13,050 students) indicated that the school library and its services had helped them in their learnings in and out of school. Only 73 students out of 13,123 (0.56% of the total sample) indicated that none of the 48 statements applied to them. This would indicate that the school library plays an important role in helping most students with their learning.

Al Hijji, K.Z. and Cox, A.M. (2012) in their study investigated measurement methods that are used in various aspects of academic libraries in Oman. The research was built to explore steps of conceptualizing, collecting, analyzing data, and reporting results. Data gathered through in-depth interviews that represents different management levels. The analysis utilized content to shape the relationship between categories subjected to formulate knowledge. The result says that all libraries have used one method or more to evaluate the progress of their services and performance. These include surveys, reports, KPIs, statistics, and interviews, in addition to appraisal forms which are used for staff evaluation. Alongside with internal evaluation by librarians, an external evaluation by OAC and other international bodies took place in some libraries.

Pedramnia, S., Modiramani, P., and Ghanbarabadi, Ghavami. V. (2012) together did a research by using survey method for collecting data to measure the quality of services provided by the MUMS (Mashhad University of Medical Sciences) libraries. They also determined the member satisfaction and expectations of library services in the LibQUAL dimensions. The results of the study emphasize the importance of librarians’ specialized knowledge level in presenting appropriate service in circulation and reference sections as well as identifying strengths and weaknesses of MUMS schools and hospital libraries for improving decisions affecting the library services.

The paper written by Alasdair Paterson entitled Ahead of the game: Developing academic library staff for the 21st century focuses on the problems faced by the library personnel related in the British academic library. It talks about staff salaries, decrease and increase in funds and availability of e-formats, and the needs of increase in information technology skills and training. The discussion of this led to experiences of the university in assessing library staffs to qualify in government related awardees.They used anonymous questionnaires given to all staffs then conducted an interview in representative staffs. It has four principles of assessment, each breaking down into a number of indicators, and each of which will qualify with the award said. The overall result of the research showed level of anxiety and confusion that is expected in a kind of organization facing continuous changes. They concluded that British library like SCONUL are aware of lack of training on becoming a director.

This research presented by Sitthisomin, Junrat entitled the paper Soft Skills for University Library staff in thailand aims to evaluate and investigate the developing methods of soft skills for the university library staffs in khon kaen university. They used stratified random sampling in collecting data, and got 149 participants according to their work experience. Their Questionnaires was also made to survey the needs for developing soft skills in the current situation for library staffs of khon kaen university in seven aspects; Their communication skills, problem solving and analyzing skills, teamwork, learning capacity and information management, innovation development, ethics and professionalism, and skills in leadership. For the qualitative data they got from the interview with the library staffs it includes the sequence in developing and enhancing soft skills. The results came out to be that the behavioral level of soft skills were moderate and innovation level showed the least of behavioral level followed by communication skills, analyzing and problem solving skills and leadership skills.

In the study titled Studying the impact of total quality management in service industries by Faisal Talib and Zillur Rahman (2010), ‘Total Quality’ means that the services offered, have to be internally efficient and externally effective. It is in this context, that the question of ‘total quality’ becomes relevant in the management of manufacturing and services industries. Thus, total quality management (TQM) is the art of managing the whole to achieve excellence. The aim and philosophy of TQM is not the measurement of the quality performance but the continuing and continual improvement of quality through a process of cultural and organizational change. It is people driven and results are evident in terms of improved teamwork, company moral and organizational climate – resulting in improved productivity and profitability (Mohanty and Behera, 1996). The study begins with an in-depth literature review on the issues related to TQM, focusing on the impact of TQM implementation and its applicability in different service industries. The study also describes how TQM is being used as service tool in different sector and what are its effects and outcome. After reviewing the voluminous literature, it was classified into various categories depending on the importance, nature of literature available and future requirement for further improvement.

In a study conducted by Siregar, I., Nasution, A. A., and Sari, R.M. (2017) titled Effect of Total Quality Management (TQM) on the Quality and Productivity of Human Resources, stated that this study did a survey of instructors in public and private universities in North Sumatra to obtain the factors that affect quality of human resources and productivity of human resources. Human resources quality is viewed by the elements of TQM. Total Quality Management (TQM) is based on; all organization staff should collaborate with each other for purposes of producing high quality products and services in order to meet customers’ demands. Total Quality Management consists of several quality instruments and techniques, in addition to various values and beliefs that all staff within the same organization shares.

This research is a correlation descriptive research, a study investigating the presence or absence of a relationship between exogenous variables influences the endogenous variables. This study were look at the influence of each factor on the productivity of human resources were been formulated in associative hypothesis partially or simultaneously. The population is all instructors in the public education institutions and one private education institution in North Sumatra. The sample is based on probability sampling which is simple random sampling with the sample size of 43 peoples. This study used an enclosed questionnaire with the research scale using a Likert scale. The instrument (questionnaire) tested the validity and reliability by distributing questionnaires to 30 respondents that were chosen based on the rule of thumb. The findings suggest, organization staff should work together to produce high quality products and services in order to meet customers’ demands. Leadership and reward and recognition have a direct and indirect influence on the productivity of human resources. Communication, training and education, and measurement have an indirect influence on human resources productivity. In the education institutions there are no significant influence between the support structures on the quality of human resources.

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Total Quality Management: Review of Related Literature. (2022, September 27). Edubirdie. Retrieved September 22, 2023, from
“Total Quality Management: Review of Related Literature.” Edubirdie, 27 Sept. 2022,
Total Quality Management: Review of Related Literature. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 22 Sept. 2023].
Total Quality Management: Review of Related Literature [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Sept 27 [cited 2023 Sept 22]. Available from:
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