A study of the barriers to institutionalization of Total Quality Management (TQM) in the Department of Defense acquisition process
Brown, William Andrew
Lamm, David V.
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This thesis research focused on the identification and characterization of the barriers which impede institutionalization of Total Quality Management (TQM) concepts in the Department of Defense (DoD) acquisition system. Barriers were identified and characterized by survey of public and private sector individuals knowledgeable about TQM and experienced in the DoD acquisition system. The quality philosophy described by DR. W. Edwards Deming was the primary foundation for analysis. Although many barriers were identified, the research analyzed the top six barriers identified by respondents. In order of precedence, they were: Management Willingness to Change, the Competition in Contracting Act of 1984, Congressional Oversight, DoD Acceptance and Inspection Procedures, Single Year Budgeting, and Management Mobility. Major conclusions were: (1) Institutionalization of TQM involves a cultural shift in how managers view leadership, (2) Barriers rooted in statute or regulation demand leadership's attention, (3) A prerequisite for command positions must include a profound understanding of total quality, (4) The political environment that influences the DoD acquisition system, also affects DoD's ability to institutionalize total quality, (5) Enhancement of Government customer and contractor supplier long term relationships is required if total quality is to be institutionalized within DoD.
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