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Becoming Quality Manager at PSP

Monday, September 22, 2014
My first introduction into Quality at PSP came when I was offered to attend an internal auditor training course back in November 2013.

Once the training was completed I set about auditing my first two audits within the company. Following on from these I became aware of an opportunity to become the Quality Manager.

Having worked in the education sector for many years, dealing with question paper production and large teams of external consultants, where quality was paramount, it felt like the right step forward.

Upon looking into our whole QMS it became evident that we needed to take our QMS to the next level. Some of procedures and work instructions needed an update after the introduction of Vision, the company’s new CRM (customer relationship management) system.

This meant that some procedures and work instructions where work was previously manually created had become obsolete, due to the powerful way Vision captures information and how you were then able to manipulate the information at a press of a button.

This is where my journey started and a plan was put together to review our QMS system. This review was undertaken with full involvement from the CEO and each department head and a number of employees.

I believed:

  • For PSP – our Quality Management System (QMS) describes our philosophy and attitude of our company, that we strive to provide our customers with a product or services that satisfies their needs, first time, every time.
  • For PSP – our QMS requires our commitment to all aspects of our company’s operations being completed right first time, every time and making sure that any non-compliance is eliminated from operational processes, removing wasteful practices and any losses to the company.
  • PSPs QMS views the business as a collection of processes, which we believe should be practiced in all our departments.  All of these practices require senior management passion and commitment; which is then filtered throughout PSP. 
  • PSP is committed to getting things done right, first time, every time, by planning, supporting, reviewing, training, all our employees. Continuous improvement works through PSP, from high level planning and decision-making by the senior management team, to performance of individual roles by improving skills to produce better results in the future.
  • PSP always want to be able to prevent mistakes from happening. Where mistakes cannot be prevented, an early detection of these mistakes can make a huge impact not only to the business but to the morale of the employees. 
  • Our objective is to ‘Do things right, first time, every time’.

Renewing our QMS

Once identifying the tasks needing to be done, various process flow maps where created, this was communicated to the CEO, and a number of meetings took place with the Head of ICT, the Head of Development and the CEO.

Through this communication it was apparent that due to the growth of the company, and the introduction of Vision, a lot of the processes had changed, or became obsolete and the structure of the procedures and work instructions would be unclear to new employees.

With that in mind, I felt it was important to ensure that the heads of department did not become disillusioned with the QMS. 

Therefore further meetings were held on an individual basis, explaining how the QMS is to work effectively for each department and a new structure of procedures and work instructions evolved. From then on, each and every procedure, work instruction and form was reviewed. These documents were either obsoleted or:

  • amended to highlight the changes brought about by the new CRM system, Vision,
  • amended to reflect the current process of the procedure or work instruction or form
  • due to the growth of the company, starting off with a dozen or so procedures and work instructions, which were easily manageable, rapidly amounted to lots more, it showed me quite quickly that all the documentation needed to be crossed referenced as part of the review.

Once these were established for each document, it was decided that the electronic filing system needed to be overhauled. This ensure that all procedures, work instructions, forms and quality documents are held in SharePoint, as a read only document, each document is tagged, therefore each department can see immediately which documents belong to just their department.

The Quality folder in SharePoint also holds a new PSP Internal Training Matrix, which cross references each procedure, work instruction, company policies and quality procedures, by department, by person. Now clearly showing who needs to be trained in which area, when training is happening, who has been trained, who has yet to be trained and when procedures or work instructions have been updated.

The training matrix allowed me to develop a new on-going audit schedule, where by each head of department can see clearly when audits to procedures and work instructions fall within the year.

Conclusion

I feel that our procedures, work instructions and forms now integrate PSPs functions, from Director level throughout the company. 

It now feels as though the operational processes for development and customer services departments, who proactively work together on developing/developed applications, are more fluid and also highlights areas that cross over within these departments.

I also feel that this review process has actively encouraged all employees to become further involved in continuously improving our processes and procedures by incorporating their knowledge and experiences to ensure and provide our customers with the product or service they need.

I also feel that using the new QMS allows for some mistakes to be made, but these mistakes can now be highlighted and eliminated by reviewing the process, these reviews could be from changing a process to an employee requiring further training, but feel that the system has become more robust.

Although we felt that we had our quality management system right first time, it just shows that with the introduction of a new system such as our CRM how much it can impact on procedures and work instructions, and demonstrates that quality never stands still, it just evolves again and again with the growth of a company.

Written by Fiona Verde Quality Manager at PSP. View her leadership team profile here >

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