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Quality and the performance management are the two important areas that businesses are required to fulfill in order to achieve success in their business operations. It is highly essential for businesses that they should look for achieving higher level of quality within their business process so that higher quality products can be designed and they can be utilized in satisfying their customers. However, the quality aspect is not the only aspect that requires attention by businesses, but it is also essential that there should be the timely delivery of the finished products and services to the final consumers. This is mainly because timely delivery would ensure them the most appropriate use of such products as ordered by them with the organization. In ensuring the timely development of products and services, the role of performance management is crucial and management should therefore aim at ensuring the maintenance of highly efficient performance management system at their workplaces. Apart from the factors of quality and time, another crucial factor from the point of view of the performance of the organization is mainly to perform the development of product within budget, as it would only become profitable when the product development process is accomplished within the budget as assigned to it (Brown, Gatian & Hicks, J. O., 1995).
Purpose of this Assignment Task: The main purpose of this assignment task has been to analyze on the importance to maintain quality levels and at the same time, ensuring the timely development of finished products and services. The focus is mainly on the given case scenario whereby the timely delivery of a contractual order has although been performed, but at a loss. As a result, this assignment task emphasizes on initiating and leading a process improvement project so that the development of a more competitive design and production scheme can be achieve for other potential consumers.
Overview of Organization, Product, Clients, and Other Information
An analysis of the organisation indicates that it is mainly a fast food retail chain store that has its operation throughout the world. The company specialises in delivering high quality fast food items including burgers, pizza, noodles etc at reasonable price to its customers. The speciality with this organisation is that it can provide a range of continental dishes to its customers on demand, but the core products as included within its service offerings include the burger and pizza and a range of beverages including cold drinks, tea and coffee and ice-creams. In terms of clients of the given fast food stores, it mainly includes the students and young age group people that wish to spend some time with their friends, companions and colleagues. The fast food retail chain store has contractual clients as well and they provides orders to be served on big occasions such as small parties with families, parties on specific occasions such as birthday, anniversaries etc.
Apart from the students and contractual clients, the fast food chain store also accounts for serving corporate whereby it delivers the products to customer’s premises. The home delivery services are aimed at satisfying the fast food orders as placed by corporate. Thus, the products of the business are aimed at catering to the needs of both the direct consumer visiting its premises and also the corporate clients as well. The other information in relation to the given fast food provider is that it takes contractual orders in serving its fast food items on special occasions and it also provides customised services as per the demands of its client for the fast food items. The business has a prominent reputation in the market as the quality provider of fast food items to its customers. Thus, there are various ranges of customers of the company, and the fast food retail chain stores account for serving the needs and preferences of customers.
Client’s Perspective on Different Dimensions of Quality as Related to Fast Food Products
The main focus of businesses should remain on satisfying the needs and requirements of their customers and their business strategies should therefore be devised accordingly that aims at satisfying the expectations of their customers. However, in ensuring the maximum possible satisfaction of customers, it is highly essential that the client’s perspective should be known in advance regarding the products and services or it can be the clients’ expectations from it. This will enable the firms in devising their strategies accordingly in a manner that ensures their maximum possible satisfaction.
As in respect to the given case of the fast food retail chain store, the expectations of the client from its services would be high quality and fresh food items, product delivery on the go, reasonable prices and the most important is the availability of products all the time. Clients also have the expectations in terms of customised delivery of fast food items as per the orders made by them. Although these are the expectations of customers from the products and services as offered by a fast food retail chain store, yet in terms of quality, customers are highly concerned over it because the direct impact of such products in on their health conditions (Laura and Rutherfoord, 2001).
This implies that the quality dimensions are very specific in relation to the fast food products and services within the customers. The customer perspective would imply that customer would expect better quality of ingredients by the service provider while cooking fast food products as the use of better quality ingredients would enhance the overall quality of final product. Another major dimension is related to the cleanliness as there should be sufficient level of cleanliness that should be ensured in achieving higher quality over the finished products from the point of view of customers. Finally, the speed factor determines the overall quality of the service provider (Donaldson and Preston, 1995).
Specification of Client’s Needs and Wants
The expectations of customers vary significantly as different customers have different level of expectations and wants from a similar product. As for instance, majority of the clients are highly conscious with the quality factor as they expects high quality fast food items to be delivered by the service provider, however some other customers looks for variety aspects, as they prefers fast food restaurants that offers them variety of products to select from. Apart from this, the clients’ expectations from a fast food chain store also include the fast service delivery providers with good ambience being provided. As majority of the customers are mainly students and young age group people, they expects to feed themselves and some also looks for spending their time while having fast food items at the chain stores.
The corporate clients have the expectations that they are served with fast food products at their intervals during lunch and that too in terms of hot delivery of products. Apart from this, the contractual clients have also the specific needs and wants, as they looks for availing the products of fast food retail chain stores in bulk and they therefore have different level of expectations from its products and services. This indicates that the expectations of clients differ from customers to customers and as such, businesses needed to be highly customised in order to satisfy the needs of each type of its clients. This is mainly because a highly satisfied customer is likely to contribute towards the organisation’s growth in a positive manner (Hitt & Brynjolfsson, 1996).
Process in Identifying the Causes for Delivering Product Over-Budget
As the given casse scenario indicates that the contractual project as undertaken by the fast food chain store has been delivered by it on time, but it was actually over budget. This indicates that the budget allocated in performing the contractual delivery of assignment exceeded significantly which has resulted into a loss to organisation. However, it is essential to enquire about the process adopted in identifying the cause for delivering the product over budget. The process that has been considered is indicated as follows:
- An examination of the contract that has been performed with the clients regarding the delivering of products including its specification, quantity, time and prices has been performed.
- This is followed by an evaluation of the budget allocated in performing the task of satisfying clients’ requirements.
- An examination of the approach adapted in performing such contract by the organisation’s employees is performed including the processes that are planned to follow and the ways in which they are implemented.
- An examination of any kinds of contingencies that were suffered during the process of delivering customer contracts such as labour shortages, resources shortages, or any other material gets rotten, were performed to examine the causes of detail.
- An analysis is also performed with respect to the time undertaken by the organisation’s employees in performing core major processes in delivering customer order. It analyses the time taken in carrying out major processes including the ones that have consumer higher time.
- Finally, the allocation of budget to each major processes in analysed including the actual amount spent on it, and the employees responsible for carrying out to them have been surveyed to identify the actual reason causing the delivering of product over-budget (Porter, 2001).
This process has been followed in identifying the reasons for delivering the product over-budget and it has been quite crucial from the point of view of identifying the measures needed in ensuring that similar kinds of situations never occur again in future.
System for Better Capturing Customer Requirements
Customer requirements must be clarified in advance for the purpose of delivering high quality services to them. However, it is highly essential that adequate details should be collected so that there would not be any mismatch with the products and services at the final moments. In respect to the fast food retail chain stores, the demand of customers is highly specific and this necessitates the consideration of adequate provision to maintain details regarding the requirements. There are various ways through which the customer orders can be stored in a positive manner including the details of their specification. The better way of recording customer requests leads to lower overall chances of doing rework (Brown, Gatian & Hicks, 1995).
However, in the given case of products running over budget at the fast food retail chain stores, it is not because of the mismatch between the customer requirements or specification as provided by them, rather it is mainly because of loopholes on the part of existing employees responsible for producing the required customer orders. However, the customer requirements can be better stored in an efficient manner by way of considering the appropriate information systems in place. The information system can be utilised whereby a separate directory can be maintained with respect to the customer requirements. This system will require the contractual customers to fill up a form whereby they need to enter the details of their orders, and they will then be entered over the information system and a print out will finally be provided to the customers so that the chances of errors in the process are minimal (Barua, Kriebel & Mukhopadhyay, 1995).
In this way, the information systems can be utilised with a view to record the customer requirements so that there are lower overall chances of rework to the process, and the customers would be satisfied with the specifications as provided by them. Although in the given case, it is not because of any such misplacement of customer orders, rather it is because of some confusion within the organisational employees that has resulted into the delivery of products running over-budget. However, such information systems can be utilised in assisting the organisational employees in better delivering customer requirements. This is mainly in the sense that a printout copy of the customer orders with detail specification of their orders will be provided to the employees responsible for delivering the final consumers, and this will ensure the better overall preparation of fast food items as per the customer specification (Carysforth and Neild, 2000).
Thus, the application of information system will benefit the employees because it will enable them in identifying the processes that needs to be carried out including the areas where higher emphasis is required. In this way, the information system could be utilised in dealing with the customer requirements in a better way.
QFD House of Quality
QFD house of quality is a diagram that is mainly utilised for the purpose of defining the relationship between customer desires and the firm/product capabilities. This is an important diagram that explains about the customer requirements and the ways in which the organisation is going to meet out their requirements. It is similar to that of a house and the correlation matrix is at the roof, customer wants and the product features are included within the main parts and the competitor evaluation at the porch. The main belief as per this house of quality is that the designing of products should be performed in order to reflect customer desires and tastes (Cohen, 1995). This implies that the matrix is aimed at satisfying the needs and requirements of customers through including their expectations in it.
A QFD house of department has been developed above and it indicates about the priority areas and the areas of conflicts in the service delivery process to the final consumers. The analysis above has indicated that the priority areas are mainly the fulfilment of consumer demands on time, and ensuring that the contractual order as undertaken should be completed on time. However, in respect to these priority areas, the conflict of interests as identified is the inability to meet out the demands of consumers and this might be because of the inefficiency on the part of the employees of the fast food retail chain stores.
Cost Categories as Related to the Quality of the Products
The analysis above indicates that the main products as offered by the fast food retail chain store is mainly a range of fast food items and beverages and these products as offered by the company are directly related to the certain major cost categories. As for instance, the consumption of fast foods is directly related to a range of health related problems and this has been the major cost factor associated with their consumption. The quality of such fast food items therefore needs to be of superior quality so that the cost related factor would be minimum. Apart from this cost category as related to the product quality at the given fast food retail chain store, there are certain other cost categories that are further associated to it. As for instance, it is mainly the negative reputation of the firm from not meeting out the contractual obligations of the customers on time and this may therefore adversely impacts the overall reputation of the firm. The task of building positive brand requires huge level of efforts and cost to be incurred by the company, and the given case of not performing the contractual obligations of customers therefore requires the consideration of additional costs being incurred by the company. In further achieving the quality of its products and services offerings, it is highly essential that additional costs need to be incurred by the company for better results.
Input, Quality, Output and Outcome Performance Measures in Meeting Future Obligations
The timely meet out of the future obligations is highly essential for the organisation and this requires the consideration of certain major input, quality, output and the outcome performance measures that needs to be considered. As for instance, the input as needed to be considered in ensuring the timely meet out of future obligations include the consideration of 100% efforts on the part of each and every employee, and there should be strict penalty system that should be enforced in achieving higher quality levels. Apart from this, another major input as needed is mainly to make it sure that there should be a provision for additional employees that should be considered by the organisation because this would ensure the meet out of any such contingencies in the form of delays in an efficient manner. This would although enhance the budget to a certain extent, but it would be an efficient strategy in timely meeting out the customer needs.
In ensuring the maintenance of sufficient quality levels, it is highly essential that there should be adequate emphasis that should be played over recruiting quality staffs that can meet out the organisational requirements in a positive manner. The quality factor can be positively accomplished through making arrangements for the employees that are expert in producing fast food items. The output as a result of making the provision for additional employees and highly quality fast food preparers would result into the better overall satisfaction of customers from the offerings as made by the organisation. The outcome performance measure in meeting out the future organisational need therefore implies that there should be the additional consideration of important resources and at the same time, information systems should also be positively utilised in tracking the progress as made by organisation. This would ensure the efficient accomplishment of the desired outcomes from the products and services as offered by the organisation (Wetherly and Otter, 2008).
In this assignment task, a critical analysis of my organisation i.e. fast food retail chain store has been performed with respect to a contractual obligation that has been although accomplished on time, but it is performed over-budgetary mark. The conduct of the analysis revealed that the timely and within cost delivery of the final products to the customers is an essential prerequisite for a fast food retail chain store, and at the same time, they need to maintain good quality of the products and services as being offered. As in the given case, it is recommended that the fast food retail chain store can achieve the timely meet out of customer satisfaction by way of making provision for highly quality and talented staff, and also through considering sufficient number of additional staffs that could be utilised in meeting out any kinds of emergencies during the process. Apart from this, there should also be higher level of use of information technology systems in performing the monitoring or tracking of progress within such system.
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