ISO 9000 & AUDITS WORLD CONFERENCE
Implementing & Maintaining a QMS in the Modern Electronic Age
Presenter: Douglas Chambers, QMS Advisor, FL Quality Assurance, Friendswood, Texas, USA
Co-Presenter: Darci Chambers, The Boss Lady, Texas Quality
Keywords: Control of Documented Information, Binders, Electronic Management
Like many Quality Managers, back 2009 I inherited a mass of binders, loose papers, spreadsheets tracking documents that could never be found when I needed them, and a mountain of file shares with no determinable order. The question was immediately what to do to sort, organize, and store. An even better question was what to even bother sorting organizing and storing? How could I ever attempt to sort through over 10,000 documents/records and nearly 100 binders to find what is useful and relevant? Well I couldn’t, and still can’t. However, if I could get other team members on board with a good program they could find what was useful to them, and if enough people could locate what was useful to them, and we had a central store of information with an easy to understand system, we could make it happen. And make it happen we did. Having a background in IT, I opted for SharePoint. Since it was a small company, I opted for the free version, WSS 3.0. The power of SharePoint to quickly build a site, control access, approval, and create workflows to maintain up to date communication cannot be underestimated. Regardless the electronic data management system you utilize, there are some basic benefits of organizing data you need to understand to find the right tool and implement properly. That last statement is crucial, a poor implementation of the best electronic management tool can and will result in disaster. Keep in mind that all of anything is generally a toxic mixture.
We can all see that rooms full of binders is a toxic mixture, but a production floor and admin office without paper is a toxic mix for the quality management system. We have to find the balance with the many quality forms we have NCR, CAR, MOC, ENC, Audit Reports, etc., and 20 year old records for our biggest customers. There is a balance to be found. But first you have to have a good foundation, and that foundation starts with your team and their acceptance of the tools you use to make their life better and save them time and energy for the rest of their work and home life. No body wants to work overtime pushing paperwork.