Sharing data on quality performance more likely in manufacturing

ASQ study finds most companies link quality with top management


A new report on the state of quality measurement in business finds that manufacturing managers are almost three times more likely to share data on quality with their line workers than those managers in the service sector.

The ASQ’s annual Global State of Quality Research: Analysis, Trends, and Opportunities 2013 report looked at best practices in quality measurement and analysis. ASQ partnered with the American Productivity & Quality Center to create benchmark data on the current practices used by professionals in the field of quality.

According to the report, 46.4% of manufacturers report data on quality measurements to line workers daily, as compared to just 16.9% in the service sector. While 23% of service sector managers said they shared no quality data with workers, only 5% of manufacturers said they withheld quality performance information from their staff.

“The Analysis, Trends, and Opportunities’ report is a perfect continuation of the high-level view of data presented in ‘Discoveries 2013’,” said John Timmerman, chair of ASQ’s board of directors. “This new report provides further context to the data and provides comparisons based on region, industry and company size.”

Among the other insights from the ASQ report:

  • Smaller companies are more likely to share information on quality issues with their customer than large companies, but the vast majority of all companies keep their customers well-informed. The study found 85% of companies with less than $100 million in revenue work on product performance issues with their customers, while just 72.6% of companies with revenues above $10 billion.
  • Nearly 75% of the smaller companies share their quality data with customers, while only 60% of the larger companies have the same practice. Overall, two-thirds of companies are sharing quality data.
  • Looking internationally, almost 75% of quality managers report directly to top management. In the Czech Republic, 94.9% of quality managers report to the CEO, while Australia is at the bottom of the list at 58.6%. All European countries are above the 75% threshold except great Britain, which joins the United States with about two-thirds of quality managers reporting to the CEO. “Input from quality leaders and research advisors included in the new report suggest that cultural factors may dictate the comfort level associated with transparency,” ASQ said in a press release.



“Analysis, Trends, and Opportunities 2013” is the second of three reports being released as part of the ASQ Global State of Quality Research. “Analysis, Trends, and Opportunities” provides comparative data based on organization location, sector and size. The reports are based on data collected from 1,991 organizations in 22 countries.

The “Analysis, Trends, and Opportunities 2013” report and the “Discoveries 2013” report can be downloaded here.

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