FORD AND OHIO STATE FORM QUALITY PARTNERSHIP
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Building on a long history of cooperation,
Ford Motor Company and The Ohio State University have formed a
Continuous Quality Improvement Partnership to encourage the
development and communication of knowledge that will accelerate
the practice of Total Quality Management.
The announcement was made here Tuesday (7/12) by John T.
Eby, executive director of Ford's Corporate Strategy Office --
and an Ohio State alumnus -- and E. Gordon Gee, president of the
Ford's Continuous Quality Improvement Partnership with Ohio
State is one of 36 such linkups across America, pairing business
leaders in quality with universities and colleges.
Under the cooperative agreement, Ford will assist Ohio State
in implementing a Total Quality system in the university
environment, encourage the development and inclusion of Total
Quality concepts and processes in various college curricula, and
develop a long-term relationship with the university for
continued research in the methodologies associated with Total
The concept of Total Quality partnerships was conceived in
1991 by Robert Galvin, chairman of the executive committee of
Motorola Inc., and then enthusiastically adopted by companies and
universities that are -- or desire to be -- in the vanguard of
the Total Quality effort.
Total Quality is a people-focused management system that
aims to continually heighten customer satisfaction via improved
quality, increased productivity and reduced costs. Total Quality
concepts include serving all customers -- both internal and
external -- exceptionally well, adapting to change, doing things
right the first time, continuously improving in all aspects of
the business, working together in teams, making decisions based
on facts, measuring outcomes, and managing by collaboration and
"Industry, by necessity, has led in the development of
quality principles, techniques and tools," said Eby. "To be
competitive and successful players in today's global market,
business and industry need the educational and research resources
of the American university system to improve capabilities in the
evolving areas of Total Quality and customer satisfaction.
"In addition, American universities supply the private and
public sectors with their greatest and most unique resource --
educated people. Through such programs as the Total Quality
partnerships, business and industry will be working with
universities to ensure that their graduates are ready to 'hit the
ground running' -- and that they will not only understand quality
principles and concepts, but also be able to help us, their
employers, to move forward in our delivery of quality goods and
In remarks announcing the association, Gee said: "Like
Ford, Ohio State is committed to quality, and we are pleased to
join Ford in this important partnership. With advice and
experience provided by Ford, we will offer opportunities to our
students to learn the concepts of Total Quality and will apply
the concepts to the operations of the university itself.
"The four colleges represented in this partnership --
Business, Engineering, Agriculture and Medicine -- each will
bring the unique challenges of their diverse disciplines to this
dialogue on quality."
In addition to Ohio State, Ford is partnering with four
other universities in the Total Quality initiative: Michigan
State University, Wayne State University, Howard University and
the University of Texas at Austin.
Launch of the Ford partnerships will begin with a Total
Quality Symposium for Ohio State Sept. 11-14, 1994, in Dearborn,
Mich. Symposia for the other universities will be conducted
through 1995 and conclude with the University of Texas in Spring
Ford selected The Ohio State University as its first partner
because Ford has had a long and rewarding history with the
university. The company historically has recruited there,
particularly for technical and business graduates, and now boasts
nearly 500 Ohio State alumni among its ranks. A number of them
occupy senior management positions, including Edward Hagenlocker,
president, Ford Automotive Operations (FAO); Robert Rewey, group
vice president -- Marketing and Sales, FAO, and Murray
Reichenstein, vice president-controller, FAO.
Ford also recently funded a $1.25-million chair in electro-
mechanical systems for Ohio State's College of Engineering.
Ohio is known informally as Ford's "second home," with major
manufacturing and assembly facilities in Lorain, Avon Lake, Brook
Park (three), Walton Hills, Maumee, Lima, Sharonville, Batavia
and Sandusky. Ford has more than 24,000 employees in the state,
making the company one of Ohio's largest private-sector
Contact: Jerree Martin, Ford Public Affairs, (313) 322-1300 or
Steve Sterrett, Ohio State University Communications,
COLLEGE DEANS SUPPORT OHIO STATE'S
PARTNERSHIP WITH FORD MOTOR COMPANY
Four colleges are representing The Ohio State University in
a Continuous Quality Improvement Partnership with Ford Motor
Company. The partnership will encourage teaching and research in
the practice of Total Quality Management. Representing Ohio
State are the College of Engineering, the College of Medicine,
the College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, and
the Max M. Fisher College of Business. The deans of these four
colleges offered the following comments on the new partnership:
Jose B. Cruz Jr., dean of the College of Engineering (who serves
as coordinator for the college deans in this partnership)
"Our main product (as a college) is to have better educated
engineers and architects. When we can improve our product, both
our graduates and the companies that employ them are better off."
"In looking at how we can improve this process of producing
better engineers, we'll undoubtedly be looking at the concepts
which are predominant in industry for improving total quality.
This partnership is very important to us because we can call on
Ford's experience and expertise."
"As you can imagine, these concepts do not readily transfer
to an academic setting. When you talk about how to improve
teaching and research using Total Quality Management principles,
there will be some problems of discovering exactly how we can
apply these principles. Part of our partnership is to extend the
frontiers of knowledge and the applicability of these
"All organizations are involved in change. We must be able
to change more effectively. One of the things Ford wants
research on is how you affect cultural change in an organization.
That's very similar to what we've been going through in
restructuring the university. Ford hopes to get something out of
"Continuous Quality Improvement is very similar to strategic
planning -- planning and having an agenda for ourselves. The
whole thing is to continue to strive to improve our engineering
education process. That's the bottom line."
Joseph A. Alutto, dean of the Max M. Fisher College of Business
"From the college's point of view, we have an interest in
quality from at least two different perspectives. The first is
that quality improvement processes are important to what we
teach, both from a substantive and research point of view. From
an instructional-programmatic point of view, we hope to leverage
on the relationship with Ford, since they are, in many ways, a
world leader in applying quality improvement concepts. That's
"The second issue is that we have an interest in quality
improvement processes from an operational point of view: looking
at the way we function as a college, trying to improve the
quality of our processes and our product, and learning from the
interaction we have with Ford."
"It will probably be a learning experience for us, as well
as for Ford. They will see the extent to which some of their
improvement principles work and the boundaries that limit how
they can apply these concepts. It will work for both parties."
Bobby D. Moser, vice president for agricultural administration
and dean of the College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental
"I'm looking forward to learning from a company like Ford,
which has already implemented this particular management style,
and in seeing how we can take some of those principles and apply
them in an academic setting."
"I'm very interested in quality, even though Ford is turning
out cars and trucks and we're turning out students, research
projects and extension education programs. Quality to us is very
important. If we can learn from Ford and apply those principles
to our setting, then I think it will give us a different focus on
who our customers are and how we can focus on achieving this
"Some of the things that we do in our extension programs
right now use these same types of principles. We basically do a
needs assessment -- asking the customers what are their needs.
We do this when we have a group of agriculture people around the
table and say, 'What kind of programs do we need this year to be
of benefit to you?' We assess the needs and then develop
educational programs to meet those needs. We can take those same
kinds of principles and broaden and apply them to our teaching
program and to our research program."
Manuel Tzagournis, vice president for health services and dean of
the College of Medicine
"We don't know for sure what our part is going to be, except
that we, first of all, want to learn about quality improvement
and then, secondly, try to apply it to the areas here that we
feel might be most useful, based on some of the experiences of
industry. We will look forward to learning what the specifics of
that will be."
"We have implemented quality improvement practices in
University Hospitals. For example, there are teams that have
gotten together to develop some of the principles of Total
Quality Management. So we've already made a start."
"What is new and will represent a new level of quality
management, or quality improvement, is in the academic arena.
>From the perspective of formal quality improvement measures,
we've done relatively little at that level."
"Through this partnership with Ford, we want to learn about
quality improvement and try to apply it where it will be most
[Submitted by: STERRETT (email@example.com)
Tue, 12 Jul 1994 17:29:50 -0500 (EST)]
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