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The importance of keeping quality focus during difficult times

In recent years, Greece and most of Europe is experiencing an intense economic crisis.
The impact on the market is direct and reflects in growing number of small and medium size enterprises across all sectors of the economy that are forced to go out of business.
During these difficult times the competition grows, only the best survive and there is need for giving added value to products and services.
Nowadays, companies more than ever need to differentiate from the competition by developing new strategies and creating competitive advantages. The target should be not only to offer lower prices, which is not always easy in view of the growing international competition, but also to provide products and services of higher quality in order to obtain customer’s satisfaction and ensure a long term cooperation which is extremely important, especially during economic crisis.
The new strategies that have to be developed from small and medium size enter-prises, based on principles of management are indicatively:
• focus and fast adaptation on customer satisfaction
• exploitation of the potential / abilities of human resources in developing niche products
• flexibility to meet specific requirements and take advantage of   market opportunities
• original / innovative products & services.
All these strategies are strongly related to quality objectives thus showing the importance of focusing on quality.
 Providing high quality products and services makes the difference in a competitive environment. An organization which invests in targeting high quality products and services makes a commitment to continual improvement (better resource management, work-action standardization and controlled monitoring, time saving, reduced operating costs, increased productivity, internal auditing and reviewing etc.). Operating in accordance to the requirements of quality management systems, results in a continuous process and product control thus reducing non-conforming products and services and leading to lower costs for corrective actions. Working under terms of quality improves the image of the company and its products thus leading to sales increase. High quality products and services lead to lower costs and also to an increase of income. Moreover, quality means exploitation of the potential and abilities of human resources by continuous training which guarantees best product characteristics and increase of customer confidence.
At difficult times focusing on quality is a pure profit and competitive advantage of high importance when added value of product and services is critical.  High level quality products improve the company's reputation, increase profits, reduce production costs and create conditions for the company to acquire the largest possible share of the market.

Athina Pigka

MS auditor
MIRTEC Delegate to IQNet

A\' Industrial area
P.O. Box 13
38500 Volos