The EFQM Excellence Model*
The Fundamental Concepts outlined on the About Excellence - Overview page are re-shaped and expressed graphically in the framework of the Model. There are five 'enabler' criteria (those on the left) concerned with how an organisation does things, and four 'results' criteria concerned with what an organisation has achieved.This graphic illustrates the highest level structure of the Model (the short descriptive comments below the criterion titles are our own, and are not formally part of the Model.
There is more detail below these 9 criteria: 32 criterion parts and numerous guidance points on things an organisation can consider doing. We do not go into that great detail, but we have outlined some information about the interim level. If you want to read a lot more detail, this is available in the EFQM's official Guide.
Some misconceptions about the EFQM Excellence Model
We have found a number of misunderstandings which are held about the EFQM Excellence Model and we hope that the following comments will help to position it appropriately. Our DOES IT WORK? section will help to answer one of the most important questions.
|WHAT IT IS/DOES||WHAT IT ISN'T /DOESN'T DO|
|Self-assessment is concerned with THINKING about the organisation||It's not a box-ticking audit|
|It is a world class management framework, which can help in the internal running of an organisation||It doesn't mean you have to apply for an external award (most users don't yet go for a formal external Award)|
|It has a "Quality" ancestry and is based on sound organisational principles||It isn't a new fad|
|It is a tool which can help an organisation diagnose for itself where it needs to improve||It doesn't improve anything by itself|
|"It's a marathon, not a sprint" so should be part of a longer term culture for building an excellent organisation||It isn't a panacea or quick fix (but self assessment usually leads to some 'quick wins' as well as longer term improvement needs); it shouldn't be seen as "just another initiative"|
|It provides signposts to improvements needed, by helping you to understand your strengths and areas for improvement||It doesn't tell you how to do everything - it is not 'prescriptive'|
|It can help you identify a 'vital few' improvements||It doesn't mean you must plan to improve everything at the same time; it's difficult to deliver on many fronts at the same time|
|It can be used flexibly beyond just self assessing to identify improvements - in the D&D Services section, our Case Studies show how we have helped some clients in different ways||There isn't much point in using it unless you believe in the Fundamental Concepts as appropriate ways to run a modern organisation|
It is also an inherently positive approach. It does not talk about 'weaknesses', but about 'Areas for Improvement'. This may not seem that important, but in fact makes it easier to diagnose the issues without looking for a scapegoat, someone to blame for weaknesses. Which makes it more likely that people will take the outputs constructively, without automatically putting their defences up.
*EFQM stands for The European Foundation for Quality Management. The Excellence Model is a registered trademark of the EFQM