Title: A comparison of five modern improvement approaches

Authors: Ton Van Der Wiele, Jos Van Iwaarden, Barrie G. Dale, Roger Williams

Addresses: Rotterdam School of Management (RSM), Erasmus University, Room T10-31, P.O. Box 1738, 3000 DR Rotterdam, The Netherlands. ' Erasmus University Rotterdam, Room H09-01, P.O. Box 1738, 3000 DR Rotterdam, The Netherlands. ' Manchester Business School, University of Manchester, Booth Street West, Manchester M15 6PB, UK. ' Erasmus University Rotterdam, Room T10-31, P.O. Box 1738, 3000 DR Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Abstract: This paper examines the improvement approaches of Total Quality Management (TQM), Total Productive Maintenance (TPM), Business Process Reengineering (BPR), Six Sigma and Lean, and undertakes comparative analysis in relation to the two broad types of change processes involved. The argument is made that approaches such as TQM and TPM tend to brand the desired end state, whereas BPR and Six Sigma lay more emphasis on what an organisation must do to achieve the desired end state. It is also pointed out that many of the principles, tools and techniques in each of the approaches is timeless and that all approaches are useful but need to be treated with caution. Also that the replacement improvement approach theory advocated by a few management consultants and academics are wasteful of an organisation|s resources and fails to build on the synergy of past experiences.

Keywords: total quality management; TQM; total productive maintenance; TPM; business process reengineering; BPR; six sigma; lean manufacturing; improvement; organisational change.

DOI: 10.1504/IJPQM.2006.009092

International Journal of Productivity and Quality Management, 2006 Vol.1 No.4, pp.363 - 378

Published online: 28 Feb 2006 *

Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article