Figure 1: Physical and Mental Peaks during the day 21
Figure 2: Graphical Representation of the ABC Analysis. 28
Figure 3: ABC Implementer in Companies 29
Figure 4: The 80/20 Predictable Imbalance 32
Figure 5: Basic Pareto Chart 33
Figure 6: Example of Eisenhower Method 35
Figure 7: The Hierarchy of POSEC Method 38
Figure 8: Example of a Histogram 39
Figure 9: Cultural Factors Found in TQM/Six Sigma 45
Figure 10: Holton's Factors Model 54
Figure 11: Example of a Contingency Cost Framework 64
Table 1: ResCare Auditing Process 6
Table 2: Distribution of ABC 29
Table 3: Total of Inventory in a Company 30
Table 4: Total of Inventory In Company using ABC Analysis 31
Table 5: The Urgent and Important Matrix 34
The purpose of this analysis is to provide a qualitative and quantitative investigation of ResCare's opportunities in regard to quality assurance and related issues. ResCare has stated that the firm serves more than a million clients annually through a network of 50,000 employees at thousands of locations in the U.S. And all over the world. In San Diego, CA, the company operates four offices that serve four thousand low income clients who are aided by San Diego County's Welfare-to-Work (WTW) under the California Work and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs) program. A literature review was performed to identify how the company could address the lack of management support and how implementing a risk management framework in the quality assurance (QA) auditing process at ResCare will reduce the time frame and cost for training material preparation. The study methodology included a mix of experimental and theoretical approaches to explore the employees' perception of time management, risk identification, and the QA department performance in ResCare Incorporation. The primary objective in adopting this mixed methodology was to investigate the use time management methods by the company workers regardless if they were aware of the full potentials of applying time management methods. Based on the literature reviewed, it is recommended that ResCare form a steering committee to guide the QA improvement project. Furthermore, various proactive and reactive recommendations are made for the steering committee to use as a framework for investigation of how the state of QA could be improved at ResCare in the future.
Chapter One -- Introduction
In today's globalized society there is a critical need for process improvement, particularly in quality assurance (QA) of project management in both the production and service industries. Markets have become more competitive while costumers require the highest quality for the value they paid. Furthermore, quality assurance should be emphasized throughout all stages of the project, especially at the beginning. It is easier to design in quality than to fix problems that are raised as the project nears its final stage. Additionally, process improvement is affected by many factors; time is considered one of more dominant factors that prevent change from occurring.
The purpose of this study was to analyze the QA auditing process at ResCare, Inc. And provide recommendations to improve their existing process and improve the quality of the services provided. ResCare, Inc. is a for-profit company founded in 1974 in Louisville, Kentucky. The company's name stands for two values reflected in its mission and vision; those values are Respect and Care. The firm specializes in social services. They provide services to community members of various ages and skills to help them overcome their barriers to obtaining employment. They do this by assessing the member's needs and referring them to one of many community services that may help them overcome these barriers. ResCare (2012) states the firm serves more than a million people each year with its nearly 50,000 employees at thousands of locations in the U.S. And all over the world. In San Diego, CA, the company operates four offices that serve four thousand low income clients who are aided by San Diego County's Welfare-to-Work (WTW) under the California Work and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs) program. The company has a Quality Assurance department that conducts monthly audits at all four of the offices to ensure that all clients' cases follow the County Program Guide (CPG) procedures. Furthermore, the QA department works to ensure that the program participants are receiving aid in a timely manner. After auditing these cases and analyzing the greatest source of errors, the QA department provides training to the staff in order to correct the identified errors, avoid repetition of the same error, and improve the quality of the provided services.
Existing Process Issues
The process between conducting the QA audit, identifying the errors, and providing training to the staff is not consistent. It does not follow a specified timeframe and does not target the break from program guidelines which result in the majority of errors. These issues have negatively affected the quality of the services provided to the ResCare customers who are low income families and supported by the Welfare to Work (WTW) program that provides for their short-term financial needs. The total time on aid (TOA) is only 48 months per individual. The company provides case management services for parents or guardians of children under the age of 18 who are considered low income based on total income and the number of household members. They receive various supportive services like childcare, cost of books for school, tools for job retention, cost of clothing for job interviews, and other ancillary payments in order to help them gain employment and self-sufficiency.
The lack of quality improvement processes has affected the company employees' performance and the quality of services provided to the program participants due to repetition of work errors and inadequate knowledge. The case workers are not trained to correct these errors and keep repeating the same errors. In addition changes to policies and procedures identified in the CPG are not disseminated to the employees; these changes should be communicated and emphasized from the top to the bottom of the organizational structure.
The company's contract with the San Diego County is for five years June 2010 through July 2015. This research was conducted during the third contract year. The San Diego County has the right to terminate the contract and transfer the participant cases to another organization at any time within the five-year contract. The company will be at risk for failure if the quality of its services does not improve.
Improving the QA processes at ResCare will also be beneficial to the costumers, since they are the essential part of the project. The community of the low income families in San Diego who are depending on these temporary services to support their children will also be positively impacted. In addition, over a hundred workers who are currently working in this company during the time that the research was conducted will benefit. During the last three years of the contract, some attempts were made to improve the processes within some departments at ResCare; however, the lack of management support and staff turnovers prevented those attempts from succeeding. Hsieh, Rai, Petter, and Ting (2012) discussed management support in an increasing number of organizations to Customer Relationship Management (CRM) in order to support the front line employees who provide direct services to the costumers. However, this method is challenged by the employee's dissatisfaction with other areas like work environment, pressure, benefits, and other issues.
Iosifescu (2009) explained in different study the trainers, or teachers, role as the key factor in any interface quality assurance and the importance of planning flexible-short-term strategies in order to have the ability to be adjusted for the rapid changes in today's globalized world. As a conclusion from the previous two studies, the alliance between management and the employees is the key factor for quality improvement in customer service in any project.
Since the firm's quality of services is related to needy families lives, the quality of those services have to enhanced to the highest level of customer satisfaction. Those costumers are internal, the firms employees, and external as the participant themselves. Golder, Mitra, and Moorman (2012) identified in their research the customer satisfaction as a comparison between the provided quality and the standard of expected quality. Therefore, the expected quality level should…