It may seem over the top when I say quality control is like the blood in your body, but if it does not reach everywhere it should, you wont know until it's already too late. Quality must reach every part of your business or it will be the same. So how do you make sure quality control starts at your front door?
When you talk about quality in a company you are talking about everyone and their work from the janitorial staff to the most senior executive. It is so comprehensive that it would be impossible for me to cover it all here. So I am going to detail the importance and consequence of failure to implement quality control processes into the company.So when it comes to quality, people will judge by the cover and then by the content. Your customers will let you know if your quality is bad by simply moving to another supplier and your suppliers will only give you top quality if they know how important it is to you. Internally, the staff at every level must be committed to quality and understand that there is consequences for not adhering to it. Example, how many times have you received an important email with a number of spelling mistakes? What impression did you have? Yet probably all email software has a spell check and all you have to do is click to make it active. How many times has your company accepted an item that was defective but either reworked it or used it, if you did then you can rest assured it is going to keep happening. So you have a quality target and if you cannot meet it the you must analyse why and resolve it. Sure, everyone makes mistakes, we are human. But you must have the systems in place that it is found internally. Then you take the necessary counter measure to prevent it in the future.Your customers expect perfection from you and you must ensure they are satisfied and they will tell their customers about you.
So work with your Human Resources department and document policies and procedures, then you must spend whatever time necessary to train every person in the company and they must sign up to them. You need a dedicated Quality Department and have them be trainers in the company. If you put a mission statement online, in catalogues and as a sign in reception you must make sure it is the truth or it will come back to haunt you. You should strive to become accredited to the organisations such as ISO and the Environment and any ever other accreditations that are applicable to your industry. But, they are not just show pieces for you to hang on the wall to impress people. You have had to prepare documents for the Auditors to use to assess the company and accept them. You must follow what you wrote because if you consider it, you filled out the assessment documents and in doing so YOU knew what you believed was necessary for your company to qualify. Therefore if you do not follow them then you are Purposely creating bad Quality.
I will leave at that and will be publishing a lot more in the future and will assess any business to see if they are a Quality business. Ironically, people pay garages to pre-check their car for an NCT test which is there to confirm your car is fit to be on the road. Your next test maybe several years away, will you wait to get your car checked until just before that test? Think about it.
Gerry McHugh Consulting - Getting your business back on track.