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The Deming Award

Piyush 2015-10-13

The Deming Award is the one of most prestigious global Quality award. It is presented to individuals and companies for achieving performance excellence through the application of Total Quality Management (TQM) concepts and the techniques. It is the highest and the only award that can be challenged by any company from any country. The award was instituted in the year 1951 by the Union of Japanese Scientists and Engineers (JUSE) in commemoration of Late Dr. W Edwards Deming. Dr. Deming, fondly known as the father of Quality revolution, was a renowned scholar, teacher, statistician, and author. He published hundreds of research papers, articles and books on a wide range of subjects.

The Deming Award is present annually in two categories – the Deming Prize for Individuals and the Deming Application Prize.

“Quality is everyone’s responsibility”

Dr Deming was born in Sioux City, Iowa on October 14, 1900. He attended college at the University of Wyoming to earn a B.S. degree in Engineering. He earned a master’s degree in physics and mathematics from University of Colorado and later did a doctorate in mathematical physics from Yale University. In 1927, he met Walter Shewhart, who influenced his way of life. Shewhart was a physicist at Bell Telephone Labs who invented the statistical control chart.

Initially he taught theoretical physics but gradually his inclination grew towards statistics. He started contributing with papers and lectures towards the improved use of statistical theory in organization, consumer research, design of product, and production.

Guru DemingPhoto Courtesy: Google

In 1936, he started working for the United States Census Bureau as an advisor in statistical sampling techniques and this is where statistical techniques of quality improvement were used for the first time.

Along with Shewhart, he created a model for Continuous Improvement, well known as the “Plan-Do-Check-Act” (PDCA) cycle, which is the basic principle of TQM. He believed that more than 90% of the problems, incorrect services or defects occur due to system errors rather than a careless worker or a defective machine. Deming’s philosophy of continual improvement of products, services, systems and people is being practiced by organisations across the world now.

 The TQM initiative at RSB Transmissions

 RSB Transmissions, one of our clients, has been implementing several quality initiatives like ISO certification, quality circles etc. They started preparing for the Deming prize and conducted a TQM diagnosis to start its implementation their Factory. This uncovered a lot of areas that required improvement in processes as well as in principles.

The TQM diagnosis imparted deeper understanding and clarity on their approach to quality, like what areas should be addressed, who should get involved in what activities, etc. Thus they began delving further into strategic aspects or policy management, managing the day-to-day operations, for stability, incremental improvements, etc. This initiative electrified the organisation and winds of change caught nearly everybody from top management to the front line workers. The challenge was to bring a paradigm shift across the organisation to look at improvement activities as fundamentals for achieving goals and objectives.

On 13th November, 2013, RSB Transmission India Ltd, Auto Division became the first company in Pune to win the Deming Application prize. The prize covered two more units of the organisation viz the Jamshedpur Plant & Pant Nagar Plant, India

Mr RK Behera, Chairman, RSB Group, received the coveted Deming Prize from Mr. Masahiro Sakane, Vice Chairman, Deming Prize Committee, JUSE, in a sublime function at Keidnanren Hall, Tokyo Japan. Mr M Sankaranarayanan President – Auto Vertical and Mr. G Krishnasami, VP (TQM) were also present at the ceremony.

Mr. RK Behra receiving Deming Prize from Mr. Masahiro Sakane

Mr. RK Behra receiving Deming Prize from Mr. Masahiro Sakane

Accepting the award, Mr. RK Behera said that TQM implementation has resulted in significant improvements in all performance indicators. He further added that TQM is thoroughly institutionalized at RSB and embedded into the gene of every employee.

Mr. SK Behera, Vice Chairman & Managing Director, who was involved in every stage of RSB’s Deming TQM journey, said that “At RSB quality has no finish line. We will always continue to enhance our quality, technology and management practices to delight our stakeholders”. He also took the opportunity to congratulate the RSB Team for its commitment and hard work. He further added that in a few years, the company will vie for the highest Deming Award – The Deming Grand Prize.

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