Education and training is the most common approach to supplier development and improvement. A purchaser may provide training in statistical process control, quality improvement techniques, just-in-time delivery or any other crucial performance area. In order for purchasing to adequately assess and aid suppliers in improving quality, purchasers need to become familiar with the important components of quality management. In many organizations, purchasing may request the assistance of quality and engineering departments in assisting with the supplier quality training. Purchasing companies emphasize four areas of quality training with their suppliers: 1) Total quality management and quality improvement training, 2) statistical quality control techniques training, 3) training focusing on integrating quality into the design of products and processes to reduce variability, and 4) training in problem solving techniques.
Sources: Monczka, R., Trent, R., & Handfield, R. (1998). Purchasing and Supply Chain Management. Cincinnati, OH: South Western College Publishing.
Dobler, D.W., & Burt, D.N. (1996). Purchasing and Supply Management. (6th ed.). New York:McGraw Hill.