Chapter 1: Introduction
1.1 Background of the study
According to (Goetsch and Davis (2014) customers are considered as a most important parts of any organization. In order to attain higher competitive advantage and increasing sales margin of company it is highly essential to keep customers satisfied. For the same, now day’s organizations are looking for better strategies through which they can keep their customers satisfied and motivated as well. Nanda (2005) has given different factors which should be provided to consumers in an appropriate ways. These factors are price, quality, support services, effective policies, purchase value, Timeliness, production efficiency, uniqueness and innovation, etc. By maintaining all these factors effectively, companies are able to attract more number of customers and maintaining their target base as well. According to Sallis (2014) quality is one of the major aspects which affects the total satisfaction level of customers in both the positive as well negative way.
In order to retain their loyal customers it is becoming highly essential for companies to strength their Total Quality Management (TQM) process. Yang (2003) stated that the whole process of TQM can be summarized as a management system for a customer focused organizations. This system can effectively involve all employees in continual improvement. By this, employee’s performance can be enhanced and they are able to perform more appropriately. For this, organizations might use various strategies, data as well as effective communication in order to integrate the quality discipline within an organization. Moreover, Total Quality Management (TQM) is a wide management approach and aimed to attain long term success in future business with a strong focus on customer’s satisfaction. This approach depends on involvement of all employees of an organization in improving culture, process, products and services. Reducing defects and wastage of raw materials are also considered as important function of TQM.
Besterfield (2011) argues that TQM views an organization as a collection process. It maintains that companies must strive to continuously improve these processes. They can easily maintain this with the help of incorporating the knowledge and experiences of workers. () has given effective process for the TQM and stated that “Do the right things, right the first time, every time. According to Caruana (2002) customer satisfaction is a most important factor in the better development and progress of construction projects. With the help of this, owners are able to develop better relationships with all the customers. In order to make their customers loyal they require being concerned about the expected influence on the future projects as well as word of mouth reputations. However, so far, customer satisfaction in the construction industry is under researched. One of the major approaches for the satisfaction level of customers in the construction has been on house building. Low level of customer’s satisfaction is one of the major research issues of the current study (Gomez, McLaughlin and Wittink, 2004). Construction industry of UK is facing this problem due to different factors such as time, cost, quality, client orientation, communication skills and response to complaints. Organizations of this industry are not capable enough to satisfy their customers on these aspects. It affects the overall performance of the company. Therefore, the current research study focuses on this research problem.
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Oakland (2014) stated that there are various ways through which overall satisfaction level of consumers can enhance. For the same, company needs to go through the market research in order to identify the market needs. On the basis of same, demands of customers can be fulfilled and organizations can keep them happy and satisfied (Customer satisfaction: a key component of TQM, 2012). TQM is a process through which overall quality and performance of employees can be improved and they are able to enhance their level of customer satisfaction. It helps in preventing mistakes from occurring and maintains the smooth processing of all the business functioning. Besterfield (2011) argues that continuous improvement is highly linked with the process of TQM and it provides effective and appropriate detail execution of all the work elements. With the help of this, continuous improvement takes place as per the capabilities, people, processes and technological impact. It highly deals with the changing process and improving results. More importantly with the help of improving capabilities organizations are able to produce better results in the future. There are mainly five areas on the basis of which capability improvement can be more focused with such as demand generation, supply generation, technology, operations and people capability.
In this regards, the present study takes place in order to determine the role of total quality management increasing customer satisfaction. For the same, construction industry Barratt Developments PLC is taken into consideration. It is one of the largest residential property development companies. This organization is situated in UK and highly focused with the quality of building homes. This company has been building quality new homes since 1958 and due to this they are able to increase the number of intended target audience. This study is highly focused with the TQM system of construction industry. For the same, systematic procedure will contain appropriate review of literature review as well as tools and techniques for the evaluation of better findings.
1.2 Research aim
Aim of the current research is “An analysis of the impact of total quality management in increasing customer satisfaction in the construction industry; a case study of Barratt Developments PLC”.
1.3 Research objectives
- To understand the major concepts of Total quality management and customer satisfaction.
- To understand the link between TQM and customer’s satisfaction in construction industry.
- To critically analyses impacts of TQM in terms of influencing satisfaction level of customers of Barratt Developments PLC.
- To suggest appropriate strategies for improving customer’s satisfaction and quality management of Barratt Developments PLC.
1.4 Research questions
- What is the major association between TQM and customer’s satisfaction in construction industry?
- How Total Quality Management can influence the customer’s satisfaction of Barratt Developments PLC?
- What are the major strategies which can be used by Barratt Developments PLC for improving customer’s satisfaction and quality management of organization?
1.5 Rationale of study
It is becoming highly essential these days to go through the effective process for maintaining customer satisfaction. There are various ways which keeps consumer satisfied and happy. In today’s highly competitive environment it is highly difficult to cope up with the changing needs and demands of customers. One of the major issues in this study is highly related with the fulfilment of those needs and demands. Construction industry is facing the problem of low customer’s satisfaction and this problem affect the financial performance of the company in negative manner. In order to keep growing with the changes and maintain higher competitive advantage it is highly essential for companies to enhance the level of customer satisfaction. For the same, market research of their firms needs to take place timely so that better interaction with consumers can also be maintained. Here, market analysis helps in meet out with these changing needs and demands. It clearly reflects that poor quality of the products and services of organizations of this industry decline the customer’s satisfaction. It is a contemporary issue of investigation because most of the organizations are investing huge amount of money in improving quality management aspects and Barratt Developments PLC is one of these organizations. But, there are no assurance about that weather this investment in quality management can increase the customer’s satisfaction or not. It is regarded as a big issue and a major problem due to which whole satisfaction level can be decreased.
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The present study clearly incorporate that there is both positive as well as negative impact between TQM and customer’s satisfaction in construction industry. It might lead to enhance the sales and profit margin of company while on the other hand; it also decreases the level of motivation among workers. For the same, construction industry is facing several challenges regarding home building quality as well as material. So, for determining the worth of this investment researcher wants to conduct this investigation which will help in getting information about the impact of total quality management on customer’s satisfaction of Barratt Developments PLC.
1.6 Significance of the study
The present topic or area of research has its huge significance for all the scholars and researchers that are interested in terms of carrying out their study in the given subject matter. It is becoming highly important these days to keep customers satisfied. However, due to the changing needs and demands of customers it is becoming more and more difficulties for business organizations to cope with the changes and the requirements of customers. In addition to this, accomplishment of this study will give clear and detail information about the impact of total quality management of customer satisfaction (McCollum, 2004). Therefore, it will be significant for the whole construction industry because by which they can improve their quality management as well as customer’s satisfaction. Improving quality and customer satisfaction has received considerable attention in recent years. Significance of the present topic can be measured with the success of any organization. Among the several key concepts, TQM is customer focused due to which all their requirements must be met first every time. Being a customer oriented and consumer centric firm, organization can acquire higher profit margin. Their whole success depends on their behaviour and how well they understand and meet out the needs of all their guests. TQM as a management system is just not the series of program that puts satisfaction before profit. It can be define as a system that comprises a set of integrated tools in order to accomplish business objectives. It is highly essential to keep customers satisfied and happy. There are mainly two types of consumers i.e. internal (employees) as well as external (end customers). Both are needed to be satisfied in terms of quality. Internal customers are employees those constitute crucial component of TQM implementation (Barraza1 and Lingham, 2008). Workers most of the time easily understands the needs of customers and identify quality problems for solutions. Moreover, satisfied staff members are the ambassadors for their respective firms and they are able to create values for organization.
The significance of customer satisfaction has been emphasized by many authors within the construction industry. So, researcher has decided to conduct an investigation on determining impact of Total Quality Management in increasing Customer Satisfaction. It will be significant for construction industry and other organizations because it will help in getting appropriate strategies for improving quality and increasing the level of customer’s satisfaction.
Further, it will be significant for PhD research scholars for conducting similar study on construction or other industries in future. Including this, it will also provide appropriate strategies to different companies for increasing customer’s satisfaction and total quality management department of organization.
1.7 Structure of the report
Chapter 1: Introduction
This is the initial section of any research where researcher can identify its aims and objectives on the basis of which whole study takes place. This chapter brief out the general concepts and terms as per the given subject matter.
Here, researcher also talks about the importance of conducting this study as well as rationale. Moreover, it can be stated that this is the base chapter of any study and it also helps in forming the basis of other chapters.
Chapter 2 Literature review
This is considered as most important chapters of any research as it helps in framing most effective findings on the basis of gathered information. In this chapter, it is highly essential to give appropriate and most relevant information about the selected topic. Moreover, it discuss about the theoretical concepts, models, knowledge etc. related to the subject. Here, the researcher will make effective contributions on framing literatures with the help of past studies made by the previous researchers. All these articles will help in understanding research problem and getting insights to resolve these problems in effective manner. It is the most effective way and process where researcher will try to identify the research gaps that exist in the literature.
Chapter 3 Research methodology
This is another most important chapter which reflects the use of various tools and techniques such as research design, philosophy, sampling, data collection, approach, ethical consideration, limitations etc. With the help of applying these tools, researcher will easily find out all the fundamental aspect of the study and frame a most suitable findings as well as conclusion.
Chapter 4 data analysis
Under this section, appropriate evaluation can take place on the basis of which primary and secondary information is derived from study. Moreover, this section helps in analysing data with the help of selected techniques in above chapters. Here the data is analysed by selection of appropriate technique of analysis depending upon the nature of the research. Under this, most suitable findings will be frame on the basis of which effective conclusion can be draw. Also read about quality management of care settings.
Chapter 5 Conclusions and recommendations
This is the last chapter of any research in which conclusion will be drawn after analysing all the knowledge and aspects regarding the given subject matter. It gives total summary of the study on the basis of which appropriate recommendations are made.
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