Why do some companies have beautifully laid out stores and loyal customers while others can’t seem to get ahead? The successful stores are better at satisfying customers. Obvious, right? What’s not so obvious is how they do it. It comes down to their operations and their quality control system. Successful companies have invested a lot of time and money into assuring the quality metrics of their products, services, and locations are the highest.
Sometimes, it’s difficult to know when you need to make the call and invest in a quality control system. Here are 3 major signs you need to do just that:
1. Your in-house products perform poorly compared to other products in the store. Or you get a lot of complaints about your in-house items.
Think about it – if your products made in store are continually out-purchased by center-store items, it simply means your customers need more out of you. By having a system for quality control, you will be able to assess why people aren’t putting your store-made products in their carts.
Bonus Sign: You lose customers to other stores that specialize in unique and high-end offerings.
Folks want high quality products, and some of them will even pay more for it. Companies that are gaining customers are putting a heavy focus on quality products and superb customer experience.
2. If I asked you to provide evidence of your safety measures, you would either stare at me with a blank face, or pull out a piece of paper with a bunch of scribbles on it
When I worked for a restaurant we were continuously taking the temperature of our soups to ensure they weren’t too hot or too cool to be safe to consume. We recorded the temperatures on a form that was kept in a binder. This benefits customers because they’re always getting soup that is safe and tasty. This benefits the restaurant in that they can use it as evidence that they serve safe food. The same scenario can be applied to bathroom logs, sweep logs, etc.
If you’re currently practicing this, that is definitely a step in the right direction. However, the accountability piece is missing. On paper logs employees can easily just mark off that something was satisfactory even if it really wasn’t. To ensure the highest quality, some companies will invest in a cheat-proof system.
3. You don’t have a game plan for how to improve your products and services, or your business as a whole.
Companies that do not have a solid quality control system don’t know what they need to do to improve their operations and customer satisfaction. Without a good quality control system, what base do you have to build your goals upon?
Continuous improvement is at the center of quality management. If your company thinks it doesn’t need a quality control system or that it has reached its full potential then you definitely need to invest in one.