Quality is defined as 'fitness to
purpose', i.e. in terms of Construction it is providing a building which
provides an appropriate quality for the purpose for which it is intended. The
price to be paid for a building is a reflection of the expectations of quality -
A cheaper building probably uses inferior materials and is likely to be less
attractive and less durable. The quality is also related to the timing of when
it is delivered.
Quality Control in the construction industry can be looked at as having three elements:
Like most other aspects of construction management quality control has to be planned. Planning seeks 'order' and a quality control system for a construction project reflects this sense of order. It may be seen to be in five basic stages:
It is obvious that quality is proportional to costs associated with the construction process. Costs associated with quality need to be identified for management decisions. The costs of quality can be broken down as follows:
Quality assurance is a mechanism for ensuring that the
construction process takes place within the framework of a quality management
system. This suggests that quality assurance defines the organization structure,
tasks and duties for implementing quality management.
In 1987, the Building research establishment surveyed the quality problems on Britain's construction sites. They found that half of the faults were design related, and 40% of the problems arose from faulty construction. 10% were product failing.