The Baldrige award came to be in 1987 when the death of the secretary of commerce Mr. Malcolm Baldrige. The full names are Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, and the award is funded by congress through the secretary of commerce.
The sole essence of starting this award was to promote the organization to have promoted total quality management among American companies for easier ushering them to 21st century. Total quality management seeks to ensure that an organization continually improves, as well as keeps in mind the satisfaction of the customers. In short, it seeks not to achieve perfection but to continually keep improving the organization’s services and achieve the highest level of success.
The Baldrige criteria has evolved from being business oriented to accommodate other sectors of the economy. Some of these sectors include the following manufacturers, small businesses, Education, services industry, and healthcare. Other counties of the world have come to adopt it in the production since globalization has hit the world. All this can be attributing to the fact that there are achievable benefits by incorporating it especially in the business world.
Strengths and weaknesses of the Baldrige Award
There are various strengths that are so much of benefit to any organization in the world. To start with, organizations have been stimulated to improve their quality and productivity so as to gain recognition while at the same time having a competitive edge and gaining profits. The fact that there is recognition of the best performing companies when it comes to the quality means that a company will continual to strive to be among them since it promotes the image of a business organization.
The fact that the award also runs through all sectors of the economy means that they are all enticed to achieve a high efficiency and through this, the whole economy develops (Davis et al., 1999). Applicability is another strength found in Baldrige criterion. The meaning of this is that it can be applied to all organizations irrespective of their size. It is also not discriminative to the type of industry involved, whether it is service or manufacturing, all of them are included.
The same is extended to sectors of the economy, as it is applicable to both the public and private sectors of the economy. Awareness is also brought out through the existence of this award. The challenge of foreign firms is highlighted and as statistics have shown United States, national growth and competition has been low in the last two decades. There is also the impact in knowledge it offers to companies and business organization in various sectors of the economy.
Facts like the circumstance that poor quality costs consume about 20% of all the revenues in the country have been revealed through it. In addition, essential information has been unveiled to various organizations, among them are the benefits that are accrued due to having quality products. For example, having quality products means a higher productivity is achieved and that same time it minimizes the cost of producing them (Leonard, 2005).
Enhancement on the strategic planning of the quality and quality movement has also been experienced. The achievement of this is through a desired commitment to have excellence in the both manufacturing and services industry. In turn, the economy has been improved as well as the ability to compete in the global market.
It improves the cost the quality of manufactured goods. The cost of production has also been minimized by having knowledge of how to improve the productivity of workers and usage of statistics to control cost. Quality is also improved as the company incorporates measures that are able to improve the company’s competitive edge through having products of high quality (Evans, 2008).
It also ensures that the consumers demand are met, indirectly Baldrige award ensures that the demand of the consumers are considered as well as been put into perspective as it is one of the requirement necessary to remain competitive in the market. Only with the satisfaction of the consumers does an organization continue to remain in the market, and this is one of the most important things management should consider doing. The focus of the company’s strengths and weaknesses is also considered.
It is important for the organization to ensure that they maintain the strengths they have in the market and subsequently try to minimize the weaknesses that may be putting them down in their fighting of the market conquest. A plan should therefore be put in place to ensure that an organization puts the weaknesses in controllable position so that they do not hinder them in achieving their goals. There has also been improvement in the performance where a place of excellence has been achieved (Cartin,1999).
The approach has been integrated in nature and some of the results achieved include the following; the capabilities of the organization have been improved as well as the effectiveness in the organization. The delivery of the services has also improved, which has in turn resulted to success in the market place.
Though there are so many strengths that are associated in this award there has been also an experience of weaknesses in it. It requires the organization to have significant time and resources to achieve such an award. As it has always been said, any success has to be achieved with an amount of sacrifice the organization sacrifice a lot of time in trying to do research that may get them results of what they need to improve on. In addition, a good number of resources have to be included for such success to be achieved.
The resources range from qualified personnel and monetary resource. Some small companies may lack some of this resources and that is why some of them are finding nit hard to compete against big and established organization. A lot of commitment is also needed to run such a system needed to reach the greatest level of success that Baldrige talks of (Wilson,2005).
The problem may be exaggerated further by senior leaders in the organization who may have misgiving in the long-term commitment of system thinking. The fact that it may sometimes take a long time to achieve Baldrige standard means that there is dangers that seniors in the organization may not comprehend it. Finally, the complexity of the criterion is also a weakness in it. Some organization may find it hard to work with such complex measures to achieve the defined success.
A Baldrige criterion is one of the best methods a business can incorporate to achieve success in its operation. The fact that it is inclined to ensuring satisfaction among the customers ensures retaining of the customers as well as having a broader base of customers.
The good thing with it is it does not aim at achieving perfection but rather a high level of quality at whatever size the organization has since even the small organization can get to enjoy it. Establishment of Baldrige award is one of the best thoughts to have been put in someone’s mind. The fact that each company seeks recognition means that each and every company will act in a way to achieve it, and what better way to promote the economy of a country than this?
Cartin, T. J. (1999). Principles and practices of organizational performance excellence. Wisconsin: ASQ Quality Press.
Davis, M., Aquilano, N. J., & Chase, R. B. (1999). Fundamentals of operations management. Boston: Irwin, McGraw-Hill.
Evans, J. (2008). Managing for Quality and Performance Excellence. Ohio: Cengage Learning.
Leonard, D. ( 2007). The executive guide to understanding and implementing the Baldrige criteria: improve revenue and create organizational excellence. Wisconsin: ASQ Quality Press.
Wilson, J. P. (2005). Human resource development: learning & training for individuals & organizations. London: Kogan Page Publishers.