3 tools every Quality Management System (QMS) must have in play
Any organization’s quality systems rely on a many intrinsic elements, but there are some more important than others. If you are looking to implement or improve your current quality assurance practices, start giving some thought to what these fundamentals may be.
If you think it all seems too hard, begin with some dedicated thought on the following three essentials. Keep reading, the solution for your organization may be right in front of you.
Power to the people
It is crucial that any organization, large or small, understand the need to develop and evaluate the skills and competencies of staff. This will only succeed in strengthening your people’s roles, and their confidence in knowing they are truly a part of the future of the organization. It goes without saying that all stakeholders should be on board with changes that may need to occur to currents documents and process controls, but what may be little known are the genuinely quantifiable results when your people actively participate in the organization’s quality improvements.
But, wait. You don’t get out of it that easily. This isn’t only about the day to day, front line workers. This includes middle and senior management as well.
Don’t expect general staff to engage, if you won’t. It’s important that you look at the bigger picture. Happier, empowered staff will have a positive flow-on effect. Guess where? Straight to your customers.
Competitive gain is what all business strive for. The willingness is always there, but the application may be lacking. That’s not always the fault of management. Sometimes a little guidance goes a long way, especially with technical aspects of the business we would rather leave to others. The systems you implement to aid your business must be purpose driven. In addition to doing what you want them to do, adopted technologies must also have the capability to provide what others may demand.
I am, of course, talking about regulatory compliance. No one likes the words, but you will like them even less when you have some pen wielding auditor dragging you into his or her world for five hours a day.
From a business use point of view, quality assurance can be elevated to a whole new level with the use of correct and intelligent applications. From start to finish you can to see how things are progressing, and how you’re dealing with issues that may creep up on you, whenever you’re not looking. The most important factor in quality improvement is the systems you use, and the notion that continuous improvement is not a one-off project, but is just as its name suggests, continuous.
Your position in the market place depends on the organization having a fundamental and unwavering belief in the constant need to disrupt your competitors, with continuous improvement strategies. The correct system will help you achieve this.
The paper trail
Documents get a lot of bad press. They are accused of being cumbersome, and taking up valuable room in an all too space-conscious world. The problem is, we all rely on them, so with a slight grimace we allow them to co-exist. Matrix, flowcharts and workflows are all tools we use for day-today business needs. After all, these are the things that have taught us what we do, and are the rudiments of an organization’s core functionality.
For quality assurance, the need to have documentation contained, but accessible, is now seen as simply good business practice. Digitally stored documentation surpasses the old ways of filing cabinet based document control, without a doubt. The best solution is that every paper originated processes and workflow document be housed within a new dwelling, where they can stand proudly in their place.
We aren’t talking about reinventing the wheel here, just ensuring the best practices are introduced and understood. The building blocks for any business deserve the respect of partnering with great systems, to ensure the viability of a business in the future. Any business can benefit from implementation of effective quality management systems and more to the point, everyone in the business is responsible for the quality of your products and services. Fit for purpose, integrated and easily used systems really deserve the red carpet treatment.
Take the time to see how non-existence of these three simple things can affect your organization.