An assessment of the effectiveness of Quality Assurance Systems in the construction industry
More than two decadesh avep asseds incet he introductiono f Quality Assurance Systems in the form of BS 5750 / ISO 9000 yet the effectiveness of these systems are still a matter of controversy and debate. Although the implementationo f Quality AssuranceS ystemsin the construction industry has been slow to emerge, most large construction organisations are currently implementing such systems. Much has been written about the advantages and disadvantages of Quality Assurance Systems but unfortunately without any direct reference to any hard data. Most of the reported advantages and disadvantages are based purely on perceptionsa ndv iews of individualsi nvolved. The British Standards Institution (BSI) acts as a collaborating establishment for this research. This is the first research that attempts to assess the effectiveness of Quality Assurance Systems, in the construction industry. Basedo n datac ollectedf rom literature,c onstructionc ompaniesa nde xpertsi n the field of Quality Management, the research provides a better understanding of the objectivity of available data regarding the effectiveness of QA Systems and examinesth e possibilityo f fordingr eliablem easures. This thesis shows that no construction company has managed to assess the effectiveness of its Quality Assurance Systems in an objective manner. Regarding measureso f the effectivenesso f QA Systems,m ost expertsb elievedt hat such measures are very important because an organisation must justify the existence of such systems, which are considered as overheads. However, all experts declared 1 that they are not aware of any construction company that has managed to assess the effectiveness of its ISO 9000 in any reliable manner. This research is of a particular value to construction companies who are considering implementing an ISO 9000 as well as those companies that are already implementing such systems.