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Economists rely on the accuracy of models to make complex business decisions. Suspicions about the EFQM model have been vocalized by some of the companies that previously implemented it. Therefore, a critical evaluation of the model became required to validate or invalidate its further use. This paper will provide a summary of such an evaluation.
The evaluation aimed to analyze the relationship between the 2003 version of the model and the data from 68 organizations that implemented it. It begins with background information about the EFQM model. EFQM grew out of the TQM philosophy and was created as a European version of total quality management (Lo, Wiengarten, Humphreys, Yeung, & Cheng, 2013; Sanz-Calcedo et al., 2015). It is often used as a way to achieve ISO 9000 certification that is considered essential to do business in Europe (Sanz-Calcedo et al., 2015). It is intended as a clear way to quality improvement.
The model relies on the company’s work with customers, staff, and society as a whole. Due to the importance of ISO 9000, quality improvement has become an essential part of the business in European industries (Araújo & Sampaio, 2014; Gómez-López, Serrano-Bedia, & López-Fernández, 2016; Gómez-López, López-Fernández, & Serrano-Bedia, 2017). However, the validity of the ISO 9000 standard and the EFQM model has been questioned (Gómez, Costa, & Lorente, 2011), as scientific literature that examined the impact of both has not found a strong relation between them and the success of the company.
The presented research is done with two goals in mind. The first is to provide a material based on real evaluations that have been validated by the EFQM organization staff. The second is to analyze the latest version of the EFQM model because the majority of previous research was based on the 1999 version of the model. Through the PLS method, the researchers tested the available data on the companies and received some conclusive evidence on the model’s impact.
The results have shown that industrial companies had much higher scores than private and public ones about business processes, partnerships, resources, society benefits, and key performance results. Moreover, the people and society results were found not to meet the minimum requirements of the evaluation, which brought additional doubt about the validity of the model. Overall, the researchers found that the model has issues with its definition.
It states that the model should influence strategy, policy, people, society, resources, and partnerships, but it has almost no impact on people, partnerships, and resources. However, it does improve processes, as its TQM-focused design is intended. Therefore, it still has a practical application for some organizations.
The analysis of the EFQM model is significant because it examines an important business model that could be faulty. The results have shown that not all of its elements work as intended, and it should not be utilized by all types of companies. However, its impact on quality improvement should be considered for use in other organizations.
Araújo, M., & Sampaio, P. (2014). The path to excellence of the Portuguese organisations recognised by the EFQM model. Total Quality Management & Business Excellence, 25(5), 427–438.
Gómez, J. G., Costa, M. M., & Lorente, Á. R. M. (2011). A critical evaluation of the EFQM model. International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, 28(5), 484–502.
Gómez-López, R., Serrano-Bedia, A. M., & López-Fernández, M. C. (2016). Motivations for implementing TQM through the EFQM model in Spain: An empirical investigation. Total Quality Management & Business Excellence, 27(11), 1224–1245.
Gómez-López, R., López-Fernández, M. C., & Serrano-Bedia, A. M. (2017). Implementation barriers of the EFQM excellence model within the Spanish private firms. Total Quality Management & Business Excellence, 28(7), 695–711.
Lo, C. K. Y., Wiengarten, F., Humphreys, P., Yeung, A. C. L., & Cheng, T. C. E. (2013). The impact of contextual factors on the efficacy of ISO 9000 adoption. Journal of Operations Management, 31(5), 229–235.
Sanz-Calcedo, J. G., González, A. G., López, O., Salgado, D. R., Cambero, I., & Herrera, J. M. (2015). Analysis on Integrated Management of the Quality, Environment and Safety on the Industrial Projects. Procedia Engineering, 132, 140–145.