The field of quality is the discipline and practice of product and service quality assurance and control. In the field of software development, it is the management, development, operation, and maintenance of IT systems and enterprise architectures with a high-quality standard. This definition basically says that quality is “meeting or exceeding customer expectations.
Quality management is the discipline that creates and implements strategies for quality assurance in product development and production as well as software development. Quality directors focus on optimizing product quality, as defined by Dr. W. Edwards Deming.
The field of quality assurance in the United States was in direct response to a quality revolution in Japan following World War II. Japanese manufacturers converted from producing military goods for internal use to producing civilian goods for trade.
At first, the reputation of exported Japanese products was not good, and their goods were shunned by international markets. This led Japanese organizations to explore new ways of thinking about quality, implementing a “total quality” approach by changing the focus from improving products to improving organizational processes.
Now, quality assurance is part of most companies that are building products, including digital products and services.
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected employment and the job market. While it has radically upended life as was previously known in almost every way, there are renewed efforts at work that are frantically working to return businesses and institutions to what was once considered to be normal as quickly as possible – or at least to what will become the ‘new normal’.
2021 has seen a mix of responses as economies start to open up once again now that the distribution of the vaccine has increased. There is much to be hopeful about. The role of the quality director will continue to be important in helping companies – big and small – to prepare for the future.
Technology and service providers face significant disruption to their businesses from COVID-19. Quality directors must evaluate the critical ways in which the pandemic affects their teams so they can mitigate the negative effects and plan for recovery.
While COVID-19 has certainly impacted the quality management profession, a relatively recent survey indicated that, despite the challenges, the profession was poised to make appropriate changes in order to respond with agility and flexibility in order to do what needs to be done.
The hiring of a quality director can affect both your existing team and your bottom line. Look for candidates who are drawn to details, effective delegators, and clear communicators.
A strong quality director will ensure projects are completed properly and on time, according to quality standards, and are staffed appropriately. With a keen eye for detail, a person in this role can help to identify when things are not being completed correctly and/or running properly. They not only identify existing issues, but spearhead efforts to provide solutions and work collaboratively on implementation.
A great hire can help your business improve its reputation as your products will be of the highest quality and will not fail. The manager can also cut down on costs as they can streamline manufacturing processes.
Before we get to exactly how to hire the best quality director, let’s review some of the details.
Quality directors ensure that an organization’s standards for its product or service are consistent. They focus on four main components: quality planning, quality assurance, quality control, and quality improvement. The role is focused not only on product and service quality but also on the means to achieve it.
People in this career use quality assurance and control of processes as well as products to achieve consistency. What a customer wants and is willing to pay for it determines quality. It is a written or unwritten commitment to a known or unknown consumer in the market. Thus, quality can be defined as fitness for intended use or, in other words, how well the product performs its intended function.
Quality directors are also responsible for the following duties:
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quality directors in the U.S.
Total quality directors Employed in the U.S.
Quality directors are employed in various manufacturing industries, some of which are expected to have declining employment due to greater productivity. However, people in this role are responsible for coordinating work activities with the goal of increasing productivity, they will continue to be needed in this capacity. Industries projected to add jobs for these workers include motor vehicle parts manufacturing, machine shops, and pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturing.
The average annual salary for quality directors in Washington was 128k in 2019. The hourly wage averaged $61.30.
Spokane is located on the Inland Northwest, an area on the eastern border of Washington near its border with Montana. The city, named for the indigenous Spokane people, is 4-5 hours away from Seattle, but a world away as far as culture and the city itself.
It’s a historic town, with more than half of the buildings downtown are on the historic register. It also boasts the second-largest urban waterfall in the United States.
Here are a few other things about living and working in Spokane that residents give a thumbs up.
People do state some general “cons” about living and working in Spokane.
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Quality directors will likely face strong competition for open positions, but those who have several years of experience and a bachelor’s degree in industrial management or business administration should have the best prospects. While competition can be fierce, once hired, candidates can expect to be well compensated.
The BLS estimates that the growth of positions in this field will be slower than average, but will still produce a net gain in positions over the next 10 years.
The supply of candidates and demand for open positions have a direct correlation to a company's ability to hire. Download a free Supply and Demand report for quality directors in Spokane, Washington below.
Finding and hiring the best quality director candidates can save you money right away and well into the future.
The costs of making a bad hire are well documented. The cost can run as much as 30% of the employee's first-year earnings according to the US Department of Labor. Bad hires can cost a whopping $240,000 in expenses related to hiring, compensation, and retention per The Undercover Recruiter. 74% of companies who admit they've hired the wrong person for a position lost an average of $14,900 for each bad hire according to CareerBuilder. These statistics support our long-held position that behavioral questions are the best way to get to know your candidates and past behavior is the best indicator of future performance.
The information below comes from the best practices Amtec uses for finding the highest quality candidates.
When defining the role you are creating, we recommend a position profile to fully evaluate the position you are hiring for. You must decide if the engineer can work remotely or must work in Washington. If working in Spokane is essential, make sure you include that in your job posting so candidates can decide how many miles they can commute.
When you are looking to source the best quality candidates for your open positions, make sure you have done the legwork to hire an "A Player". You can do this by making sure your company's perspective is aligned with the current market, you have taken into account the job responsibilities, as well as what type of characteristics you are looking for to fit your company culture. Then proceed to write a job posting to attract high-quality candidates.
Although the goal of this position is ensuring overall quality, the job cannot impact an organization’s quality alone. Teach others the importance of quality and how low and high quality affects the organization. Invite experts to speak to and teach selected personnel about quality. The newly educated personnel can go to their respective departments and educate others on its importance. Implement monthly best-practice workshops to keep the organization updated on policy and procedure changes, quality programs the company implements, and the company’s quality measures.
You wrote a job posting, posted the position online, and received a lot more resumes than you’d bargained for! Next comes the enormous task of sorting through those resumes to eliminate the ones that are clearly not a good fit. Now, you have a stack of resumes for candidates who have potential. So how do you go about screening the remaining candidates?
It starts on the phone! As a recruiter, the goal of your telephone screening is to learn more about your candidates. You can confirm that they have the educational qualifications and relevant experience, but you also need to determine if they would fit into your company's culture. To make this job easier, use a system to consistently evaluate results. This way you can equally and objectively compare candidates and evaluate their "soft skills", like communication and thinking process. Download Amtec's Professional Assessment Questionnaire below to help with screening candidates.
An individually customized questionnaire that helps assess a candidate's competence with written communication skills, thinking processes, and other relevant skills.
At Amtec, we believe in the power of behavoral interview questions to go beyond the experience and skills listed on the candidate's resume. Although you will want to confirm in the interview that the candidate does indeed have the experience listed on their resume, your assessment needs to go much deeper than that. An interview using behavioral questions can help you determine how well the candidate will fit with your company culture.
Download Amtec's best practices on conducting super effective interviews to find the best candidates and fill your open jobs.
Get the info you need to hire the best quality directorsFree Interview Guide