Total quality management in libraries: fad or fact?

J.H. Viljoen, P.G. Underwood

Abstract


This article considers the present circumstances in libraries and the changes that are taking place arising from present uncertainty. Some of these changes are brought about by the changing environment, the ever increasing demands of users, the fast growth and influence of information technology as well as certain external factors, for example the declining buying power of the Rand. Libraries as service organizations are very conscious of all these influences. The possible use of Total Quality Management (TQM) and the application of Deming's 14 points model in solving some of these problems are also discussed. From the discussion of the 14 points it is evident that the application and use of TQM is a fact and not a fad in libraries. The importance of the application is focussed on the fact that TQM is helping libraries to establish a culture of never-ending improvement of quality of products and services. By doing this, library management also indicate to funders that they are prepared to make the most of available financial support to meet the demands of users. The article concludes by emphasizing that this process of change and growing user demands must be managed well and that the principles of TQM offer librarians help in this regard.

Hierdie artikel beskryf die huidige omstandighede sowel as veranderinge wat in biblioteke plaasvind asook die gepaardgaande onsekerheid. Van hierdie veranderinge spruit voort uit die omgewing waarbinne biblioteke funksioneer, die steeds toenemende gebruikersbehoeftes, die vinnige ontwikkeling en invloed van die informasietegnologie asook sommige eksterne faktore soos die dalende koopkrag van die Rand. Biblioteke is diensorganisasies en dra deeglik kennis van al hierdie faktore. Die artikel bespreek verder die filosofie van Total Quality Management (TQM) gebaseer op die 14 punte van Deming en dui aan hoe dit op biblioteke van toepassing kan wees. Uit hierdie bespreking is dit duidelik dat TQM 'n feit en nie 'n gier is nie. Die belangrikheid van die toepassing TQM vir biblioteke is daarin gelee dat dit 'n kultuur van voortdurende verbetering van die kwaliteit van produkte en dienste teweeg bring. Jndien biblioteke sukses hiermee behaal, sal dit ook vir owerhede wat biblioteke finansier 'n aanduiding wees dat fondse goed bestee word en dat aan gebruikersbehoeftes voldoen word. Die artikel sluit af deur te beklemtoon dat die proses van verandering goed bestuur moet word en dat die filosofie van TQM 'n bydrae hiertoe kan lewer


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7553/65-1-1500

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