Quality improvement in professional local government services : a longitudinal study


This sustained longitudinal study, carried out in a single local authority, investigates the implementation of a Total Quality Management (TQM) philosophy in professional local government services. At the start of this research, a large majority of what was written about TQM was polemical and based on limited empirical evidence. This thesis seeks to provide a significant and important piece of work, making a considerable contribution to the current state of knowledge in this area. Teams from four professional services within a single local authority participated in this research, providing the main evidence on how the quality management agenda in a local authority can be successfully implemented. To supplement this rich source of data, various other sources and methods of data collection have been used: 1) Interviews were carried out with senior managers from within the authority; 2) Customer focus groups and questionnaires were used; 3) Interviews were carried out with other organisations, all of which were proponents of a TQM philosophy. A number of tools have been developed to assist in gathering data: 1) The CSFs (critical success factors) benchmarking tool; 2) Five Stages of Quality Improvement Model. A Best Practice Quality Improvement Model, arising from an analysis of the literature and the researcher's own experience is proposed and tested. From the results a number of significant conclusions have been drawn relating to: 1) Triggers for change; 2) Resistance of local government professionals to change 3) Critical success factors and barriers to quality improvement in professional local government services; 4) The problems associated with participant observation and other methodological issues used.

Divisions: College of Business and Social Sciences > Aston Business School
Additional Information: Department: Aston Business School If you have discovered material in AURA which is unlawful e.g. breaches copyright, (either theirs or that of a third party) or any other law, including but not limited to those relating to patent, trademark, confidentiality, data protection, obscenity, defamation, libel, then please read our Takedown Policy and contact the service immediately.
Institution: Aston University
Uncontrolled Keywords: longitudinal study,total quality management,process management,critical success factors,benchmarking tool,best practice,SERvQUAL,focus groups,professional public services
Last Modified: 08 Dec 2023 08:33
Date Deposited: 04 Mar 2011 09:34
Completed Date: 2001-12
Authors: Bond, Jennifer


Export / Share Citation


Additional statistics for this record