Folke Höglund Vice Ordf. SFK Väst

Quality 4.0 leads to better quality work!

Publicerad: 28 October 2020

The increasing digitalisation has led to a paradigm shift that affects virtually everything in our society. Opportunities for organizations' operational excellence are improved.

Modern quality work has been around for about 30 years, and very positive things have happened. We have management systems that are ISO 9001 certified, SIQ Management model and various improvement programs, the most widespread are Lean and Six Sigma. It is now high time for quality development to take advantage of the technological advances in digitization. Quality 4.0 mainly means refining of data, as well as the opportunities that connection provides for the involvement and commitment of the company's employees.

Is Quality 4.0 a new trend?

No, the previous initiatives within the principles, methods and tools of quality work also apply during the Quality 4.0 era. But by using modern technology, the organizations' ability to create more robust and predictable processes, increased customer satisfaction while increasing efficiency will increase. By integrating technology, processes about human aspects, conditions are created for successful quality development.

Quality 4.0 behind Industry 4.0

Industry 4.0 is built around digitization; with data, automation, and the opportunities that connection provides. These technologies will also form the framework of Quality 4.0. Collection of "Big Data" - both quantitative and qualitative (non-numerical) data - via "Internet of Things, IoT" often processed by "Artificial Intelligence, AI". Organizations can obtain valuable information in real time from the entire value chain, from suppliers to customers' applications. Through connection, opportunities that are created for fast and direct communication between employees and management, as well as between processes and employees.

Quality professionals are extremely suitable for an expanded role

Several areas within Quality 4.0 require full or partial specialist competence. Quality professionals are used to managing systems and processes, analyzing and solving problems, and managing and evaluating data. They understand that open communication channels with employees creates engagement through involvement, which is the key to success. They do not have to be super experts in IT or statistics but need to have customer competence and act as a bridge between the business processes and experts. In a longer perspective, it is conceivable that quality professionals are increasingly moving to an analytical role, and why not in a broader field than the quality area?

The Swedish Association for Quality, SFK, will in the coming years focus on Quality 4.0, including the World Quality Day conference this autumn and in connection with other activities.

Together we strengthen Sweden's competitiveness!

– With the right commitment, Sweden has all the prerequisites to lead the development of Quality 4.0, which will contribute to fulfilling SFK's mission

Published 2020-10-28  |  Authored by Folke Höglund