The Importance of Quality Management Systems, even if you’re a Small Business

quality management system

The cornerstone of a quality organisation is an effective quality management system and although many small businesses may not have large resources available to put into quality management, it can still be done effectively. Effective QMS’ are rigorous processes, which are able to continually increase the economic and quality value of products and services. They work to enhance the experience of your customers, which, for a small business, is essential when it comes to ensuring customer retention.

Quality management

What is a QMS?

A quality management system (QMS) is a formal process used to review the operations, products and services of a business – with the objective being to identify areas that may require quality improvement. Quality management systems are required in all areas of business activity, regardless of the size of the institution. A good quality management system will:

  • Reduce wastage
  • Improve process control
  • Increase market share
  • Lower costs
  • Facilitate training
  • Meet customers’ expectations
  • Raise Morale

 Keeping up with the Competition – even if it’s bigger than you are!

Any small business must do all that it can to keep up with its larger competitors. Small businesses must be oriented towards good business results in the broadest sense to have any advantage. In general, when businesses think about business results, they tend to focus solely on financial results, e.g. solvency, liquidity, revenues and profits. However, in order to achieve more sustainable financial results the business should not forget the fact that the quality of services or products they sell to their clients are what actually yields results. This is why a business must concentrate its attention, not only on financial results, but also on the quality of what they deliver, to ensure that they go on to deliver quality products and services to clients, retaining them for a longer period of time.

Quality management systems provide a structure for doing things properly, efficiently and effectively. They aid both short and long term strategies to help a business run smoothly, whatever the size of the business.

The Main Benefits of a Quality Management System

Increased Efficiency

Businesses who go through the ISO 9001 QMS certification process have the aim to maximise the efficiency and quality of their processes. As part of the process, guidelines will be put in place for all employees to follow. This means that when dealing with trouble-shooting issues, transactions or training it will be a much smoother process and less draining in terms of time or financial outlay.

Better Employee Morale

Members of staff need to be motivated and satisfied to perform well. Clear, defined roles, accountability of management, established training systems as well as a clear understanding of how their roles affect the quality and the success of the business are all part of fostering an effective employer/staff relationship. It makes good business sense to retain good staff rather than go through the process of re-hiring and re-training and it boils down to the fact that great employees are not replaceable.

International Recognition

ISO is a worldwide mark of quality management, making a business appear reliable and trustworthy.  It is the goal of many businesses to export internationally, and ISO accreditation will go a long way to establishing credence in the international business arena.

Improvement of Processes

You can learn what improvements are needed by the facts that you find through a system of documentation and analysis. This is a carefully planned and implemented procedure, which will guarantee that you make the correct choices for your business and eliminate the risks of any costly mistakes.

In short, if it comes to a decision between a larger business with no quality management system, and a small business with ISO certification, small businesses will certainly be likely to outshine their larger rivals, with ISO as a selling tool, and it will work to ensure that once any contract is won, it will likely be on a long term basis, as the steps necessary to provide a robust customer experience are already in place.

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Jenny Kilburn
Jenny Kilburn
Completed my Masters in Business Administration (MBA) in 2012 I was looking to start my own business. With over 10 years improving and streamlining business systems, I grasped an opportunity to assist a local business to improve their quality and communication processes by researching the requirements of a quality management system based upon ISO 9001 and conducted my first internal audit that resulted in 97 improvement recommendations. After a successful outcome, I was recommended again and again with glowing reviews and in February 2014, Synergos Consultancy was born. I now have the role of regularly reviewing and planning the strategic direction of the business to ensure that Synergos continues to develop, whilst at the same time, still actively working closely with some of our clients. In my spare time I love to attend the theatre to watch musicals, dance productions and plays. In 2019, I attended the theatre a whopping 24 times. I follow a plant-based diet which I absolutely love. A keen tick-tock follower, I have picked up a lot of interesting recipes. A firm favourite is Brussel sprouts and sriracha sauce baked in the oven. Delicious!
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