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    Quality Management

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    You are a project manager of two projects for a facial care product development firm, ZJZ Cosmetics. ZJZ Cosmetics creates products for other firms to brand and market; they do not sell the products they create to the final customer, only business-to-business. You are in the research and development department and your research specialty is on improving the manufacturing process by investigating new product components. One of the projects you are managing is a "pure" research project. You are looking at five different compounds trying to determine which will be the most reliable and cost-effective base for a new make-up base.
    Your other project is for one of your new clients, a pharmaceuticals firm. Your client will be using one of your existing products as the base for some medications that will be used to treat skin problems. This is an existing product for your client and one of the major revenue generators. The client moved to you as a supplier because of quality control problems with one of the former suppliers. The former supplier would deliver wrong product, expired product, product close to expiration, mislabeled product. It got to the point with the former supplier that the returns and waste were greater than the volume of proper, usable product.
    You have been identified as the project manager for the project to implement quality control processes that will be used for the manufacture, monitoring, and distribution of this product. You are not sure if the research processes are considered part of the scope. Your new client will be auditing your quality processes and controls in 4 months, so everything must be ready by then.
    This is a significant project for your company. This new client is the largest client for ZJZ Cosmetics, and if successful, this provides an entrance into a whole new market. Quality has always been addressed for existing products, but never at the level of rigor and discipline required for a pharmaceutical product regulated by multiple governments. Historically, ZJZ has been a flat organization, and all the department managers have been responsible for quality; there has been no quality department. It is not clear if a quality department will be created or not; that is part of the project's scope. This quality initiative dubbed Growth Through Quality (with the tagline of Excellent Product + Quality Processes = Future Growth) has been communicated to the entire company by the CEO. You know you have senior management's support.
    You just met with your boss, Sharon, the vice president of research and development. Sharon emphasized that your project will be responsibility for
    ? Defining the goals and scope of the quality initiative.
    ? Defining organizational structure, roles, and responsibilities relative to quality controls.
    ? Developing the quality policies, processes, procedures, and the associated controls.
    ? Communicating, training, and implementing the new procedures.
    ? Defining and implementing the quality measurement program.

    You just received a voicemail from another project manager, Sue, who heard about the labeling process project. Sue is leading a project to replace the software used for labeling product and tracking product while in storage. Her team has already gathered requirements using the current process and analyzed five different software packages. A selection is supposed to be made in the next 2 weeks while your new process is being piloted. Sue is concerned that if she moves ahead before your process is created and requirements identified, none of the products will meet potential new requirements without customizations. Sue would like to meet with you, Sharon, and Sue's manager from the manufacturing department to discuss the next steps.
    Describe what you think the next steps are for both Sue's project and your quality project. Pay special consideration to the impact the new emphasis on quality may have on vendor relationships moving forward.

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    Solution Preview

    The next step certainly for both of us together to sit down and assess the impact of new quality initiatives on the existing processes. This is to make it sure that Sue understands the impact of such changes in advance and make modifications to the software that she is planning to order for the labelling process. If communication gaps will exist at this stage and coordination will be absent, total disaster will take place for the software ordering process.

    It is extremely essential for me to make other department heads and managers understand the impact of new quality initiatives on the ...

    Solution Summary

    Describe what you think the next steps are for both Sue's project and your quality project. Pay special consideration to the impact the new emphasis on quality may have on vendor relationships moving forward.