There are various definitions of total quality management. Nonetheless, TQM can be defined as a system of management that involves continual improvement of services at large with a major focus on customer satisfaction. This is because customers are the ultimate determiners of the quality of various products and services offered by a firm. The concept of TQM has over the years been stirred by the ever-increasing competition brought about by globalization among other factors. It is essential to appreciate the fact that firms operating within the private sector are the ones that face immense competition. This explains the reason why TQM is mainly applied within the private sector. However, firms in the public sector nowadays face competition from related firms operating within the private sector. Moreover, poorly performing public organizations risk being privatized by respective stakeholders. This has led to the adoption of total quality management among other performance improvement measures by public organizations.
Total quality management can be applied in any public institution ranging from a public education institution, health care centre, or agricultural firm. Total quality management can be classified as either process-based or product-based. Process-based TQM lays a series of steps that are carried out within an aim of improving the quality of services or goods produced. On the other hand, product-based TQM focuses on . I agree to the statement that process-based TQM is more appropriate in the public sector rather that product-based TQM. For instance, within a public hospital, managers can set an objective of reducing the mortality rate within a year. In order to achieve this, a series of steps ought to be underlined so as to ensure health improvement and consequently reduced mortality rate. Nonetheless, implementing process-based TQM in the public sector faces a number of obstacles and considerations. Firstly, there is too much bureaucracy within the public sector. Bureaucracy, also known as red tapism affects TQM since there are a lot of procedures that should be followed before implementing any change. As such, decision making consumes too much time due to the numerous steps to be followed. Secondly, employees within the public sector are usually resistance to change. This is due to fear and lack of enthusiasm to try out new ideas. Lastly, implementing processed-based TQM can be difficult within the public sector due to lack of adequate skilled manpower.
Tompkins, J. R. (2005). Organization theory and public management (Illustrated ed.). Stamford: Thomson Wadsworth.