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Mapping the implications and competencies for Industry 4.0 to hard and soft total quality management

Oluwayomi Kayode Babatunde (School of Construction Economics and Management, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa)

The TQM Journal

ISSN: 1754-2731

Article publication date: 1 October 2020

Issue publication date: 24 May 2021

1185

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to map the implications and competencies for Industry 4.0 to the hard and soft aspects of total quality management (TQM).

Design/methodology/approach

The author/s collected data from purposively drawn samples of early-career engineering professionals (ECEPs) using a cross-sectional survey. A total of 20 ECEPs from three small-class cohorts (2014, 2016 and 2018) participated in the survey. The author/s analyzed data using the Kruskal–Wallis test and Wilcoxon–Mann–Whitney test to establish the effect of cohort and gender on the implications and competencies for Industry 4.0. The author/s then mapped the top- and bottom-ranked implications and competencies onto the hard and soft aspects of TQM using a matrix.

Findings

Based on the cohort, significant differences p < 0.05 existed in the interests and competencies for Industry 4.0. In congruence, the 2014 cohort had the highest number of “unique” top- and bottom-ranked competencies and implications spanning the hard and soft TQM. Based on gender, nonsignificant differences p < 0.05 existed in the interests and competencies for Industry 4.0. The male and female ECEPs' “common” top-ranked implications appeared under the hard and soft TQM. All their “common” top-ranked competencies appeared under the hard TQM, while all their “common” bottom-ranked competencies appeared under the soft TQM.

Research limitations/implications

The sample size, context/discipline and perceptual data are limitations.

Practical implications

Optimizing an existing TQM framework/matrix to design Industry 4.0 TQM, advanced as TQM 4.0.

Originality/value

Perspectives of early-career professionals for TQM 4.0 implementation.

Keywords

Citation

Babatunde, O.K. (2021), "Mapping the implications and competencies for Industry 4.0 to hard and soft total quality management", The TQM Journal, Vol. 33 No. 4, pp. 896-914. https://doi.org/10.1108/TQM-07-2020-0158

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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