General quality management
Quality management is generally considered to cover almost the entire operation of a business. In addition to customer satisfaction, the purpose of systematic quality management is to help the business meet the requirements for products or functions in its field of business, as well as to provide a sustainable basis for profitable business. While product safety requirements come from legislation, there are barely any separate requirements for quality management. However, there are guides, guidelines and standards to support systematic quality management. The most well-known of these is the international ISO 9001 standard series, which companies of all sizes can use to support their operations, regardless of the industry. The advantage of the ISO 9001 standard is its wide and well-established use and the possibility it provides to use external evaluation for certification.
The purpose of the quality management system is to create systematic and documented practices that help the business achieve its key operational objectives and expectations. In practice, a quality management system can be a management system that aims to:
- make the business operations systematic, organised and guided
- ensure the uniformity of operations and compliance with the requirements
- create coherent and predefined operating models
- develop the personnel’s skills and ensure efficient use of resources
- manage the business’s quality costs and preparations for exceptional situations
- improve the productivity of work, and
- ensure that operations meet customer expectations.
This section briefly describes the general criteria for quality management, especially from the perspective of product compliance and product safety. If you wish, you can learn more about quality management methods using different guides, instructions, or the ISO 9000 standard series.