Purpose: The purpose of the framework here proposed is to introduce an industrial culture within the service organizations. Concepts such as employees empowerment; ownership; continuous improvement; together with the systematic implementation of quantitative methods builds the organizational basis for achieving operational excellence in services; reducing costs and increasing service quality.
Methodology/approach: The framework here proposed uses and integrates several methodologies. Quality Function Deployment is largely used in order to support the â€śhardâ€ť phase of the framework. Kanoâ€™s model of customer requirements has been integrated in the Quality Function Deployment structure by means of an original method developed by the authors; introducing a so-called Non-Quality Priority Number (similar to the FMEAâ€™s Risk Priority Number) that in combination with a so-called Quality Priority Number drives the decisions for improvement towards operational excellence. Moreover the â€śsoftâ€ť phase of the framework introduces methods such as Failure Mode and Effect Analysis and Total Productive Maintenance in order to improve the service organizationâ€™s operational competence and culture; increasing at the same time the sense of ownership and the commitment for improvement of front line workers.
Findings: Through this paper it has been shown that industrial methods for operational excellence can be adapted and transferred to the service sector with a potential for significant improvements in particular for those services with a high degree of tangible factors. Allowing in this way to achieve outstanding results also without significant investments.
Keywords: Quality Function Deployment; Total Productive Maintenance; FMEA; service operational excellence; commitment and empowerment; operational culture for excellence