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A business model to improve an organization’s quality and performance

The European Foundation For Quality Management (EFQM), based in Brussels, is a not for profit organisation established with the purpose of increasing the competitiveness of companies. Central to this objective, the organisation promotes a model of excellence which it believes drives competitiveness and quality.

The EFQM framework, developed in 1989, looks at the cause and effect between what an organisation does and what it achieves. The premise is that if an organisation wants to achieve a different result, it has to change something within the organisation.

There are three integrated components of the model:


1. The fundamental concepts –  these are the things that any company has to do to deliver superb quality and performance. They are the hygiene factors of excellence such as ensuring that the organisation offers added value to customers, it is environmentally friendly, it continually improves etc.

2. The criteria – the ingredients of the excellence recipe and the results they deliver. They include such as leadership, strategy, people, partnerships and processors.  They also put an emphasis on customer satisfaction, employee satisfaction, and financial performance.

3. RADAR – the control and monitoring process for ensuring excellence and it is an acronym for:

  • Results - is the strategy delivering the right results?

  • Approaches – does the organisation have the right plan to deliver the results?

  • Deploy – is everything being deployed in a systematic way to ensure the achievement of results?

  • Assess and refined – is there a learning environment which adjusts activities should this be necessary?


In the diagram below we see the RADAR control factors around the edge of the central model.  The central model is made up of the fundamental concepts (blue boxes) and the criteria/results (the red boxes). (You will get a better look at the framework if you download the PowerPoint slides).



Central to the EFQM model are people. People play a key role as enablers. People are also an important part of the results (eg customer satisfaction, employee satisfaction).  This has similarities to the Service Profit Chain which tell us that profits start with an engaged workforce.

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