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This is one of the first papers trying to analyse the motives and benefits of QMS/ISO implementation in Indian SMEs. A survey work of 220 certified Indian SMEs is carried out and presented in the paper. The relationships between expected and perceived benefits were analysed through statistical analysis. This paper highlights the results of this survey, which concluded that QMS/ISO certified companies were more concerned by internal reasons like improving processes/productivity or products/services than by external reasons like pressure from customers or imitation of competitors. In addition, the paper pointed out that the QMS implementation process had generated more internal benefits than external ones. The findings of the research work also indicate that the SME firms will sustain their quality efforts as continuous improvement. This paper is structured as: first, we review the previous literature on motives and benefits of QMS/ISO implementation and identified research gaps. Next, paper present the research methodology followed by the survey analysis and results. After discussing the main findings of the empirical research, we finally conclude with useful recommendations for practitioners.
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Int. J. Productivity and Quality Management, Vol. 6, No. 3, 2010 379
Copyright © 2010 Inderscience Enterprises Ltd.
An empirical study of the motives and benefits of
QMS/ISO implementation among Indian SMEs
Anand K. Bewoor*
Mechanical Engineering Dept.,
Vishwakarama Institute of Information Tech.,
Kondhwa (Bk), Pune 411048, Maharashtra, India
Fax: +91 (020) 26932500
E-mail: bewooranand@yahoo.com
E-mail: anandbewoor@rediffmail.com
*Corresponding author
Maruti S. Pawar
Brahmdevdada Mane Institute of Technology,
Solapur University,
Solapur Maharashtra, India
Fax : 0217-2283466
E-mail: drmspbmit@rediffmail.com
Abstract: This is one of the first papers trying to analyse the motives and
benefits of QMS/ISO implementation in Indian SMEs. A survey work of 220
certified Indian SMEs is carried out and presented in the paper. The
relationships between expected and perceived benefits were analysed through
statistical analysis. This paper highlights the results of this survey, which
concluded that, QMS/ISO certified companies were more concerned by internal
reasons like improving processes/productivity or products/services than by
external reasons like pressure from customers or imitation of competitors. In
addition, the paper pointed out that the QMS implementation process had
generated more internal benefits than external ones. The findings of the
research work also indicate that the SME firms will sustain their quality efforts
as continuous improvement. This paper is structured as: first, we review the
previous literature on motives and benefits of QMS/ISO implementation and
identified research gaps. Next, paper present the research methodology
followed by the survey analysis and results. After discussing the main findings
of the empirical research, we finally conclude with useful recommendations for
practitioners.
Keywords: QMS/ISO implementation; motives and benefits; Indian SMEs;
India.
Reference to this paper should be made as follows: Bewoor, A.K. and
Pawar, M.S. (2010) ‘An empirical study of the motives and benefits of
QMS/ISO implementation among Indian SMEs’, Int. J. Productivity and
Quality Management, Vol. 6, No. 3, pp.379-406.
Biographical notes: Anand Bewoor is presently working as an Assistant
Professor in Mechanical Engineering Department, V.I.I.T., Pune University
Pune, India. He has acquired a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering
and a Master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering, with specialisation in
380 A.K. Bewoor and M.S. Pawar
production engineering. Currently, he is pursuing his PhD. Earlier, he has
worked as a Vendor Development and Quality Control Engineer in industries.
He is the author of various books, including Quality Control, Metrology and
Measurements, Production Planning and Control, Industrial Engineering and
Management. He has published papers in various journals and presented
several technical/research papers at national and international conferences. He
is member of various professional bodies.
M.S. Pawar is currently working as a Professor in Mechanical Engineering and
the Vice-Principal at B.M. Institute of Technology, Solapur (India). He
graduated and post graduated in Mechanical Engineering. He has a PhD in
Production Engineering. He has, to his credit, 24 research papers published in
international and national journals as well as conferences. His total contribution
in academics as well in industry is more than 32 years. He is a Life Member of
technical society bodies. He has won many awards and medals in his carrier,
notably, Most Brilliant Master Award. He is a recognised Post-Graduate
Teacher and Research Supervisor in Mechanical Engineering.
1 Introduction
Quality has been identified as one of the competitive strategies for improving business
performance in a global market. Organisations all over the world are using different
techniques for quality improvement. QMS/ISO 9000 can be used, as a source of
competitive advantage, with the potential to stimulate the company in moving towards
total quality management (TQM). Over the last 15 years, a notable growth of
organisations registering to the ISO 9000 standard has been recorded. Over 951,486
certificates have been issued in 175 countries (http://www.iso.org, Dec. 2007). While
initial growth was in the UK, more recent interest being shown by organisations in the
USA, the Asian region and other European countries means that the spread of ISO 9000
registration is likely to continue (Singh, 2008). The liberalisation initiatives of the
Government of India in the beginning of the 1990s have resulted in a phenomenal rise in
the number of organisations implementing ISO standards as QMS, regardless of their
products or size (large/medium/small/micro).
With the advent of globalisation, quality management systems (QMS) has become the
key tool for engineering industries for product reliability and customer satisfaction.
QMS/ISO certification demonstrates the capability of an industry to control the processes
that determine the acceptability of the product or service being produced and sold. Since,
the issuance of ISO 9000 series in 1987 by the International Organisation for
Standardisation (ISO), the standards have been widely accepted by many organisations
across all industries, regardless of their size or products (Lin and Jang, 2008; Magd,
2008; Naser et al., 2004; Oke and Owaba, 2007). They serve as guidelines for any
organisation willing to establish or improve its quality management system. According to
Luciana (2007) ISO based QMS can allows us to manage the effectiveness, reliability and
accountability of continuous, incremental and tangible improvements. Usually, when a
company obtains the QMS/ISO certificate, its business partners and/or entire supply
chain will be more confident in its QMS (Stevenson and Barnes, 2001; Sroufe and
Curkovic, 2008).
An empirical study of the motives and benefits of QMS/ISO implementation 381
Even though there is phenomenal rise in the number of SMEs implementing
QMS/ISO, it is needed to know whether the benefits as desired are derived from such
implementation. To know the benefits of QMS/ISO as against the motive of
implementation, this study is undertaken and reported in this paper. Furthermore, this
study also analyses precisely the relationship between motives and benefits of QMS/ISO
implementation in Indian SMEs with the aim of building theory.
2 Literature review
The wide acceptance of ISO 9000 has led to considerable interest in the research
literature. In this study a number of recent publications related to the motives and benefits
of ISO 9000 quality management system implementation were reviewed. Some of the
researchers had investigated the ‘pros’ and ‘cons’ of the certification process (Nair, 2006;
Stevenson and Barnes, 2001) or how the ISO 9000 helped companies in their TQM
journey. Many authors (Prajogo, 2009; Costa et al., 2009; Magd and Curry, 2003;
Gotzamani and Tsiotras, 2001; Sun, 1999) have compared the implementation of ISO
9000/1994 and ISO 9001/2000 as representing two different efforts to implement TQM
practices. Sroufe and Curkovic (2008) had examined the effect of ISO implementation on
supply chain. Some scholars had studied the financial performances of the certified firms
(Chow-Chua et al., 2003; Ha¨versjo¨, 2000; Tsekouras et al., 2002; Wayhan et al., 2002).
Some are conflicting findings on the bottom-line effects of ISO 9000 certification and the
practices which lead to successful implementation (Briscoe et al., 2005; Mei et al., 2008).
Moreover, some other scholars had provided an interesting classification of the research
on QMS/ISO 9000 implementations (Van Der Wiele et al., 2005; Bewoor and Pawar,
2007). They identified six major issues, viz.:
1 the relationship between ISO 9000 and TQM
2 perceptions about the benefits of ISO 9000
3 the relationship between ISO 9000 and organisational improvement
4 the usefulness of ISO 9000 for different sizes and types of organisations
5 the long-term effects of ISO 9000
6 the motivation to implement ISO 9000.
Similar to above mentioned studies from literature, many more studies are available in
the literature. All the relevant information collected from the literature studies is
organised and reported below as:
a QMS/ISO implementation and SME
b QMS/ISO implementation in Indian industries
c identifying motives for QMS/ISO implementation
d identifying benefits from QMS/ISO implementation.
The reviews of these aspects are reported below.
382 A.K. Bewoor and M.S. Pawar
2.1 QMS/ISO implementation and SME
Quality is essential to customer satisfaction and competitive success. This reality is true
for companies of all sizes (Tan et al., 2000; Kumar et al., 1999; Deming, 1986).
However, very little emphasis has been directed toward the SME (Bewoor and Pawar,
2007; Briscoe et al., 2005; Lee and Palmer, 1999; Van Der Wiele and Brown, 1997), as
most of the studies have focused on large manufacturing businesses (Rahman, 2001).
As SMEs play a dominant role in most developed or developing countries, there have
been a some of the studies concerning quality management in SMEs (for example, Fening
et al., 2008; Bayati and Taghavi, 2007; Camgoz-Akdag, 2007; Demirbag et al., 2006;
Lewis et al., 2006; Gotzamani, 2004; Temtime and Solomon, 2002; Rahman, 2001;
Ghobadian and Gallear, 1996). Literature review on the effect of quality standards’
implementation in SMEs proves that SMEs can get benefit more from ISO 9000
certification than the larger enterprises (Gotzamani, 2004). For example, Huarng (1998)
prove that SMEs improve their documentation system of quality processes and
performance assessment more than largest enterprises do and as a result, they stand to
benefit more from ISO 9000 registration in areas like product reliability and performance,
defect rates, manufacturing process performance and variance, and new product
introduction time. Another important finding in the literature is that the most important
factor for the successful implementation of the ISO 9000 standards is the company’s
basic attitude to the system when the implementation starts. In other words, the degree to
which a company seeks certification in order to improve quality and organisational
performance and not simply in order to satisfy external pressure (Gustafsson et al., 2001;
Gotzamani and Tsiotras, 2002). Also, research has proved that other important factors for
the successful implementation of ISO 9000 standards in SMEs are: the employees’
commitment and internal communication, the way the companies are using external help,
the degree of education prior to certification, the development of fairly detailed plans for
the implementation, and the documentation being adapted to the organisation and not to
the standard (Gustafsson et al., 2001).
In addition, on one hand, QMS/ISO certification has gained a reputation for being
resource intensive and at least somewhat difficult to implement (Lee and Palmer, 1999;
Simmons and White, 1999; Van Der Wiele and Brown, 1997) and on other hand, many
companies have failed to achieve the quality and competitive benefits sought through ISO
implementation (Lima et al., 2000). McTeer and Dale (1994) claim similar conclusion as;
SMEs seem to be more concerned with quality than large enterprises, but at the same
time they cannot easily conform to a formal quality system like ISO 9000 standards or
TQM. Thus, while large companies are more likely to use ISO 9000 as a precursor to
TQM, SMEs tend to be satisfied with their achievements from ISO 9000 certification and
they don’t feel the need to move further. Even more, different viewpoint on the same
issues by Nwankwo (2000) with argument that the long-term ISO 9000 benefits for small
companies will not be very important, mainly because of their poor, passive motives for
certification and a lack of true awareness about the standards and their potential. Most
SMEs are still implementing quality systems so as to remain suppliers to large customer
companies, and they have been slow to adopt quality improvements in a systematic way,
mainly because of limited financial resources (Lee and Oakes, 1995; Noci, 1996).Other
important obstacles for the adoption of a formal QM programme by SMEs are considered
to be the emphasis on short term profitability, lack of resources, lack of business planning
and vision, misinterpretation of QM practices (Temtime and Solomon, 2002), lack of
An empirical study of the motives and benefits of QMS/ISO implementation 383
strategic orientation, lack of necessary infrastructure for TQM implementation (Lee and
Oakes, 1995), lack of managerial and technical expertise (Ghobadian and Gallear, 1996)
and insufficient external assistance (Lo and Humphreys, 2000). They do not have the
wherewithal to dedicate the time and money to resource-intensive programs that can be
hard to implement and may not deliver sought-after benefits (Zaramdini, 2007). In India,
the number of QMS/ISO certification is increasing. Brief review of research work related
to QMS/ISO implementation in Indian industries is discussed in next section.
2.2 QMS/ISO implementation in Indian SMEs
In today’s completive and quality conscious market, acquiring ISO certification has
become a critical factor for the Indian companies for their existence (Sachdeva et al.,
2007). In India, very few scholars have attempted to examine empirically the impact of
IS0 9000 certification on the prevailing quality management practices and quality results.
For example, empirical studies done by Rao et al. (1997) and Mahadevappa and
Kotreshwar (2004) had identified critical success factors for successful QMS
implementation. Gupta (2000) experienced significant differences between all four areas
(viz. technology management, causes of poor quality, participation in the quality
improvement programs and quality control techniques used) of non-ISO and ISO
certified organisations in India.
Acharya and Ray (2000) had identified, continuous improvement, global deployment,
install a formal system as important motives for ISO certification and concluded that
QMS is responsible for better understanding of processes and responsibilities and
improvement in communication. Similarly, Barua and Dhar (2006) had identified,
improving internal efficiency and productivity, base for wider quality improvement
process, to improve customer service as the major motives behind ISO certification by
manufacturing and service industries in Assam state of India.
An empirical study by Bhat and Jagadeesh (2006) in Karnataka state of India had
concluded that, surveyed ISO certified companies could improve internal benefits like
improvement in documentation and efficiency of the quality system. Sachdeva et al.
(2007) had considered four major areas for measuring organisational performance viz.
quality and cost of quality, external quality, time performance and purchasing. Their
study had concluded that, surveyed SME organisations have been able to improve their
performance in all the four area of study. Singh (2010) had analysed possibilities of
adaptation of industry-specific quality management system standards for Indian auto
component manufacturing firms. However, some of these studies are just descriptive and
do not include an in-depth statistical analysis.
Especially regarding the QM adoption by SMEs in developing economies, empirical
findings indicate that QM perceptions vary with firm size and planning behaviour
(Temtime and Solomon, 2002; Arauz and Suzuki 2004).
2.3 Identifying motives for QMS/ISO implementation
Many specific reasons have been advanced in the literature why organisations implement
the QMS/ISO 9001: 2000 or its predecessors (ISO 9001/9002/9003: 1994). Jones et al.
(1997) studied the reasons of certified Australian companies. The results of these studies
indicate that the reasons may be internal and external, although Jones et al. (1997)
384 A.K. Bewoor and M.S. Pawar
include a third reason, which they call ‘mixed motivation’. They divided them into three
categories: ‘developmental’, ‘non-developmental’ and ‘mixed’. Companies which
belonged to the first category, were motivated by the internal benefits obtained from the
certification process like the improvement of the ‘company’s internal processes’ or
‘business performances’, whereas companies belonging to the ‘non-developmental’
category were pushed towards certification by the market forces (explicit demand of
important customers or necessary condition to bid for government tenders). The ‘mixed’
category regrouped companies having both types of reasons. In fact, the developmental
reasons are synonymous with the internal reasons, and the non-developmental reasons are
synonymous with the external ones.
Earlier researchers from different countries had examined the reasons of ISO
certification, for example, Taiwan: Jang and Lin (2008), Egypt: Magd (2008), Greece:
Gotzamani (2002, 2006), USA: Williams (2004), Malaysia: Naser et al. (2004) and
Yahya and Goh (2001). Most of them had adopted the similar approach of Jones et al.
(1997). However, they found no dominant category between the companies studied.
Escanciano et al. (2001) adopted the internal-external classification of Vloeberghs and
Bellens (1996) and Llopis and Tari (2003) found that Spanish companies were more
motivated to pursue the certification for internal reasons like improving level of quality
system and performance etc. rather than for external ones. In this respect, although the
reasons leading to adopt QMS/ISO are mainly of an external nature (Carlsson and
Carlsson, 1996; Jones et al., 1997; Lee, 1998), those firms seeking certification for
internal reasons do encounter fewer difficulties to implement ISO 9000 (Yahya and Goh,
2001; Zeng et al., 2007) and may improve their performance (Jones et al., 1997; Singels
et al., 2001; Yahya and Goh, 2001).
Some of the earlier researchers (Casadesus and Gimonez, 2000; Singels et al., 2001)
have concluded that certification has been a result of external reasons, rather than internal
ones, and therefore certification is actually a marketing strategy. However, the norm is
also accompanied by an improvement in internal organisation (Casadesus and Gimonez,
2000; Ruzevicius et al., 2004). In this respect, when certification is due to customer
requirements, the firm does not fully profit from the system, whereas in those firms
where certification stems from a management initiative, the purpose is to improve
efficiency and profits are obtained (Anh and Matsui, 2009; Mezher and Ramadan, 1999).
Therefore, reasons exert an influence upon a firm’s performance (Gotzamani, 2004).
Although it must be taken into account that QMS/ISO 9000 implementation may be
an initial step towards total quality (Prajogo, 2009; Costa et al., 2009; Mei et al., 2008;
Van der Wiele and Brown, 1997; Brown et al., 1998; Quazi and Padibjo, 1998), it alone
will not contribute much to quality improvement (Meegan and Taylor, 1997). In this
sense, if ISO 9000 series quality system certification is seen as a means of improving
internal efficiencies, the outcome is more likely to be a workable system. If it is only a
reaction to external pressure from customers, it would be more difficult to perceive
improvements coming from the quality system (Brown et al., 1998). Therefore, although
some researchers suggest that the reason for seeking certification is not a significant
factor in determining whether the overall benefits outweigh cost or not, In general, firms
certified due to internal reasons obtain higher profits than those which do so due to
external reasons (Arauz and Suzuki, 2004; Singels et al., 2001; Yahya and Goh, 2001;
Jones et al., 1997; Lee, 1998). The summary of the motives and studies found in the
literature presented in Table 1.
An empirical study of the motives and benefits of QMS/ISO implementation 385
Table 1 Reasons/motives of implementing QMS/ISO 9000
Internal reasons/motives Sources
Top management decision
(I)
Zaramdini (2007), Escanciano et al. (2001)
,
Brown et al. (1998),
Carlsson and Carlsson (1996)
Improving product and/or
service quality (I)
Magd, (2008), Jang and Lin (2008), Zaramdini (2007), Sachdeva et
al. (2007), Gotzamani (2006), Williams (2004), Ruzevicius et al.
(2004), Arauz and Suzuki (2004), Llopis and Tari (2003), Poksinska
et al. (2002), Escanciano et al. (2001), Singels et al. (2001), Buttle
(1997), Carlsson and Carlsson (1996), Ebrahimpour et al. (1997)
Improving process and
procedures (I)
Gotzamani (2006), Escanciano et al. (2001), Bryde and Slocock
(1998), Krasachol et al. (1998), Lee (1998), Carlsson and Carlsson
(1996), Ebrahimpour et al. (1997), Jones et al. (1997)
Improving productivity
and/or efficiency
Jang and Lin (2008), Zaramdini (2007), Barua and Dhat (2006),
Arauz and Suzuki (2004), Llopis and Tari (2003), Carlsson and
Carlsson (1996), Brown et al. (1998), Bryde and Slocock (1998)
Reducing incidents,
rejection and complaints (I)
Llopis and Tari (2003), Carlsson and Carlsson (1996)
A step towards TQM (I) Magd, (2008), Zaramdini (2007), Barua and Dhat (2006), Llopis
and Tari (2003), Escanciano et al. (2001), Krasachol et al. (1998),
Brown et al. (1998), Bryde and Slocock (1998), Carlsson and
Carlsson (1996)
Use it as a basis for internal
costs reduction (I)
Magd (2008), Jang and Lin (2008), Sachdeva al. (2007), Arauz and
Suzuki (2004), Ruzevicius et al. (2004), Escanciano et al. (2001),
Buttle (1997), Carlsson and Carlsson (1996)
Improving communication
within the organisation (I)
Magd (2008), Gotzamani (2006), Ebrahimpour et al. (1997)
Improving relationships
between employee’s and
management (I)
Ebrahimpour et al. (1997)
Use it as it promotional
and/of marketing tool (E)
Magd,(2008), Zaramdini (2007), Jang and Lin (2008), Williams
(2004), Arauz and Suzuki (2004), Escanciano et al. (2001), Singels
et al. (2001), Brown et al. (1998), Jones et al. (1997)
Maintaining and/or
increasing market share (E)
Magd (2008), Jang and Lin (2008), Zaramdini (2007), Sachdeva et
al. (2007), Ruzevicius et al. (2004), Singels et al. (2001), Bryde and
Slocock (1998), Escanciano et al. (2001), Krasachol et al. (1998),
Carlsson and Carlsson (1996)
Demand and/or pressure
from customers (E)
Jang and Lin (2008), Zaramdini (2007), Gotzamani (2006), Barua
and Dhat (2006), Williams (2004), Ruzevicius et al. (2004), Arauz
and Suzuki (2004), Singels et al. (2001), Escanciano et al. (2001),
Bryde and Slocock (1998), Krasachol et al. (1998), Lee (1998),
Ebrahimpour et al. (1997), Jones et al. (1997), Carlsson and
Carlsson (1996)
Competitive advantage (E) Zaramdini (2007), Gotzamani (2006), Ruzevicius et al. (2004),
Singels et al. (2001), Escanciano et al. (2001), Brown et al. (1998),
Bryde and Slocock (1998), Krasachol et al. (1998), Lee (1998),
Ebrahimpour et al. (1997), Jones et al. (1997), Carlsson and
Carlsson (1996)
Requisite to compete in the
sector (E)
Singels et al. (2001), Escanciano et al. (2001), Brown et al. (1998),
Lee (1998), Jones et al. (1997)
386 A.K. Bewoor and M.S. Pawar
Table 1 Reasons/motives of implementing QMS/ISO 9000 (continued)
Internal reasons/motives Sources
Our competitors are ISO
9001
certified (E)
Magd (2008), Gotzamani (2006), Williams (2004), Ruzevicius et al.
(2004), Arauz and Suzuki (2004), Escanciano et al. (2001),
Ebrahimpour et al. (1997)
Direct entry to new market
(E)
Zaramdini (2007), Gotzamani (2006), Ruzevicius et al. (2004),
Escanciano et al. (2001), Singels et al. (2001), Carlsson and
Carlsson (1996)
Be
role model to suppliers
(E)
Zaramdini (2007), Brown et al. (1998), Bryde and Slocock (1998)
Improving the organisation's
public image (E)
Barua and Dhat (2006), Ruzevicius et al. (2004), Arauz and Suzuki
(2004), Escanciano et al. (2001), Ebrahimpour et al. (1997), Jones et
al. (1997)
Requested by government
(E)
Magd (2008), Zaramdini (2007), Williams (2004), Singels et al.
(2001), Huarng et al. (1999), Carlsson and Carlsson (1996)
On one hand, the desire to create a quality culture, reducing costs and defects, improving
products, improving efficiency and starting on the right path towards total quality are the
internal reasons and on the other, improving corporate image, gaining competitive
advantage, customer requirements and the possibility to enter new markets etc. are
considered as external reasons. In this research we have measured the reasons for seeking
certification from these common reasons.
2.4 Identifying benefits from QMS/ISO implementation
Different authors from different countries had studied the benefits gained from ISO
9001:2000 certification, for example, Australia: Gadenne and Sharma (2009), Terziovski
et al. (2003, 1999), Huarng et al. (1999), Brown et al. (1998) and Jones et al. (1997),
Kuwait: Mady (2009), New Zealand and Australia: Feng et al. (2008), Egypt: Magd
(2008), Oman: Ashrafi (2008), UAE: Zaramdini (2007), Tehran: Bayati and Taghavi
(2007), Turkey: Koc (2007), Spain: Costa and Lorente (2007), Chaina: Zeng (2007),
USA and Canada: Briscoe et al. (2005), Tata et al. (2000), Greece: Gotzamani (2004),
Japan: Arauz and Suziki (2004), Netherlands: Singels et al. (2001), Escanciano et al.
(2001), Romaia: Bryde and Slocock (1998) etc.). Moreover, some scholars had analysed
quantitative financial benefit after QMS/ISO implementation (Naser et al., 2004; Chow-
Chua et al., 2003; Ha¨versjo¨, 2000; Tsekouras et al., 2002; Wayhan et al., 2002; Lima et
al., 2000).
Singels et al. (2001) had argued that, ISO certification is said to give certain benefits
for organisations that can be divided into internal and external benefits. Some earlier
researchers (viz. Magd, 2008 and Al-Khalifa et al., 2008; Zaramdini, 2007; Gotzamani,
2006; Arauz and Suzuki, 2004; Jones et al., 1997) had used internal and external benefit
classification while analysing the benefits of QMS/ISO certification. Internal benefits are
related to the internal functioning of organisations. These benefits are related to the
processes and structure of the organisation. These are, for example, increase in
productivity, improvement in efficiency, reduction in defects, waste and costs, better
management control, clearly-defined organisational task structure/procedures and
responsibilities, improved coordination structure, support in decision making, and
An empirical study of the motives and benefits of QMS/ISO implementation 387
increase in personnel communication. External benefits are benefits concerning the
organisation in relation to its environment. Examples of external benefits are: competitive
advantage, increase in sales and market share, possibility for entering new markets,
keeping customer relations, finding new customers, increased customer satisfaction,
increase in company reliability and reputation which can result in better possibilities for
establishing partnerships, co-maker ships and mergers. The adoption of ISO 9000 has
been justified in terms of the many internal and external benefits it can generate.
Nevertheless, with a correct application of the standard the advantages will doubtless
outweigh the disadvantages. Besides all the benefits discussed, which can be gained by
getting an ISO certificate, there are also some disadvantages, which result from ISO
certification, which can be often found in the literature are: extra costs for achieving ISO
certification, increase in paper workload, no attention for development of personnel, little
attention for the support functions in an organisation. Critics tend to say that ISO
certification brings about a lot of extra costs, and seems not to result in benefits (Brown
et al., 1998; Singels et al., 2001; Yahya and Goh, 2001)., which they refer ISO certificate
as an ‘hollow achievement’ (Jones et al., 1997). Notice that these benefits and
disadvantages are often, in one way or another, incorporated in the performance
indicators to measure an organisation’s performance (Singels et al., 2001; Singels et al.,
2001). The summary of studies about perceived benefits is presented in Table 2.
Table 2 Perceived benefits of implementing QMS/ISO 9000
Perceived benefits Sources
Improved product and/or service
quality
Mady (2009), Magd (2008), Jang and Lin (2008), Bayati and
Taghavi (2007), Koc (2007), Costa and Lorente (2007); Arauz
and Suziki (2004), Gotzamani (2004), Brown et al. (1998),
Escanciano et al. (2001), Singels et al. (2001)
Reduction in incidents, rejections
and complaints
Sachdeva et al. (2007), Koc (2007), Briscoe et al. (2005),
Arauz and Suziki (2004), Gotzamani (2004), Escanciano et al.
(2001)
Increased productivity and/or
efficiency
Gadenne and Sharma, (2009), Magd (2008), Jang and Lin
(2008), Briscoe et al. (2005), Buttle (1997), Dick (2000),
Gotzamani and Tsiotras (2002), Ha¨versjo¨ (2000), Jones et al.
(1997), Lee (1998), Santos and Escanciano (2002)
Reduced internal costs Magd (2008), Bayati and Taghavi (2007), Costa and Lorente
(2007), Briscoe et al. (2005), Arauz and Suziki (2004), Buttle
(1997), Escanciano et al. (2001)
Improved profitability Magd (2008), Jang and Lin (2008), Arauz and Suziki (2004),
Gotzamani (2004), Buttle (1997), Dick (2000), Gotzamani and
Tsiotras (2002), Ha¨versjo¨ (2000),Jones et al. (1997), Lee
(1998), Santos and Escanciano (2002)
Increased workforce motivation
and retention
Magd (2008), Jang and Lin (2008), Costa and Lorente (2007);
Gotzamani (2004), Buttle (1997), Brown et al. (1998),
Escanciano et al. (2001), Gotzamani and Tsiotras (2002),
McLachlan(1996)
Employees become more quality
aware
Magd (2008), Mady (2009), Bayati and Taghavi (2007),
Gotzamani (2004), Brown et al. (1998), Chow-Chua et al.
(2003), Dick (2000), Quazi and Padibjo (1998), Tsiotras and
Gotzamani (1996)
388 A.K. Bewoor and M.S. Pawar
Table 2 Perceived benefits of implementing QMS/ISO 9000 (continued)
Perceived benefits Sources
Improved processes and
procedures
Magd (2008), Jang and Lin (2008), Sachdeva et al. (2007),
Bayati and Taghavi (2007), Gotzamani (2004), Arauz and
Suziki (2004), Chow-Chua et al. (2003), Poksinska et al.
(2002)
Elimination of redundancy or
unnecessary work
Chow-Chua et al. (2003), McLachlan (1996)
Better working environment Escanciano et al. (2001)
Better customer service Mady (2009), Arauz and Suziki (2004), Buttle (1997)
Increased customer satisfaction Gadenne and Sharma, (2009), Magd (2008), Jang and Lin
(2008), Bayati and Taghavi (2007), Costa and Lorente (2007);
Arauz and Suziki (2004), Buttle (1997), Lee (1998),
McLachlan (1996), Gotzamani and Tsiotras (2002), Quazi and
Padibjo (1998)
Reduction in the number of
customer audits
Buttle (1997), Escanciano et al. (2001)
Expansion to international
markets
Magd (2008), Briscoe et al. (2005), Gotzamani (2004),
Chow-Chua et al. (2003), Brown et al. (1998), Buttle (1997)
Greater competitive advantage Dick (2000), Gotzamani and Tsiotras (2002), McLachlan
(1996), Quazi and Padibjo (1998)
Effective promotional and/or
marketing tool
Magd (2008), Buttle (1997)
Improved market share Gadenne and Sharma, (2009), Jang and Lin (2008), Sachdeva
et al. (2007), Costa and Lorente (2007); Briscoe et al. (2005),
Gotzamani (2004), Brown et al. (1998), Dick (2000), Jones et
al. (1997), McLachlan (1996), Santos and Escanciano (2002)
Suppliers’ quality improved Sachdeva et al. (2007), Gotzamani (2004), Escanciano et al.
(2001)
Established and/or improved
mutual cooperation with suppliers
Magd (2008), Mady (2009), Arauz and Suziki (2004),
Escanciano et al. (2001)
Organisation’s image in the
market
Chow-Chua et al. (2003), Tsiotras and Gotzamani (1996),
Vloeberghs and Bellens (1996)
It is observed in the literature study that, depending on each approach, certified firms may
obtain different benefits. However, the comparative analysis of relation between motive
and perceived benefits in case of Indian certified SMEs is not observed in the earlier
studies. Along with the main observation, other literature gaps are reported below.
3 Research gap identification
The literature review indicate that the reasons for ISO certification may be internal and
external, although include a third reason, which they call ‘mixed motivation’ it has also
revealed that, while the implementation of formal quality management in large
organisations has been widely documented, it has received much less attention in relation
to small and medium-sized enterprises. Therefore, although there is a plethora of
literature referring to quality management in large organisations, there are only a limited
An empirical study of the motives and benefits of QMS/ISO implementation 389
number of articles concerning different aspects of quality standards’ implementation in
SMEs worldwide in general and in India in particular. Moreover, the findings of studies
done for large-scale industries are contradictory and usefulness of these findings is
unknown/doubtful in case for SMEs.
Earlier studies in India were restricted to specific states of India (Mahadevappa and
Kotreshwar, 2004; Rao et al., 1997; Barua and Dhar, 2006) and had used very small
sample size (Sachdeva et al. 2007; Bhat and Jagadeesh, 2006). Moreover, some of these
studies are just descriptive and do not include an in depth statistical analysis. However,
Indian SMEs has not been the subject of important research regarding the ISO 9000
standards. This gave impetus to the following research questions:
1 What are the motivational and beneficial aspects of ISO 9001: 2000 certification in
case of Indian SMEs?
2 What are the relationships between these two aspects?
To know the answer, it would be interesting and necessary to conduct an empirical study
on the motives and benefits of ISO 9000 certified Indian SMEs. Hence, we have taken
this aspect for research work, which is reported here.
4 Research methodology
With the aim of investigating the motives behind implementation of the ISO 9001:2000
standard and benefits gained form it, an experience survey is designed and conducted.
Because the focus of this research is exploratory, we chose ‘structured questionnaire for
opinion survey method’ for data collection, which helps to ensure that important
variables and relationships were, identified (Creswell, 1994). Our method was similar to
the theory development methodology used by earlier researchers (for example Magd
(2008), Zaramdini (2007), Gotzamani (2004), Arauz and Suzuki (2004), etc.). Various
statistical analyses were conducted to evaluate how motivational factors relate to
potential organisational benefits. Methodology adopted for carrying out this research
work is followed in steps. These steps are:
a identification of motive and benefits
b design of structured questionnaire
c date collection
d data analysis.
The details of these steps are reported below.
4.1 Identification of motive and benefits
A list of 15 common motive items (that could motivate Indian SMEs for implementing
QMS/ISO) and 19 benefit items was extracted from literature review (refer Tables 1 and
2) covering all possible reasons for which companies may pursue QMS/ISO 9000
certification. They are shown in Tables 3 and 4 respectively. The validity of the lists of
motives and benefits statements was confirmed by a panel of quality managers,
390 A.K. Bewoor and M.S. Pawar
consultants, and experts from academic field during the preliminary testing stage.
Furthermore, the selected motives were classified into two groups: internal group and
external group. Similarly to the motives items list, each benefit item was classified
according to its internal or external most likely effect.
Table 3 Motive items
1 To improve efficiency and productivity 9 Drive to impress quality concern on
suppliers
Developing/ enlarging internal markets 10 To satisfy the explicit demands from
customers
3 Base for wider product/ service quality
improvement process 11 Following the behavior of markets
4 Reducing cost of customer complaints
[production & quality costs] 12 Top management decisions
5 Improve company’s image and
reputation 13 Basis for internal cost reduction
6 To react to have an advantage over
competitors 14 Improving interpersonal and inter
departmental communication skills
7 Anticipated demand from future
customers
8 General pressure from customer
regarding quality assurance
15 Maintaining and/ or increasing market
share
Table 4 Perceived benefits
Internal benefits 13 Improved of production planning and
control
1 Increased work force morale and
motivation 14 Increased standardisation and
systemisation
2 Employee’s quality awareness
improves 15 Increased communication within the
organisation
3 Improved working environment
4 Improved customer service External benefits
5 Decreased defect rates 16 Increased customer satisfaction
6 Decrease in amount of rework
(defective production) 17 Improved market share
7 Part delivery in full and on time 18 Entry/Expansion to international markets
8 Cost of quality reduced 19 Improved supplier quality
9 Enhancement in documentation 20 Greater competitive advantage
10 Clear work instructions and procedures
to assist staff 21 Effective promotional marketing tool
11 Motivates and guides for continuous
improvement process 22 Improvement of organisations image
12 Reduction in number of customer
audits 23 23.Improved mutual co-operation with
suppliers and customers
An empirical study of the motives and benefits of QMS/ISO implementation 391
4.2 Design of structured questionnaire
Based on above motives and perceived benefits for QMS/ISO implementation, a
questionnaire is prepared. We note that, the redundant and open to interpretation type of
motivational and perceived benefit statements were eliminated from the selection. The
Likert scale of five points was used for evaluating every question statement. The scale
was assigned values from one to five to indicate agreement or disagreement with the
statement; where value 5 indicates highest; 1 indicates lowest level of agreement and
scores between 3 and 4 indicates moderate level of agreement.
4.3 Data collection
4.3.1 Collection of list of QMS/ISO certified companies
To collect the companies’ information regarding addresses, phone numbers etc.,
companies are selected randomly from a directory of ISO 9000/14000 certified industries
published by the Indian Product Promotion Center (IPPC), New Delhi (India), and the
directory published by Maratha Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI), Pune
(India). The list included companies operating in different fields (e.g., automobile,
machining and fabricated metal products, electronic product, electrical and optical
equipment, machinery and equipment, chemical engineering, chemical products and
fibres, rubber and plastic products producing companies etc.).
4.3.2 Actual data collection
In this research, the collection of data was done through a questionnaire survey. The
questionnaire was directly communicated to the quality managers of the companies
surveyed because it was an important recommendation from the study group. Evidently,
the internal-external classification of the question statements was not made apparent to
the respondent. Quality managers were asked to give responses for 15 reasons/motives
using a five-point Likert type scale (1 = strongly disagree, 5 = strongly agree).Besides,
many authors in similar studies selected the quality manager as the most suitable person
to answer their questionnaires as he/she is usually the key person in coordinating the
certification process and is supposed to have had an extensive training in quality
management (Carlsson and Carlsson, 1996; Escanciano et al., 2001; Llopis and Tari,
2003). Out of 800 sent questionnaires, 231 received questionnaires, among them 11 were
eliminated from subsequent analysis as, they had incomplete responses. Thus, the
research is based on the data provided by 220 respondents, which leads to 27.17%
response rate.
5 Data analysis
The data analysis uses reliability tests, validity tests, t-test of the means, factor analysis
and correlation analysis. All statistical analyses were performed by using SPSS software.
The internal consistency of a group of measurement items refers to the degree to which
items in the group are homogenous. In this study, the internal consistency is estimated by
using the Cronbach’s alpha reliability coefficient. The Cronbach’s alpha value for the 15
392 A.K. Bewoor and M.S. Pawar
motives and 22 perceived benefits items is resulted higher than 0.6, which suggests a
satisfactory reliability (Malhotra, 2004).
Data analysis consists of:
1 descriptive statistical analysis of the companies’ information
2 statistical analysis of:
a motives/reasons for QMS/ISO implementation
b perceived benefits after QMS/ISO implementation
c paired samples t- test (motives and benefits)
d factor analysis of reasons/motives behind QMS/ISO implementation
e factor analysis of perceived benefits after QMS/ISO implementation.
5.1 Descriptive statistical analysis of the companies’ information
A descriptive statistical analysis of the companies’ demographic information is presented
in Table 5. We note that the majority of the surveyed companies are operating in the
manufacturing sector. Most of the respondents have a long working experience in the
quality field.
Data analysis is done for ranking the motives and benefits items according to their
mean value. A t-test was performed on the respondents’ data in order to determine the
significant items.
Table 5 Descriptive statistical analysis of the companies/respondent
Type/size Number of response Percentage
Common type of manufacturing environment
a Job production type 109 49.54
b Batch production type 35 15.90
c Large batch/mass production 76 34.56
Total 220 100
*Size of companies
a Medium 53 24.09
b Small 167 75.91
Total 220 100
Note: *Categorisation is done as per guidelines given by ‘micro, small, medium and large
scale industrial act: 2006’
5.2 Statistical analysis of motives for QMS/ISO implementation
The data related to the motives/reasons for QMS/ISO implementation is analysed by
calculating its mean, standard deviation and t-test values. All motive items are arranged
according to their decreasing mean values. Further, motive items viz. ‘to improve
efficiency and productivity’, ‘base for wider product/service quality improvement
An empirical study of the motives and benefits of QMS/ISO implementation 393
process’, and ‘reducing cost of customer complaints’ shows higher significant t-value
(refer to Table 6).
Table 6 Motives/reasons for QMS/ISO implementation
Motives (reasons for certification) Type Ma SDb t-value
To improve efficiency and productivity I 4.82 0.65 110.064
Base for wider product/process and/or service quality
improvement I 4.27 0.97 65.402
Reducing cost of customer complaints[production and
quality costs] I 3.89 1.15 50.253
Improve company's image and reputation E 3.77 1.36 41.168
To satisfy the explicit demands from customers E 3.62 1.20 44.755
General pressure from customer regarding quality
assurance E 3.57 1.06 49.736
To react to have an advantage over competitors E 3.48 1.37 37.701
Anticipated demand from future customers E 3.30 1.16 42.058
Developing/ enlarging markets I 3.20 1.34 35.309
Following the behaviour of markets E 3.05 1.21 37.519
Top management decisions I 3.04 1.17 38.370
Drive to impress quality concern on suppliers E 2.95 1.41 30.995
Basis for internal cost reduction I 2.57 1.25 30.633
Improving interpersonal and inter-departmental
communication skills I 2.35 1.20 29.065
Maintaining and/ or increasing market share E 2.10 1.11 27.940
Note: a M = mean, b SD = std. deviation
5.3 Statistical analysis of perceived benefits after QMS/ISO implementation
Table 7 presents the mean, standard deviation and t-values results for the 19 benefit
statements. All the perceived benefits items are arranged according to their decreasing
mean values. The first three important benefits are associated with internal operational
issues like procedures, standardisation and work instructions/processes. The internal
benefit statements like ‘improved processes and procedures’, ‘standardisation and
systemisation’ and ‘employees become more quality aware’ showed significant positive
t-values. The ‘increased in overall productivity and efficiency’ benefit statement held the
last position as an internal benefit as shown in the table.
5.4 Expected and perceived benefits analysis
Certain similarities exist between Tables 4 and 5 items with respect to particular aspects
of motives and benefits under study in this empirical research. For example, in Table 6
we identified ‘improving product and/or service quality’ as a motive item and in Table 7
we identified the ‘improved product and/or service quality’ as a benefit item. As the
difference between the two statements is not only in the verbal context but also in how
the respondents perceive the effect of QMS/ISO implementation on the product and/or
394 A.K. Bewoor and M.S. Pawar
service quality, by consequence the two items can be classified as ‘expected’ benefit and
‘perceived’ benefit, respectively. In Table 8, we gathered eight pairs of expected and
perceived benefits associated with QMS/ISO implementation, and then we analysed their
aggregate mean differences (expected-perceived). If the mean difference, for a certain
pair of statements, had a significant negative value then the perceived benefit value
exceeded the expected benefit value. Hence, the QMS/ISO implementation led to a good
quality surprise. In other words the respondents found an improvement or an amelioration
in the statement studied. On the contrary, if the mean difference had a significant positive
value then the QMS/ISO implementation led to an unsatisfactory quality result.
In Table 8, most of the significant mean differences were positive with a
corresponding positive t-value like in pairs: 1, 2 and 3. Apparently, the respondents did
not feel that, after acquiring the QMS/ISO certificate, their respective firms improved
their productivity, processes, procedures and product quality. Except for pair 5, where the
associated means are nearly equal to three, the mean values of pairs 4, 6, 7 and 8 are near
to or greater than four. Hence, the respondents still obtained a good outcome after
implementing QMS/ISO system.
Although pairs viz. 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 had presented a negative mean difference, as they
seem to show the usefulness of the certification. The remaining pair 5 is disregarded from
this analysis as they showed non-significant mean differences along with relatively
lowest respective mean values.
Table 7 Perceived benefits after QMS/ISO implementation
Perceived benefits Type Ma SDb t-value
Improved system evaluation procedure I 4.67 .53 131.933
Increased standardisation and systemisation I 4.47 .63 105.355
Improved/clear work instructions and procedures to assist staff I 4.44 .61 107.494
Increased customer satisfaction E 4.02 .46 128.953
Improved employee’s quality awareness and involvement in
QMS related initiatives I 4.00 .50 118.260
Reduction in number of customer audits I 4.00 .59 101.270
Improved profitability I 3.96 .59 99.271
Increased work force morale and motivation I 3.91 .44 130.459
Improvement of organisations image and reputation E 3.88 .32 177.948
Improved communication within the organisation I 3.78 .44 127.803
Improved competitive advantage I 3.71 .57 96.362
Improved working environment I 3.69 .50 109.259
Effective promotional marketing tool E 3.65 .51 106.600
Improved product/process and/or service quality I 3.64 .72 75.303
Decrease in amount of rework (defective production) I 3.36 .53 94.602
Entry/expansion to international markets E 3.30 .51 96.417
Improved mutual co-operation with suppliers and customers E 3.26 .47 103.006
Increased in overall productivity and efficiency I 3.25 .77 62.301
Improved supplier quality E 3.22 .52 91.258
Note: a M = mean score, b SD = std. deviation
An empirical study of the motives and benefits of QMS/ISO implementation 395
Table 8 Paired samples t- test (motives and benefits)
Pair
no. Motive – benefit items Mean
1
Mean
2
Mean
diff
Std.
dev. t Sig.(2-
tailed)
Pair 1 (Improving – improved) productivity
and/or internal efficiency 4.81 3.25 1.56 1.03 22.62 .000
Pair 2 (To Improve – improved)
product/process service quality 4.27 3.64 0.63 1.20 7.812 .000
Pair 3 (To reduce – reduced) customer
complaint 3.89 3.36 0.53 1.36 6.214 .000
Pair 4 (Improving – improved) company
image and reputation 3.77 3.88 –0.11 1.40 –1.15 .249
Pair 5 (To expand – expanded) market 3.20 3.30 –0.10 1.42 –1.14 .256
Pair 6 (To improve – improved) customer
satisfaction 3.62 4.02 –0.40 1.32 –4.49 .000
Pair 7 (To gain – gained) competitive
advantage 3.48 4.47 –0.99 1.50 –9.76 .000
Pair 8 (To improve – assisted staff to
improve) skill 2.35 4.44 –2.10 1.35 –22.96 .000
6.2.4 Factor analysis
The factor analysis is used to reduce the multiple relationships that may exist among
variable statements. It uncovers the common dimensions that link together the seemingly
unrelated variables, and provides insight into the underlying structure of the data. The
principal component extraction method was chosen to analyse the correlation matrix, and
to extract the eigenvalues over one. For easier interpretation of the data set, the Varimax
rotation was applied. Only the factor loadings, that had values greater than 0.4, were
considered. The factor analysis of the motives items was performed for only 13 items
because the significance of the t-test statistics along with the sign of the t-value, carried
out in the previous subsection, showed no important effect for the last three statements
(see Table 6). The reasons ‘drive to impress quality concern on suppliers’ and ‘inter-
departmental communication skills’ is not considered in the factor analysis because of its
very low influence as a motivating force across all the industry sectors of Indian SMEs.
To test suitability of the data set for factor analysis, Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin (KMO) test and
Barlett’s test of sphericity have been conducted (Exhibit 1). The output is as follows:
Exhibit 1 KMO and Bartlett’s test
KMO measure of sampling adequacy 0.588
Approx. chi-square 520.170
Df 105
Bartlett’s test of sphericity
Sig. 0.000
We note that, the value of the overall KMO measure of sampling adequacy (KMO
measure) for the motives factor analysis was equal to 0.588 (greater than 0.5) and
significance level of Bartlett’s test was 0.000 equal to (less than 0.05), which indicate the
suitability of data for further factor analysis (Malhotra, 2004).
396 A.K. Bewoor and M.S. Pawar
Table 9 Factor analysis output on reasons/motives behind QMS/ISO implementation
Varimax rotated loading
Reason/motive items for QMS/ISO
implementation
Factor 1:
better
quality and
productivity
Factor 2:
image and
potential
customer
Factor 3:
pressure
form
customer
Factor 4:
existing
customer
concern
To improve efficiency and
productivity 0.744
To react to have an advantage over
competitors 0.714
Top management decisions 0.616
Basis for internal cost reduction 0.506
Base for wider
product/process/service quality
improvement
0.430
Anticipated demand from future
customers 0.600
Improve company's image and
reputation 0.542
To satisfy the explicit demands from
customers 0.664
General pressure from customer
regarding quality assurance 0.648
Developing/enlarging international
markets 0.549
Reducing cost of customer
complaints 0.457
Maintaining and/or increasing
market share 0.651
Following the behaviour of markets 0.728
Eigen value 2.645 1.818 1.667 1.398
Cumulative % variance 16.974 28.538 39.649 48.931
The motives items were reduced to four factors. The first factor is rated to ‘better quality
and productivity’ the second one relates to ‘image and potential customer’, the third one
‘pressure form customer’ covering customer requirements and the fourth one is ‘existing
customer concern’ (refer to Table 9). The naming of the factors was done according to
the statements included in every factor. For instance, Factor 1 of Table 9 was called
‘better quality and productivity’ because the question statements under this grouping
included issues such as, ‘improve efficiency and productivity’, ‘base for wider
product/process/service quality improvement’, ‘react to have an advantage over
competitors’, ‘top management decisions’, ‘basis for internal cost reduction’. These
motivational aspects might be regarded as associated with the activities performed for
improving quality and productivity of an organisation.
The second factor was labelled ‘image and potential customer’ represents anticipated
demand from future customers and company’s image and reputation. Lastly, and by
applying the same reasoning process for the first two factors, the third factor was called
An empirical study of the motives and benefits of QMS/ISO implementation 397
‘pressure form customer’ as two out of the four variables that had higher loading were
explicitly associated with customers’ requirements per se and the fourth was called
‘existing customer concern’. ‘Better quality and productivity’ has found to be the most
dominant factor across the SMEs in general in India. It is followed by ‘pressure form
customer’, ‘image and potential customer’ and ‘existing customer concern’.
The factor analysis of the benefits items was performed for only 18 items. KMO test
and Barlett’s test of sphericity have been conducted (Exhibit 2). We note that, the value
of the overall KMO measure of sampling adequacy for the motives factor analysis was
equal to 0.612 (greater than 0.5) and significance level of Bartlett’s test was 0.000 equal
to (less than 0.05), which indicate the suitability of data for further factor analysis
(Malhotra, 2004).
Exhibit 2 KMO and Bartlett’s test (for testing validity of data for factorial analysis)
KMO measure of sampling adequacy 0.612
Approx. chi-square 3654.672
Df 435 Bartlett’s test of sphericity
Sig. 0.000
Table 10 Factor analysis output perceived benefits after QMS/ISO implementation
Varimax rotated loadin
g
Perceived benefit items after
QMS/ISO implementation
Quality
awareness
and working
environment
Customer
and
supplier
satisfaction
Market
expansion
Higher
productivity
and efficiency
System
procedural
advantage
Improved working
environment 0.889
Improved employee’s quality
awareness and involvement in
QMS related initiatives
0.841
Increased work force morale
and motivation 0.696
Improved mutual co-operation
with suppliers and customers 0.700
Improvement of organisations
image and reputation 0.690
Increased customer
satisfaction 0.631
Improved supplier quality 0.472
Effective promotional
marketing tool 0.635
Entry/expansion to
international markets 0.490
Improved profitability 0.417
Decrease in amount of rework
(defective production) 0.532
398 A.K. Bewoor and M.S. Pawar
Table 10 Factor analysis output perceived benefits after QMS/ISO implementation (continued)
Varimax rotated loading
Perceived benefit items after
QMS/ISO implementation
Quality
awareness
and working
environment
Customer
and
supplier
satisfaction
Market
expansion
Higher
productivity
and
efficiency
System
procedural
advantage
Improved communication
within the organisation 0.501
Improved product/process
and/or service quality 0.463
Increased in overall
productivity and efficiency 0.432
Improved system evaluation
procedure 0.731
Improved competitive
advantage 0.617
Reduction in number of
customer audits 0.614
Improved/clear work
instructions and procedures to
assist staff
0.402
Eigen values 2.807 2.460 2.221 1.765 1.490
Cumulative % variance
explained 14.774 27.723 39.415 48.702 56.546
Five factors were selected and named as: ‘quality awareness and working environment’,
‘customer and supplier satisfaction’, ‘market expansion’, ‘higher productivity and
efficiency’, ‘system procedural advantage’ (see Table 10).
6 Findings and discussions
The analysis of data on the motives for QMS/ISO implementation suggests that there are
several important driving forces for ISO 9000 certification. The most significant ones are
‘to improve efficiency and productivity’, ‘base for wider product/service quality
improvement process’, and ‘reducing cost of customer complaints’ showing high t-value.
As shown in Table 6, the first three positions were occupied by internal motives. The first
external motive, ‘improve company’s image and reputation’, held the fourth position.
However, ‘maintaining and/ or increasing market share’ and ‘improving interpersonal
and ‘inter-departmental communication skills’ are mostly regarded as not an influencing
force behind implementation of QMS/ISO. Discussions with managers, management
representatives, etc., clearly indicated that QMS/ISO 9000 implementation has been
accepted as a beginning, providing a mechanism to bring about systematic improvement.
Improving organisational image and reputation is, also, rated as a very strong motivator
by the Indian SMEs. External forces are found to have exerted moderate impetus on the
Indian SMEs in motivating certification initiatives. The external motivating forces are
An empirical study of the motives and benefits of QMS/ISO implementation 399
less forceful in comparison, commanding moderate importance in the opinions of the
respondents. This result highly corroborates with the studies of: Buttle (1997), Carlsson
and Carlsson (1996), Llopis and Tari (2003), Poksinska et al. (2002) and Zaramdini
(2007). The remaining reason is related to the improvement of the organisation’s public
image, an outcome found as well by: Arauz and Suziki (2004), Escanciano et al. (2001),
Huarng et al. (1999) and Llopis and Tari (2003). From the results, we may conclude that,
barring exceptions, certification based on an internal motivation usually has a positive
effect upon a firm’s performance.
The top benefits perceived by the surveyed firms illustrate again the internal-external
duality. Similar results were observed in the studies of: Brown et al. (1998), Buttle
(1997), Chow-Chua et al. (2003), Escanciano et al. (2001), Magd et al. (2003), and
Zaramdini (2007). It seems that the Indian SMEs are satisfied with the QMS/ISO 9001
implementation as they have realised their expected benefits.
Comparing 15 motives and 19 benefits items are difficult due to their intrinsic
differences. For example the ‘top management decision’ motive statement has no
counterpart in the benefits list. However, the relationship between the motives and
benefits items can be studied through a principal component analysis. Four motives
factors were determined and named as: ‘better quality and productivity’ ‘image and
potential customer’, ‘pressure form customer’ and ‘existing customer concern’. Also five
benefits factors were determined and named as: ‘quality awareness and working
environment’, ‘customer and supplier satisfaction’, ‘market expansion’, ‘higher
productivity and efficiency’, ‘system procedural advantage’. Factors, determined in this
study, are similar to the ones listed in the papers of: Arauz and Suziki (2004); Buttle
(1997); Huarng et al. (1999); Llopis and Tari (2003), Singels et al. (2001) and Zaramdini
(2007). The relationship between the motives and benefits was further investigated by
analysing the mean differences between the expected-perceived pairs of motives and
benefits using paired samples t-test. The analysis revealed two results:
1 a little ‘disappointment’ was observed by the respondents relative to the
improvement of the internal operational aspects like: productivity,
product/process/service quality and dealing with customer complaints
2 a ‘satisfactory’ performance was noticed by the firms relative to marketing and
public image/reputation etc. issues.
In other words, the responding firms met some of their external goals and to a lesser
degree their internal ones. Although the internal goals have been met moderately, they
still represent an important achievement because they scored above four on a five-point
Likert scale. Besides, improving the efficiency of the firm or its product quality cannot be
based solely only on ISO 9001: 2000 certification. It seems that either the managers have
over emphasised the outcomes of ISO 9000 or QMS/ISO implementation process must
use competent quality/productivity improvement tool(s), which must be complimentary
to it. This could explain why certain discrepancies have emerged between certain
expected and perceived benefits.
7 Conclusions
The specific conclusions of this study are as follows:
400 A.K. Bewoor and M.S. Pawar
1 The most important factors behind implementing QMS/ISO by the Indian SMEs
have been identified as: ‘better quality and productivity’, ‘pressure form customer’,
‘image and potential customer’, and ‘existing customer concern’. ‘Improving
efficiency and productivity’ appears as the leading motivator, followed by ‘base for
wider product/process/service quality improvement’ and ‘reducing cost of customer
complaints’.
2 It is realised that the internal forces basically drive the organisations towards ISO
9000 certification initiatives. External forces are found to have exerted moderate
impetus on the Indian SME organisations in motivating QMS/ISO implementation
initiatives.
3 The most important types of benefits after implementing QMS/ISO by the Indian
SMEs have been identified as: ‘quality awareness and working environment’,
‘customer and supplier satisfaction’, ‘market expansion’, ‘system procedural
advantage’.
4 More firms are moving from the ISO 9001/9002/9003: 1994 to the ISO 9001: 2000
and 2008 versions of the standard.
8 Recommendations for practitioners and future scope
The practical implications of this study are as follows:
The QMS/ISO implementation study has identified important benefits of QMS/ISO
implementation in Indian SMEs, hence companies can be recommended to go for the
QMS /ISO system if they wish to have these/ specific benefits.
The QMS/ISO implementation has been used as a marketing tool, which has helped
industries to improve their image and reputation. Moreover, from data analysis it
seems that the responding firms are not fully aware of the potential use of
QMS/ISO9001certification as a passport for international business.
QMS/ISO implementation process must be integrated with quality/productivity
improvement tool(s)/method like Six Sigma, Lean concept etc. which are be
complimentary to it.
Future scope: this research can be continued as a future work mainly in two areas: first,
the outcomes of this empirical study can form an important reference to continue the
research for investigating the impact of QMS/ISO implementation on individual
processes of different functional areas of Indian SMEs Such as the financial
performances. Secondly, the link between the motives and benefits was analysed using
paired samples t-test and revealed that some method can be developed which can be and
integrated with company QMS for improving quality/productivity and defect-free
production.
Finally, the ISO 9000 is not an end in itself. It is only the first step in the endless road
to quality (Mahadevappa and Kotreshwar, 2004). Indeed, the Indian SMEs should
continue their efforts relentlessly in order to attain and sustain organisational excellence.
An empirical study of the motives and benefits of QMS/ISO implementation 401
Acknowledgements
The authors are thankful to the reviewers for their constructive and helpful suggestions to
improve the earlier version of the paper.
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... Many studies have been carried out both in developed and developing countries. Studies on developed countries have been done by Al-Khalifa et al. (2008), Casadesús and Karapetrovic (2005), Martínez-Costa and Martínez-Lorente (2007), Prajogo (2009), Sharma (2005), and Wiele et al. (2005); and those on developing countries by Al-Khalili and Subari (2014), Bayati and Taghavi (2007), Bewoor and Pawar (2010), Capistrano (2008), Devpura et al. (2014), Koc (2007), Lo et al. (2013), Mady (2011), andSrivastav (2010). In many cases, different results, some of which were contradictory, were obtained. ...
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This study seeks to examine the situation of ISO 9000 implementation in Vietnamese companies and its relationship with company performance. Based on data collected from 108 companies through a questionnaire survey in 2012, we investigate the changes in quality management practices and different performance dimensions before and after ISO 9000 implementation, and study the impact of ISO 9000 implementation on company performance. The results of statistical analysis indicate that ISO 9000 implementation significantly improves various quality management practices and quality performance. This study contributes to the quality management literature by highlighting the significant impact of ISO 9000 on the performance of the Vietnamese companies. In addition, the results of this study provide meaningful and practical insight into quality management practices in the companies.
... Nair and Prajogo (2009) found that ISO 9000 internalisation is significantly associated with operational performance and business performance. The QMS implementation process has generated more internal benefits than external ones (Bewoor and Pawar, 2010). Singh (2011) and Wahid et al. (2011) have stated that top management commitment, employee empowerment and participation, coordination between departments, customer feedback and supplier development, process management, product quality and customer satisfaction are dependent variables for ISO 9000 quality system. ...
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