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Do quality systems really make a difference?

Landin, Anne LU and Nilsson, Carl-Henric LU (2001) In Building Research and Information 29(1). p.12-20
Abstract
The purposes of this study were to ascertain whether Swedish construction companies measure the impact of their quality systems (such as ISO 9000) and, if so, whether the ‘balanced scorecard’ approach is a useful technique as a measure of performance. The balanced scorecard approach requires each organization to look at itself from four different perspectives to provide a more comprehensive view of organizational performance: the ?nancial perspective, the customer perspective, the process perspective, the innovation and learning perspective. Twelve Swedish construction sector companies (clients, architectural-engineering consultants, contractors) with well-established quality systems were studied. The results indicate two important points.... (More)
The purposes of this study were to ascertain whether Swedish construction companies measure the impact of their quality systems (such as ISO 9000) and, if so, whether the ‘balanced scorecard’ approach is a useful technique as a measure of performance. The balanced scorecard approach requires each organization to look at itself from four different perspectives to provide a more comprehensive view of organizational performance: the ?nancial perspective, the customer perspective, the process perspective, the innovation and learning perspective. Twelve Swedish construction sector companies (clients, architectural-engineering consultants, contractors) with well-established quality systems were studied. The results indicate two important points. First, the balanced scorecard can be successfully used to measure the performance of quality systems in the construction process. Second, the organization and learning perspective is neglected in the Swedish construction process. The use of the balanced scorecard highlighted the fact that a lack of balance often exists between the four perspectives. While it is tempting to conclude that investments in quality systems increase organizational performance, there is little (if any) evidence that this is the case. Many investments in quality systems appear to be based more on blind faith than on facts. Tools are only valuable if they improve results, there is a need for further understanding the costs and bene?ts of quality systems in engineering and construction organizations. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
management systems, ISO 9000, organizational performance, quality assessment, balanced scorecard
in
Building Research and Information
volume
29
issue
1
pages
12 - 20
publisher
Taylor & Francis
external identifiers
  • scopus:0035062875
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
50870525-b776-4a17-b55e-253bdd5be455 (old id 1469105)
alternative location
http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/routledg/rbri/2001/00000029/00000001/art00002
date added to LUP
2009-09-23 10:16:19
date last changed
2017-01-01 08:08:24
@article{50870525-b776-4a17-b55e-253bdd5be455,
  abstract     = {The purposes of this study were to ascertain whether Swedish construction companies measure the impact of their quality systems (such as ISO 9000) and, if so, whether the ‘balanced scorecard’ approach is a useful technique as a measure of performance. The balanced scorecard approach requires each organization to look at itself from four different perspectives to provide a more comprehensive view of organizational performance: the ?nancial perspective, the customer perspective, the process perspective, the innovation and learning perspective. Twelve Swedish construction sector companies (clients, architectural-engineering consultants, contractors) with well-established quality systems were studied. The results indicate two important points. First, the balanced scorecard can be successfully used to measure the performance of quality systems in the construction process. Second, the organization and learning perspective is neglected in the Swedish construction process. The use of the balanced scorecard highlighted the fact that a lack of balance often exists between the four perspectives. While it is tempting to conclude that investments in quality systems increase organizational performance, there is little (if any) evidence that this is the case. Many investments in quality systems appear to be based more on blind faith than on facts. Tools are only valuable if they improve results, there is a need for further understanding the costs and bene?ts of quality systems in engineering and construction organizations.},
  author       = {Landin, Anne and Nilsson, Carl-Henric},
  keyword      = {management systems,ISO 9000,organizational performance,quality assessment,balanced scorecard},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {1},
  pages        = {12--20},
  publisher    = {Taylor & Francis},
  series       = {Building Research and Information},
  title        = {Do quality systems really make a difference?},
  volume       = {29},
  year         = {2001},
}