An organization cannot become too bureaucratic because the aim of TQM is to gain improvements in services and products provided. TQM helps to provide continual feedback and constant identification of errors, but the programmers still need to figure out which errors are being identified. A working program is like a scientific hypothesis in the sense that it may always possess errors no one has yet found, and there is no definitive “proof” that it works correctly, no matter how much it is tested. ISO involves the following areas of control: “customer focus, leadership, involvement of people, process approach, system approach, continual improvements, factual approach to decision-making and mutually beneficial supplier relationships. ” ISO provides another important source of information for programmers.
Whether it is in the form of reference manuals, tutorials, comments in programs, or online help, documentation is meant to serve as an essential tool in programmers’ mastery of their work. In fact, programmers do draw on written texts in a number of ways, not necessarily those imagined by technical writers. Though programmers certainly use written materials, reference manuals provide less utility than the great effort and expense that writers and vendors put into producing them would warrant. Any programmer wishing to use manuals for learning or for reference would encounter two problems from the start. At the time of this study, the company owned very few copies of the software manuals provided by the manufacturer, and those copies were not centrally located.
People would take manuals from the shelves and not return them, and there would be no easy way to locate these manuals. Electronic mail messages requesting the return of the manuals would often go unanswered, so someone would have to walk through the rows of cubicles hoping to find a particular manual on someone else’s desk. Eventually, most people just gave up and found some other way to learn what they needed to know. Documentation can be useful in learning a system or a program by providing an overview as well as by showing people how to use individual commands or features.