The main goal of Quality Management in mine action programmes to date has been to provide confidence to the beneficiaries, the operator and the National Mine Action Authority that clearance and quality requirements have been met and that released land is indeed safe to use. ‘Quality’ means ‘the degree to which a set of inherent characteristics fulfils requirements’, and ‘Quality Management’ means ‘coordinated activities to direct and control an organisation with regard to quality’.
The future direction of quality management in mine action will be more comprehensive and include all parts and activities of the mine action organisation to ensure that key principles of quality management, such as evidence-based decision making, continual improvement and customer focus, are enshrined in mine action. However, in the not-for-profit domain it is necessary to differentiate between the clients and the beneficiaries, of whom both can be seen as customers. A distinct output from a mine action activity can be hard to tie to a broader outcome, such as the number of casualties. The results-based management approach provides a tool to help overcome this challenge.
The GICHD collects and reviews existing trends in quality management and results-based management to build guides for the mine action community that accelerates and simplifies the implementation of quality management systems in mine action organisations. These guides are coupled with training and focused country interventions on the request of national authorities. The aim is to rapidly introduce comprehensive quality management and to realise the benefits in the form of increased efficiency, transparency and accountability.