5. The 4 Q model and the quality cycle

It is rare for those who walk well to fall
(Leonardo Da Vinci: Codex Atlanticus)

A model for measuring quality in organizations that provide services could be the 4 Q model (inspired by the 5 Ps model for quality control), where each Q can be seen as a main process that manages some aspects of quality. The 4 processes can be represented graphically by four subsets that are related to each other forming what we could call the Quality cycle. In the event that the quality to be measured is applied to an organizational structure, 2 further processes should be added, seen as support processes:

  • Resource Management
  • Communication Management.    

 The model is shown in the following figure:

quality

  1. PLANNED QUALITY (Qpia)

strategic planning

For this process the reference is the organization. Among the inputs to the process we have the analyzes that the organization should carry out to identify the potential expectations of the parties interested in quality but also (after the closure of the first cycle) the results of the quality measurement process. The output of the process is the planning of all activities that affect quality.

At this stage it is necessary for the organization to clearly define:

  • activities and elements that characterize the organization (who we are and what we offer)
  • organization charts and job descriptions (who does what)
  • goals you want to achieve (where we want to go)

Also in this phase, after the closure of the first cycle, the following aspects should also be analyzed:

  • evaluation of previously defined objectives and definition of new objectives
  • possible corrections of their own strategies and improvement actions 
  1. QUALITY DELIVERED (Qero)

Skills

For this process the reference is the organization. Among the elements entering the process we have the specifications identified in the planning phase. The output of the process is the visible result of the service delivery.

In this phase it is necessary for the organization to clearly define adequate control parameters to check that the activities that make up the service are performed correctly or that the results fall within the pre-established limits (standard) and with a view to achieving the objectives defined.

  1. PERCEIVED QUALITY (Qper)

perception01

For this process the reference are the interested parties. The main input is the service itself. The output of the process is the detection of the quality that the interested parties believe they have perceived.

  1. MEASURED QUALITY (Qmis)

monitoring

For this process the reference is the organization. The input elements are the data coming from the detection of the perceived quality but also the data collected during the actual provision of the service. The survey may take place through monitoring forms and survey questionnaires of the quality perceived by all the interested parties.  

SUPPORT PROCESSES

RESOURCES: Support process related to resource management (Human and structural)

"ENSURING THE RIGHT PEOPLE IN THE RIGHT PLACE"

An organization that aims at quality must have personnel qualitatively and quantitatively adequate for the activities carried out. The human resources involved in the management of the service must be competent, adequately trained and highly motivated.

 "USE ADEQUATE EQUIPMENT IN ADEQUATE ENVIRONMENTS"

The Organization must have equipment and environments that are qualitatively and quantitatively adequate for the activities carried out. The equipment must be maintained and kept efficient, guaranteeing the absence of risks for users

 

COMMUNICATION: Support process relating to communication methods aimed at all interested parties. This process can be divided into sub-processes related to internal and external communication.

Internal communication: The organization must ensure that the information necessary for the correct performance of the service is provided to all internal human resources involved.

External communication: The organization must guarantee correct and extensive information on the service provided, the methods of accessing it and any other information useful to all interested parties

 

Ignazio Caloggero

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Tourism Quality and Cultural Heritage

The 4 Q model and the quality cycle

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