An Evaluation of Knowledge and Use of Total Quality Management Tools by Public Legal Services Operations Management: A Case of Blantyre Legal Aid Department

A successful implementation of Total Quality Management (TQM) is one of the ways of improving organisations. However, preliminary evaluation of whether of an organisation would be receptive to TQM before implementation is imperative.

This study, therefore, evaluated whether employees at Blantyre Legal Aid Department (LAD) in Malawi have the knowledge and use of concepts and tools necessary for TQM implementation. In addition, this study also determined other critical factors necessary for TQM implementation in the said organisation.

The study hypothesized that TQM may help Blantyre LAD to deal with the challenges it is currently facing. Therefore, a mixed approach to research was used to find out whether employees at Blantyre LAD have the knowledge and use of TQM philosophy necessary to meet the organisation’s challenges. A random sample frame of 24 out 32 employees was also used in the study to arrive at scientific findings.

The overall findings on the knowledge and use of TQM by employees at Blantyre LAD had a mean score of 1.6 and a standard deviation of 0.1 confirming lack of knowledge and TQM systems at TQM. The study confirmed the existence of critical success factors for the TQM implementation at Blantyre LAD with a mean closer to 3 at a standard deviation of 0.8.  Consequently, the study recommended that all employees at Blantyre LAD be trained in TQM and that critical success factors for TQM implementation should be strengthened thereat.

The implications of the results and recommendations of the study are that employees at Blantyre LAD need the TQM to improve the quality of public service delivery. In addition TQM can be successfully implemented thereat; therefore, the study recommends a step by step introduction and implementation of TQM at Blantyre LAD.

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Edith Chimusoro
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