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Total Quality Management Apple Essay


Apple Inc. Is an American multinational electronics and software company established by Steven Jobs and Stephen Wozniak on April 1, 1976, in Cupertino, California. Apple Inc. Has become the market leader in their industry by supplying price worthy products which possess high value in terms of their genius technological design from their I- pods, I-phones to Macbook and extending it to their software like I-tunes and games which are at reasonable prices. The main competitors in their industry are Microsoft, Blackberry, Nintendo, Sony, Rhapsody, DELL, Nokia, HP, Samsung and LG. The Apple is known for their innovation in the technology and so do is supply chain. Apple has become a world leader in the personal electronic entertainment industry. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online stores. The company reinvented the mobile phone with its revolutionary iPhone and application stores, and has recently introduced its magical iPad that is defining the future of mobile media and computing devices.

The Apple Store, which is a retail store owned and operated by Apple Inc., has opened 283 stores as of December 2009, which are located in 10 countries. The company’s products are also sold worldwide through its online stores, its direct sales force, and third-party wholesalers, resellers, and value-added resellers. Music, audio books, ipod games, music videos, episodes of television programs, and movies can be downloaded off the itunes Store on Mac or Windows computers, and on the ipod Touch and iphone. Apple’s most popular products include their line of Macintosh personal computers, ipod portable media players, and the iphone. Apple Inc. is such a large corporation that it has all levels of management from upper to lower. The organization has all types of managers including line managers whose work directly contributes to the production of apples goods and services. They also have staff managers who use their special technical expertise to support line workers (marketing, accounting, human resources, and legal services).

The company has both functional managers, who are responsible for one area of activity, and general managers, who are responsible for complex areas. Steve Jobs the CEO and Co-Founder of Apple Inc. is known for having a temperamental management style. He has gone against the traditional management style, being strict with employees causing some fear but also praising them. Jobs is a perfectionist who pays close attention to detail, which can drive some of his subordinates crazy from his constant demands. He has no compromise “attitude when developing products for Apple. He creates many prototypes and mock-ups which are constantly being edited and revised by being passed back and forth between designers, engineers, programmers, and managers, and then back again.

His obsession with excellence has created an amazing development process which turns out great products. Apple Inc. Is very modern in everything they do which has caused them to already follow some of the common trends including: shorter chains of command, less unity of command, wider spans of control and more delegation and empowerment. Today, technology companies are starting to not talk about their product, rather the solutions or customer experience that is offered. The organization is one of the most competitive because it is constantly being one of the first to look to new trends to improve, while others companies are still trying to compete and keep up with Apple’s trends. Trends of today in the technology industry include: the demand for excellence, the pursuit of great design, the instinct for marketing, and the insistence on ease of use and compatibility.

These trends have been with Jobs and Apple since the beginning, which has allowed it to succeed in what it has become today. Apple remains the last and only vertical integration company, meaning they make their own hardware and software, which is their greatest strategic advantage. Apple has seen its strong corporate brand transform into a strong corporate reputation. (Nielsen) The company’s popularity did not translate into a strong reputation until recently, when it started to build a profile outside of its products, he adds. “Today Apple is seen as a company that is delivering on all 7 dimensions of reputation, and this broader reputation platform proved its value for Apple when it was able to maintain its high ranking despite the loss of its iconic leader Steve Jobs.

Apple Products


To meet up the customer demands and to go beyond customer demands, Apple Inc uses the advance design concepts and product engineering in highly competitive world-wide markets while concentrating on profitable expansion for the business. To make sure steadiness in working across all the functions of the business, Apple Inc uses integrated team work in every stage of project and also to ensure the improve programmed objectives for, quality, cost and timeliness. To attain high levels in process design and assurance, Apple Inc uses computer assisted information technologies preface of creative quality tools and techniques while ensuring training employees in new skills. Apple Inc ensures the steadiness in delivery of the product in line with design specifications and quality objectives in launch process, manufacturing and quality. Apple Inc with the range of world class supplier base and their involvement all through the project life time helps to attain the world class standards of quality and delivery. Not only physical attributes of a product are related by Total quality management, customer satisfaction and the levels of service provided are also related.

In the customer point of view it is not that the product should have desired feature, in addition to that the product should be available in a suitable manner and on time. Hence key importance of logistics management is total quality. Total Quality Management involves all the internal and external members to the supply chain to meet all the customer requirements at the lowest achievable cost. Apple Inc implements Total Quality Management with the commitment and support from the top management by maintaining a customer centric focus in all of its services, products and processes. The organization built this empire by sustaining the Four Basic Values establish from its conception. Honesty; Ensures Apple demonstrate honesty and high ethical standards in all business dealings. Respect; Treat customers, suppliers, employees, and others with respect and courtesy. Confidentiality; Protect the confidentiality of Apple’s information and the information of our customers, suppliers, and employees.

Compliance; Ensure that business decisions comply with all applicable laws and regulations. These simple values have transformed Apple from a two man operation into the global juggernaut of today (Apple Inc., 2011). The adaptive design works well for Apple Inc.’s competitive environment, which demands flexibility in dealing with the constantly changing conditions. Internal teamwork is encouraged in the company because of the demand for total quality management and competitive advantage. Improving human skills creates a better ability for Jobs and others to work well with each other in cooperation. Less intimidation and threat of job loss in the organization would improve the quality of work life at Apple. Apple sales associates are trained not to sell, but rather to help customers solve problems.

Employees receive no sales commissions and have no sales quotas; this epitomizes the Total Quality Management (TQM) principle that we are taught in our operations management classes. Employees in a TQM environment focus primarily on the customer. Mission statement of Apple is to do business that provide safe working conditions, treat employee with dignity and respect, use environmentally responsible manufacturing process, commit to a comprehensive Supplier Code of Conduct, integrating health and safety management practices, offer technological innovative products and services, and bring best personal computing experiences to students, educators, and consumers around the globe.

Strategy formulation for Apple is the sole durability, irreplaceable assets, non-transferrable image and loyalty of the company. Since competitive performance-production cost, quality, product and process technology, and global market is greatly inferior to its other rivals, the only opportunity for survival was to pursue a strategy founded upon Apple’s image advantage, while simultaneously minimizing Apple’ disadvantages in other capabilities. The figure below illustrates the product life cycle and the position of apple in that life cycle.

Apples Product Life Cycle

As per the figure given below, it is clear that apple’s product line in the industry is comparatively low than DELL, HP, and Samsung. But the price that they offer their product is very high when compared to the above mentioned competitors because their product worth is very high due to their excellent technology offered by them to the industry.


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