First of all, we are very grateful to the Almighty God – for bearing us the knowledge and wisdom that has been used throughout the project. May the product of our efforts justify the gift that the Almighty God has bestowed upon them. We are sincerely expressed our gratitude to all Bosch Philippines departments’ managers and employees who shared their knowledge about the company and time interviewing them. Last but definitely not the least; we would like to express our appreciation, to the ones who have rendered unconditional support and love to us: our family. Our family from whom we got the motivation and inspiration to never give up and give the best of our efforts. Through this project, may our efforts reach our parents and reflect our indebtedness for our sacrifices.
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In a span of time, Bosch has emerged into a successful business to what it is today. It has continuously improved the quality of service. Of course, customers’ complaints are inevitable in every organization. Three (3) complaints out of one hundred products sold to customers are caused by some product defects, its expensive price, customers’ attitudes (arte), order delivery and some rare safety concern of its users. To initiate quality programs to better meet customers’ requirements, Bosch should have its own quality control in the Philippines to avoid some product defects and user’s accidents due of using Bosch’ products. The company should come up with Customer Relationship Management system to build understanding between them and the customer that expensive price of their product is no issue when it comes to product quality and of customer satisfaction.
II. Objectives of the Study
a. Study the quality initiatives of Bosch to better meet their customers’ needs and requirements b. Compare Bosch’s quality programs with existing literature c. Identify Areas of strengths and areas for development on Bosch’s quality initiatives; and d. Recommend specific programs to improve total quality management at Bosch
III. Quality Assurance at Bosch
“Selling the best of the best” and I rather lose money than trust” were the mottos of person behind the success of Bosch, Robert Bosch. Since its establishment, the company continues to create value to customers and practice Robert Bosch’s principle of total quality, “success was based on the trust of business partners and product quality. Bosch was created on 1932, located in Germany and in 140 countries in the world and the innovator and pioneer of powertools in the world. Their products includes: Automotive Aftermarket, Powertools, Security Systems and Thermotechnology.
Customer and Stakeholder Focus
Bosch established their Training Center to value their customers, dealers and contractors through educating them about their products and its proper use to avoid accidents when using their products for free. They even collaborate with educational institutions like TESDA, universities and colleges to be more accessible and convenient to interested trainee. Bosch encourage their customers to bring their purchased products at their Service center every three (3) months for maintenance and check-up processed by a qualified technician which are still covered of a six-month warranty for power tools and one-year warranty for measuring tools. To bring their products into the understanding of people who are unfamiliar with their products, Bosch use trade developer in different regions in the country to look for potential customers that will be endorsed to the sales representative.
Sales representative is responsible of demonstrating the products to customers and monitoring their orders. Bosch also uses sales agents or promodizers to introduce the product in various stores in the country. Bosch offers the appropriate spare part customers need for any power tools. Bosch keeps spare parts available for at least 10 years. This means that even older tools are ready for use again in the record time.
Participation and Teamwork
Every department sets their goal that motivates their employees to perform better. For example, Sales Department set their target sales every month which requires more efforts on the part of the Sales Department and more marketing strategy of Marketing Department, so it needs teamwork from both departments. Managers act as a democratic leader on his subordinates and treat them as a team which implies importance and belongingness to the employees. IT Department serves a support group to the company as they are the one doing trouble shooting on technical problems on all of the computers of the entire company. Employees use Microsoft Outlook to send and receive emails as their network of connection connected by a cable which does not need internet to communicate with each other and disseminate information throughout the company.
The company uses a software called System Application and Production (SAP) which makes it accessible to all Department Managers to monitor and study sales and product stocks at their warehouse which is helpful for their effective and efficient decision making and inventory. This system is also useful to accounting departments to record financial data. The company maintains their do-good mentality. Bosch sends their employees abroad to undergo training to enhance their skills and abilities which will in turn produce a better performance and satisfied customers. They just not believe in doing well, but they believe in doing good. For Bosch, doing good means giving back through projects that inspire and move their associates to action. Those projects includes sponsoring potential eighty eight students and employing some of them at their office. To build camaraderie between employees, the company provides them with annual outing.
Bosch does benchmarking through product-product quality analysis to analyze their products against their competitors to meet the changing wants and satisfaction of their customers. Bosch has a company policy on product recall or pull-out when customers’ complaints on a certain product or model reaches six percent (6%) out of one hundred percent (100%) sold product to ensure that they are delivering quality products to customers. Those defective products are to be sent to their main plant in Germany for further studies. For efficient delivery and availability of products, Bosch orders products beforehand to its manufacturing plant in Germany through shipping and store them at their warehouse.
The company positions itself as a number one (#1) power tool products in the country which requires employees to efficiently process customers order and deliver it on time. The customers may opt to call Bosch to process their order on their service hotline or through Service Representatives, order will be passed to Sales Coordinator who writes and documents order slip and process order and encode them through SAP system which is connected to Logistic department who shall deliver products to customers. To support the demanding needs of the company, Purchase department is responsible of purchasing materials needed by the departments such as fliers for Marketing Department and ensure of its quality and cost-effectiveness.
The company has its own Research Development that is behind of annual launching of new products. Every month, company’s product division set their sales quota and eventually increases every time they meet or exceed it. This requires more efforts and improvement both the product and the process.
Bosch has its own Training Center that educates customers, contractors, hobbyist, and interested trainee for free. To reach more people, Bosch partnered with Tesda, universities and colleges. Having its own training is one indication that Bosch values their existing and prospect customers. It involves money, effort, and sympathy from the company, but those things are nothing when it comes to customer’s enlightenment to products and customers’ satisfaction and delight. This program is patterned with the customer and stakeholder focus principle of TQM. Educating people who may not bring benefit to the company is somewhat costly and effortful on the part of the company, but this will eventually build relationship, trust and confidence between the company and the beneficiary of the training program which may eventually results of patronizing the products.
The company has its own Service Center that addresses customer’s complaints and concerns. This service is patterned with the TQM customers and stakeholder focus and the Quality Installation and Service which implies that Bosch knows and understands the needs and expectations of customer after the sale in order to have customer’ value and loyalty. Offering service after sales is one indication that Bosch wants to have long term relationship with their customers and exceed their expectations.
Empowering employees through undergoing training programs boost their sense of belongingness and importance and will make them more motivated and inspired to perform better. This program is aligned with the principle of Participation and Teamwork of TQM.
The company has its own System Application and Production (SAP), a software or database uses by the selected employees and managers to monitor stocks, sales, deliver products and accounting data. This system is aligned with Process Focus principle and Information and Knowledge Management of TQM infrastructure. Use of this kind of technology is an investment of the company because it makes process more effectively and efficiently. More so, decision making is easier to the information user because information they needed is always accessible and can be retrieved quickly.
V. Bosch’s Quality Profile
Areas of Strengths
Bosch has known to be the innovator of power tools in the world. Every year, they launch new tools, offering better and new products and it serves as their advantage over their competitors. Its German quality can
persuade customers to purchase their product. This year, DOLE announced that construction industry will boost, and it needs equipment to be used by contractor such as power tools, and security system. Bosch has its own SAP system. It is software enables selected employees and divisions’ manager to have an access of information like sales, inventory and delivery.
Areas for Development
Bosch does not have its own Customer Relationship Management. They just rely on their hotline from which customers could call to order products, ask, suggest and complain. There is no particular department that handles complaints from the customers. Bosch also relies on sales representative or agents report about customer satisfaction. There is no system or process of getting or acquiring customer’s feedback after sale. Numbers of people in departments such as Human Resource, IT and Purchasing are not enough to cater the increasing needs and demands of all stakeholders.
VI. Recommended Quality Programs at Bosch
Bosch should have its own Customer Relationship Management. This system will make easier to them to monitor and get in touch with their customers at all times. With this system, Bosch could address customer’s complaints, concerns and suggestions and not involving all departments to receive such from customers. With this system, the company can build long term relationship with customers and winning their loyalty over competitors. Acquiring customers’ feedback is an important practice of any company. Filling-up feedback and suggestions is tool to gauge and measure customers’ satisfaction to products supplementary services needed to enhance the product. It is better if Bosch Philippines have their own Quality Control in the country to check products after shipping them from Germany. It is inevitable to products to get damage during shipment. The company may increase their employees in such departments especially the HR department who is handling the employees’ welfare and concerns.