Advances in technology have rapidly changed the way society views quality. It’s gotten to the point where most of us are borderline addicted to the ability to “click” to create a rating or indicate our like or dislike of something. Sites like Yelp and Glassdoor have become our new gauges for quality, but should they be?
The problem with most views on quality is that they are based on a seemingly finite end point. However, quality is not an end state; it is a process. Our ability to measure quality must be distinctive for each instance of what we are measuring, and it must take into account the process that enables us to not only calculate it, but put in place a means to continually manage it to ensure increasingly better outcomes.
This way of thinking significantly changes the way we should be viewing our current online world of ratings. For example, I might give two stars to a fast food chain while giving five stars to a fine dining restaurant and yet, if you were to measure the output based on a defined set of quality metrics, you may find that the fast food chain actually did a better job of adhering to them. In other words, just because I don’t like greasy, fat-laden burgers doesn’t mean they weren’t prepared the way they were supposed to be.
You can see how this has a much greater impact in the business world. When you’re rolling out a large enterprise mobile solution that’s going to change the way people do their jobs in fundamental ways, for example, you need to account for a quality lifecycle that addresses the whole picture. It needs to take into account the desired benefits of the solution, the inherent change management that needs to occur to ensure buy-in, the risk management factors that need to be considered, and the plan for adaptability in the long term. Only when you look at all of these factors can you begin to truly measure how well the solution works for the company.
At VIP, we’ve built a business out of understanding the individual needs of each of our clients and mapping them to specific quality plans that produce true, long-term results. It isn’t about a certain number of “stars,” it’s about distinctive success.