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Article
Publication date: 1 February 2001

Brian P. Mathews, Akiko Ueno, Zulema Lopez Periera, Graca Silva, Tauno Kekal and Mikko Repka

Quality management is an essential part of an organisation’s competitive strategy. The training that underpins quality management determines the likely effectiveness of…

Abstract

Quality management is an essential part of an organisation’s competitive strategy. The training that underpins quality management determines the likely effectiveness of the quality initiatives undertaken. This article details the findings of a questionnaire survey into the training provided to support quality management. A total of 450 responses are analysed. Findings from the UK, Portugal and Finland are compared to identify differences in national practice. Training provision is definitely focused at quality staff, but even with this group training in many of the traditional quality tools is denied to one third. The area in which training is given consistently concerns awareness, systems and standards. This confirms that much of the emphasis within the sample base is on working to a quality system rather than necessarily embracing the message of quality. Training methods tend to be traditional, with little impact evident of the hi‐tech revolution. Nevertheless, there is a spread of approaches considered effective with no single approach dominating the field. While external short courses rank top in all areas, the incidence is never in excess of one‐third.

Details

The TQM Magazine, vol. 13 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0954-478X

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Article
Publication date: 4 September 2009

Akiko Ueno

Previously, a questionnaire survey was conducted and it was found that some management practices were more influential to service quality than others. The purpose of this…

Abstract

Purpose

Previously, a questionnaire survey was conducted and it was found that some management practices were more influential to service quality than others. The purpose of this paper is to identify in more detail the reasons behind the survey findings.

Design/methodology/approach

Eighteen in‐depth interviews into a range of management practices which support service quality were conducted.

Findings

It was found that there were difficulties in implementing some of the management practices due to the type of staff employed and to the nature of tasks undertaken.

Research limitations/implications

As the purpose of this research is to facilitate interpretation of the quantitative data, the investigation did not go in detail beyond mass and technological services. Hence, individual organisational characteristics, individual circumstances, or details of the service offered to customers are not considered beyond the category of either mass or technological services.

Originality/value

The paper identifies that the actual contribution from different management practices to service quality varied, and explains the reasons behind the diverse contributions in each type of service business.

Details

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, vol. 26 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-671X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 23 February 2010

Akiko Ueno

There are many features that have been regarded as having a critical role in supporting service quality. The purpose of this article is to identify those features that are…

Abstract

Purpose

There are many features that have been regarded as having a critical role in supporting service quality. The purpose of this article is to identify those features that are fundamental in supporting service quality.

Design/methodology/approach

A literature review was conducted covering total quality management (TQM), internal marketing, and the service quality literature, especially the study of service quality gaps. All of these are concerned with the search for service excellence.

Findings

From a comparative study of these three areas of the literature, it was found that there are seven common features: recruitment and selection, training, teamwork, empowerment, performance appraisals and reward, communication, and culture of the organisation. Each of them is argued to be critical for the management of service quality.

Practical limitations/implications

Although there are other factors that can influence service quality, the identification of fundamental features provides managers and academics with a valuable framework with which to start in pursuit of service quality across a variety of service businesses.

Originality/value

Although management of service quality has been regarded as notoriously difficult due to the characteristics of services, by identifying fundamental features supporting service quality, this article provides focal points for the management of service quality.

Details

Journal of Services Marketing, vol. 24 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0887-6045

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 27 June 2008

Akiko Ueno

There are many features which have been regarded as having a critical role in supporting service quality. The purpose of this research is to identify which management…

Abstract

Purpose

There are many features which have been regarded as having a critical role in supporting service quality. The purpose of this research is to identify which management practices support service quality.

Design/methodology/approach

A questionnaire survey of medium and large‐sized mass and technological services in the UK was conducted.

Findings

It was found that service quality and the management practices were all significantly associated in mass services, but this was not the case in technological services.

Research limitations/implications

Further research should consider those management features which were found to be non‐contributory to service quality in technological services.

Originality/value

This research has clarified the ranking of the management practices in terms of the contribution they have made to support service quality, and also found the differences between the two types of services.

Details

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, vol. 25 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-671X

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2001

Brian P. Mathews, Akiko Ueno, Tauno Kekäle, Mikko Repka, Zulema Lopes Pereira and Graça Silva

The patterns of adoption of quality management practices and techniques vary across national boundaries. This article presents the findings of a questionnaire survey into…

Abstract

The patterns of adoption of quality management practices and techniques vary across national boundaries. This article presents the findings of a questionnaire survey into the quality management procedures and tools adopted in three European countries, the UK, Portugal and Finland. A total of 450 responses are analysed. The main differences between the three countries are outlined with regard to factors motivating the implementation of quality systems, quality tools and techniques used, outcomes from quality management and problems encountered in providing quality training. The results are then analysed under the perspective of the probable impact of national culture. The models of national culture developed by Hofstede, Trompenaars and Earley and Erez were used for this purpose. The main conclusion is that these models can help to explain, to a great extent, much of the variation observed and constitute a basis for understanding why particular quality management approaches are adopted.

Details

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, vol. 18 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-671X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 4 December 2017

Yoshihiko Uematsu, Toshifumi Kakiuchi, Akiko Tajiri and Masaki Nakajima

The purpose of this paper is the proposal of fatigue-life-prediction curve for cast aluminum alloy A356-T6 with different casting defect sizes.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is the proposal of fatigue-life-prediction curve for cast aluminum alloy A356-T6 with different casting defect sizes.

Design/methodology/approach

Four kinds of A356-T6 fatigue specimens were sampled from the actual large-scale cast component, where the cooling rates were different. In addition, three kinds of A356 were casted under different casting conditions to simulate different defect sizes in the actual component. Subsequently, rotating bending fatigue tests were conducted using those samples. The maximum sizes of casting defects were quantitatively evaluated through microstructural observation and extreme value statistics. The fatigue limits of all samples were predicted using hardness and defect sizes based on modified Murakami’s equation.

Findings

The modified equation for fatigue limit prediction in A356-T6 was proposed. Fatigue limits were successfully predicted using the proposed equation.

Originality/value

Fatigue limit prediction method using hardness and maximum defect size was limited to steels. This paper proposed the modified method for A356-T6 aluminum alloy with lower elastic modulus. The method was valid for A356-T6 with different defect sizes.

Details

International Journal of Structural Integrity, vol. 8 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-9864

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 7 December 2017

Hirotaka Matsuoka and Akiko Arai

Abstract

Details

Sport Business in Leading Economies
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78743-564-3

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