Discusses the results of a pilot evaluation of the use of computer software to support the quality management system at one motor dealership in the Cowie Group. This focused particularly on its effectiveness at analysing quality non‐compliances logged by staff. This survey highlighted cultural problems, in particular staff resentment towards the quality system, the inadequacies of the software to provide management with the required information, and how the non‐compliance system encouraged hostile relationships between departments. All of these factors hindered the implementation process and meant that no one was willing to use the software. Describes how Cowie Group management sought to overcome these problems and make staff aware of the importance of following the quality system by redefining it in language which it believed staff would more readily understand ‐ that of how much quality non‐compliances cost the Cowie Group in lost profit and the staff in lost potential bonus payments. Looks briefly at attempts made by others to analyse complaints effectively and relates this experience to the Cowie Group situation. Concludes by proposing further research to investigate development of an appropriate quality cost model for the Cowie Group and whether or not this results in the desired improvement in staff attitude.
Willoughby, S. and Wilson, D. (1997), "Problems of implementation force Cowie to change its quality system", Managing Service Quality: An International Journal, Vol. 7 No. 4, pp. 185-193. https://doi.org/10.1108/09604529710173006Download as .RIS
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