“The essence of management is to make knowledge productive”.
Is your QMS delivering value to your organisation?
The purpose of any QMS is to consistently provide product and services that meet customer and regulatory requirements. Consistency achieved through good internal control, will sustain and create profit for your business. Without consistency it becomes extremely difficult to identify abnormalities, analyse the impact, and plan improvement projects.
A top-notch quality management system (QMS) is therefore a necessary and powerful tool. The most effective quality managers leverage their QMSs to increase product quality, optimise manufacturing processes and exceed business standards. So, how can you improve your quality management system?
Harness the Power of Automation
The old saying, “work smarter, not harder” definitely applies here. Traditional paper-based QMSs are hard work to maintain and require a lot of manual updating. Attempting to analyse any of the data collected in these systems is even more of a time suck. For this reason, leading manufacturers are investing in automated QMSs. Modern eQMSs (electronic QMS) provide automated version control and a central data repository. That way, you never have to guess which is the updated document, and you never have to go hunting in multiple places for a particular piece of information. Talk about increasing efficiency.
Integrate QC with Other Management Processes
Quality control should never be a “lone ranger.” Instead, QC should harmonize with other areas of your business strategy – from sourcing and design up through manufacturing, distribution, and service. Next-generation eQMS solutions, like TeamPage, integrate key data sources and systems to develop closed-loop quality processes, or feedback loops, between functional areas. These closed-loop processes facilitate improvements earlier in the value chain, helping to continuously correct and prevent quality issues while driving costs down.
Continuously Validate Your Systems
Continually striving for excellence is a necessary strategy for becoming a leader in your niche of manufacturing. This same principle applies to your QMS. To help manufacturers achieve that aim (and to protect consumers), the market requires manufacturers in highly regulated industries to update (i.e., validate) their QMS to stay in line with current regulations. Modern eQMSs have continuous validation built into the system. These types of systems are ideal because they save manufacturers from the incredible headache of updating the system manually.
Traditional QMSs can be counterproductive to a manufacturer’s goal of continuous improvement. On the other hand, a modern eQMS can lower your cost of quality by eliminating unnecessary expenses due to human error, undiagnosed issues and communication gaps. The best and brightest quality managers are leveraging the latest mobile eQMS technology. They’re not just looking to bridge gaps in their system today; they’re protecting their leadership position in the marketplace and setting themselves up for greater success.
In essence, as summarised in Figure 1. above eQMSs offer us a tool to facilitate leadership commitment, collaborate and respond to deviations quickly, hold people accountable, highlight improvement opportunities and contribute to business profitability.
In this video I share my experience with both traditional and electronic QMS’s with my colleague Greg Sassen.