Diffusion of a Quality Management System: A Case Study
The diffusion of a Quality Management System (QMS) to improve business performance depends upon the quality management strategy used. The aim of Eskom’s QMS strategy was to create a sustainable quality drive throughout the company to improve customer and stakeholder satisfaction. This research project’s objective is to determine how the diffusion of a QMS can improve the electricity supply industry in the Western Cape division of the electricity sector in South Africa. The key research objectives within the research study are: to assess what effect a QMS has on a sustainable long-term solution for energy supply; to assess how a QMS contributes to the establishment of world class processes and practices; to determine how a QMS affects quality culture; to determine what factors of a QMS play a role in a continual improvement process, and to determine what barriers affect a sustainable QMS implementation. The research question is: “how can the diffusion of a QMS bring improvement to the electricity supply industry?” A quantitative research methodology was employed in the study. The responses to a survey questionnaire were analysed and conclusions were drawn. The research finding is that diffusion of a QMS improves the electricity industry by positively affecting attitudes towards the challenge of securing a sustainable long-term energy supply, improving processes and practices, engendering a quality culture and contributing towards continual improvement. At the same time, certain barriers to the implementation of a sustainable QMS were identified.