Project Integrated Organizational Quality and Performance Management


with Special Reference to Manufacturing



By Prof Dr Pieter Steyn

Cranefield College, South Africa


Prof. Dr. Brane Semolič

LENS Living Lab, Slovenia


The four aspects most affected by the Industry 4.0 economy are customer expectations, product development, collaborative innovation, and organizational forms, while supportive project initiatives play an increasingly important role. Concomitantly, it requires modern organizations to have project and programme management acumen, digital maturity, and leadership focused on sustainability, ethics, and new business models. To achieve this requires an organizational culture and mindset focused on collaboration, agility, and a profound dedication to quality and performance.


The quality management system (QMS) approach calls for all operations activities in organizational value chain processes to be aligned with the critical success factors in the balanced scorecard strategy map, and that process outputs be measured, appraised, and reviewed to ensure performance. Moreover, there must be a focus on continuously improving people, products, processes, and productivity. Streamlining processes to eliminate wasteful activities or steps cuts fixed and variable costs. Streamlining efforts also yield better output quality, timely delivery, and other customer needs and wants. This leads to organizations performing better and revenues increase as demand for products and services increases. Profit potential then appears at lower volumes, thus opening new market opportunities (Steyn, Dec 2012 and March 2013).

Process improvements and organizational performance are guided by having a sound quality management system (QMS) embedded in organizations, including manufacturing firms. Increasingly organizations are following the balanced scorecard approach, which is fundamentally based on a sound value system that includes values, beliefs, and total quality management (TQM) guiding principles. An organization’s vision and mission are also guided by the value system and so is its culture. The same can be said for value chain performance quality. Managing quality and performance improvement resorts under the operations support activities shown in the example from manufacturing Figure 1 (Schonberger & Knod; prep Steyn 2012).

Figure 1: Managing Quality Improvement is an Operations Support Activity

Metrics are very important with respect to continuous improvement initiatives. One of the four pillars of total quality management philosophy is systems thinking, which means that organizations must continuously improve process performance through measurements of key performance indicators, followed by appraisals and where necessary reviews. Moreover, a sound value system leads to collaboratist leadership role modelling excellence ensuring that collaboration between stakeholders in the value chain of the firm is enhanced (Steyn and Semolič, March 2017). Competitive excellence results from this, and a strong focus on customers’ needs and wants emerges.


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How to cite this paper: Steyn, P. and Semolic, B. (2024). Project Integrated Organizational Quality and Performance Management with Special Reference to Manufacturing; PM World Journal, Vol. XIII, Issue IV, April. Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2024/04/pmwj140-Apr2024-Steyn-Semolic-project-integrated-organizational-quality-performance-management.pdf

About the Authors

Prof Dr. Pieter Steyn

Cranefield College
South Africa


Dr. Pieter Steyn is Founder and Principal of Cranefield College, a South African Council on Higher Education / Department of Education accredited and registered Private Higher Education Institution. Cranefield offers an Advanced Certificate, Advanced Diploma, Batchelor of Business Administration degree, Postgraduate Diploma, Master’s degree (MCom), and PhD. He holds the degrees BSc (Eng), MBA and Doctor of Commerce, and is a registered Professional Engineer.

He was formerly professor in the Department of Management, University of South Africa and Pretoria University Business School. He founded the Production Management Institute of South Africa, and in 1979 pioneered Project Management as a university subject at the post-graduate level at the University of South Africa. Prof Steyn also taught at the Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology in Taiwan as a guest lecturer.

He founded consulting engineering firm Steyn and Van Rensburg (SVR). Projects by SVR include First National Bank Head Office (Bank City), Standard Bank Head Office, Mandela Square Shopping Centre (all in Johannesburg), as also, Game City- and The Wheel Shopping Centres (in Durban). He, inter alia, chaired the Commission of Enquiry into the Swaziland Civil Service; and acted as Programme Manager for the Strategic Transformation of the Gauteng Government’s Welfare Department and Corporate Core.

Prof Steyn is a contributing author of the “International Handbook of Production and Operations Management,” (Cassell, London, 1989, ed. Ray Wild) and is the author of many articles and papers on leadership and management. He is a member of the Association of Business Leadership, Industrial Engineering Institute, Engineering Association of South Africa, and Project Management South Africa (PMSA); and a former member of the Research Management Board of IPMA. He serves on the Editorial Board of the PM World Journal. Moreover, he is the owner of the Aan’t Vette Wine Estate and De Doornkraal Vinotel (4-star hotel) in Riversdale, Western Cape.

Prof Steyn can be contacted at cranefield1@cranefield.ac.za. For information about Cranefield College, visit www.cranefield.ac.za.

To view other works by Prof Steyn, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at https://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/dr-pieter-steyn/


Prof Dr Brane Semolič

Founder and Head of LENS Living Lab
International living laboratory
Celje, Slovenia


Brane Semolič studied mechanical engineering, engineering economics, and informatics; he holds a scientific master’s degree and doctorate in business informatics. His focus of professional interest is industrial and system engineering, innovation and technology management, virtual organizations and systems, project and knowledge management. He has 40 years of working experiences in different industries (industrial engineering, IT, chemicals, household appliances, government, and education), as an expert, researcher, manager, entrepreneur, counselor to the Slovenian government and professor.  He operates as head of the open research and innovation organization LENS Living Lab. LENS Living Lab is an international industry-driven virtual living laboratory. He is acting as initiator and coordinator of various research and innovation collaboration platforms, programs and projects for the needs of different industries (ICT, robotics, laser additive manufacturing, logistics, education). He was co-founder and the first director of the TCS – Toolmakers Cluster of Slovenia (EU automotive industry suppliers). Since 2004 he is serving as the president of the TCS council of experts. Besides this, he is operating as a part-time professor at the Cranefield College.

He was head of project and information systems laboratory at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Head of the Project & Technology Management Institute at the Faculty of Logistics, University of Maribor and professor of project and technology management at the graduate and postgraduate level. He acted as a trainer at the International »European Project Manager« post-graduated program, organized jointly by the University of Bremen.

He was the co-founder and president of the Project Management Association of Slovenia (ZPM), vice president of IPMA (International Project Management Association), chairman of the IPMA Research Management Board (2005-2012), and technical vice-chairman of ICEC (International Cost Engineering Council).  He actively participated in the development of the IPMA 4-level project managers’ certification program. He introduced and was the first director of the IPMA certification program in Slovenia. He has been serving as the assessor in this certification program since 1997. He performed as assessor in the IPMA International PM Excellence Award Program in China, India, and Slovenia.

Brane is a registered assessor for the accreditation of education programs and education organizations by the EU-Slovenian Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education.  He was a Member of Strategic Advisory Board of European Competitiveness and Innovation, as well as the president of the Slovenian Chamber of Business Services. Brane received the award as ICEC Distinguished International Fellow in 2008. He received the »Silver Sign« for his achievements in research, education, and collaboration with the industry from the University of Maribor in 2015.

Professor Semolič is also an academic advisor for the PM World Journal.  He can be contacted at brane.semolic@3-lab.eu.   Additional information about the LENS Living Lab can be found at http://www.3-lab.eu/ .

To view other works by Prof Semolic, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at https://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/brane-semolic/