Influence Of ISO 9001 Certification On Performance Of Seed Distribution: A Survey Of Kenya Seed Company Distributors In Central Kenya
vii ABSTRACT Most organizations in Kenya, whether private or public have adopted a form standardization to be in conformity with international or global requirements. The adoption of ISO 9001 standards is intended to assist organizations in all sectors to operate an effective quality management system. The companies will determine the specifics of how the standards apply to their organizations. An ISO 9001 certified organization demonstrates to the customers that it has achieved a basic level of quality. The Quality Management System (QMS) promotes a process approach in determination and management of numerous linked activities in the running of an organization. The emphasis is on process approach in understanding needs and customers' requirements, the need to consider processes regarding added value, obtaining results of process performance and effectiveness that should lead to continual improvement. The Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) cycle when applied at every step of decision making consistently develops quality products, satisfied customers and improved business performance. The study sought to find out what influence ISO 9001 certification has on the performance of seed distribution in Kenya. To achieve this, a census survey was conducted on 78 Kenya Seed Company (ISO Certified) distributors (Agents) in central Kenya. The performance variables of the ISO 9001 thought to influence seed distribution in Kenya were product, customer satisfaction, continual improvement, handling of customer complaints and meeting distributor's performance The results showed that performance of seed distribution was highly influenced by the organization being ISO 9001 certified. There is confidence in the seed supplied to the customers as well as the products being certified for traceability. Many respondents agreed to a large extent that customer expectations have been met as evidenced by the results. Under continual improvement, ISO 9001 has influenced putting up of the organizations clear quality goals in place for distributors to work with. The certification in ISO 9001 has led to improvement in distribution. There is also a significant influence on the following up customer complaints since clear guidelines on complaints resolution have been put up. From the results of this study, recommendation is made that regular surveys be carried out to evaluate customer satisfaction and corrective action should always be taken to address customer complaints. Further the study recommends that continuous training of agents be carried out by the organization on its distributors and that a return system be put in place for non-moving seed at the distributor’s shops.
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