Cost of poor quality (CoPQ)
In operations improvement, Cost of poor quality is a common management term. Sum total of all the costs that are generated due to defective material produced by a system is CoPQ. There are various costs defined in management systems for this. You can read more about CoPQ at iSixSigma.
A naive example
Since, management example for CoPQ can be complicated by jargon. So, I am taking liberty of making it very layman with few variations in explanation. The context is very India-centric here. There is lot of corruption in road construction projects in Indian cities. Almost every year during rain (otherwise too at some places), these roads are full with potholes. Some people say – you need to search road within the potholes. Why go to any other city – Mumbai is a living example of the same. These roads result in – untoward events (possible serious accidents), high cost of vehicle maintenance and repairs, poor vehicle mileage and at times backache to the travelers even with good quality shock-absorbers of the vehicle.
The evident cost, in case of Mumbai roads alone, is repairing same patch of road in single season at least 3 times.
Example of CoPQ In life
Terrorists – they are an example of CoPQ to society, they waste their life as well as killing other people. Say one of the person’s killed is an educated, married person with a child in his 30s. Death of this person is a loss to the Society, a talent who added to the GDP. The loss to the GDP is for about 20+ years the person could do. Family and child lost a support system. This loss of support could eventually result in inability to blossom and become a better contributor to the society. Society can be better off if a terrorist commits suicide without causing any other damage. Though it is a loss again to the society that a person is dead without adding any value to the society, however it is better than the trouble that person could be to the world.
Depression of an individual is CoPQ for self and society. The society is losing time and skills of this depressed person. Actually, interdependent co-arising plays an important role in our society. CoPQ can be derived from interdependent co-arising too. If we understand the concept of interdependent co-arising society can reduce terrorists and depression patience.
How to reduce CoPQ for society?
When I was thinking about what we humans ban do to reduce the cost, I came back to the same old point – meditation, spirituality and teachings of Buddha and Jain Thirthankars. Both Jainism and Buddhism emphasis on concepts such as non-violence, non-stealing, fidelity etc. Corruption is a type of stealing and terrorism is violence. If one gives proper heed to the virtues, roads will be of good quality and if one meditates regularly his quality of live will improve multi-fold. In essence, practicing these principles the Cost of poor quality can be reduced drastically.
Image source – Cost of Poor Quality – pt4 youtube video