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A revolution in product quality

It is Diageo North America’s mission to offer our consumers only the best and safest products. The Quality Revolution is key to that mission.

A revolution in product quality

During our Supply Leadership Conference in July 2011, our North America supply organisation put out a call to arms called the ‘Quality Revolution’, asking people to come together to improve the quality of our products. We wanted to redouble our efforts to make our products safe for our consumers, ensure the growth of our brands, and instil a ‘made with pride’ culture throughout Diageo.

We put in place some demanding goals. The aim was to achieve fewer than 10,000 packaging defects per million units (based on a 0.1% sampling of every production run). Reaching this goal for reducing defects, which can be as small as a tiny label tear, would represent a 93% improvement on the previous year. We also wanted to drive the number of severe quality incidents down to zero, and see all our sites gain the internationally-recognised Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) accreditation.

Having kicked off in July, the initiative made great progress throughout the year, and successfully drove the step change we set out to achieve.

Tony Rogers, global quality development director, said, ‘With collaboration throughout the entire supply chain network, we’re delighted our North America team have achieved a 96% improvement in packaging quality, with a world-class 5,200 defects per million units. In addition, they secured HACCP accreditation for 75% of their sites. The team are justifiably proud of having achieved a 50% reduction in overall quality incidents, which not only led to an improved reputation, but also a 63% reduction in the cost of quality, allowing the business to invest more in growth.’

For next year and beyond, it remains our mission to reach world class in the spirits category – with no severe incidents, and an additional 50% reduction in packaging defects. We will also be measuring and tracking our liquid quality, ensuring our products are consistent and continue to delight our consumers.