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What to do when Employees are not following Instructions


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Some Related Topic Tags (Not all threads are Tagged)
employee error, employees (general), instructions (general), procedures (general), responsibilities
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  Post Number #1  
Old 21st January 2014, 12:52 PM
TSCoord

 
 
Total Posts: 8
Please Help! What to do when Employees are not following Instructions

First I will give you all some back history. Our organization is ISO/TS registered and has several well established procedures, forms and instructions in place for training.

However, my question is, how do you (as a quality professional) ensure that the employees are following the controlled documents and what do you do if you find that they skipped a step?

We currently issue CARs if they ignore a step, but the general response I get in those CARs is "I don't use the instructions anymore, now that I'm trained." The employees that made a recent oversight in our company are two senior engineers who know the process, but choose to not follow it.

Any thoughts on how you would handle this, would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks

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  Post Number #2  
Old 21st January 2014, 01:11 PM
John Broomfield's Avatar
John Broomfield

 
 
Total Posts: 2,458
Lightbulb Re: Not following instructions

Quote:
In Reply to Parent Post by nsymon View Post

First I will give you all some back history. Our organization is ISO/TS registered and has several well established procedures, forms and instructions in place for training.

However, my question is, how do you (as a quality professional) ensure that the employees are following the controlled documents and what do you do if you find that they skipped a step?

We currently issue CARs if they ignore a step, but the general response I get in those CARs is "I don't use the instructions anymore, now that I'm trained." The employees that made a recent oversight in our company are two senior engineers who know the process, but choose to not follow it.

Any thoughts on how you would handle this, would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks
nsymon,

You could ask the operators, team leaders and supervisors how they monitor and correct processes (per 8.2.3). You could capture that monitoring process in a documented procedure with the agreed rules for invoking corrective action.

Quality can then rebuild its independence for auditing the effectiveness of the monitoring process.

Best to get Quality out of the supervision role if possible.

You could work with the people concerned to mistake-proof the task instead.

John

Last edited by John Broomfield; 21st January 2014 at 01:18 PM.
Thank You to John Broomfield for your informative Post and/or Attachment!
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  Post Number #3  
Old 21st January 2014, 01:14 PM
Bev D's Avatar
Bev D

 
 
Total Posts: 3,468
Re: What to do when Employees are not following instructions

why did they skip the step?
there is a substantial difference between "i forgot" and I didn't want to do it"
Thank You to Bev D for your informative Post and/or Attachment!
  Post Number #4  
Old 21st January 2014, 01:14 PM
hogheavenfarm's Avatar
hogheavenfarm

 
 
Total Posts: 515
Re: What to do when Employees are not following instructions

This usually happens when the procedure is not streamlined.
People , like water, will follow the path of least resistance.
Our goal is to make sure that the path of least resistance is the 'right way'.
Find out why the step was skipped and see if there is another way to incorporate it. Maybe later in the process where it 'fits better', or maybe there are redundant actions going on.
Asking these people to help redesign the process steps makes them invested in outcome, and more likely to produce a better and more efficient process.
Thank You to hogheavenfarm for your informative Post and/or Attachment!
  Post Number #5  
Old 21st January 2014, 01:20 PM
Golfman25

 
 
Total Posts: 755
Re: What to do when Employees are not following instructions

In a nutshell, make the process simple to follow. Don't mandate unnecessary steps.
  Post Number #6  
Old 21st January 2014, 01:38 PM
Wilderness Woody's Avatar
Wilderness Woody

 
 
Total Posts: 116
Re: What to do when Employees are not following instructions

Quote:
In Reply to Parent Post by hogheavenfarm View Post

....
Asking these people to help redesign the process steps makes them invested in outcome, and more likely to produce a better and more efficient process.
Get some credit for process improvement when you can!

However, if the process is correct and the staff do not follow, then discipline actions need to go into effect as a last resort.

Thanks to Wilderness Woody for your informative Post and/or Attachment!
  Post Number #7  
Old 21st January 2014, 02:11 PM
Wes Bucey's Avatar
Wes Bucey

 
 
Total Posts: 11,056
Re: What to do when Employees are not following instructions

First, it is impossible to discipline an employee if you don't have authority in the hierarchy to do so. Sending N/C (nonconformance reports) and requesting CAR (corrective action reports) from a guy who told you flatly he didn't do it on purpose is like putting lipstick on a pig - it ain't pretty and it irritates the pig.

The Deming way is to assess whether the missing step is actually necessary or just a holdover from another time. If it is REALLY necessary to assure conformance of the product or service and meet customer requirements, then someone in management slipped up in training the folks who omit the step. The slip up was either in not making its necessity part of the curriculum or in not assuring the students understood and would follow the necessity, thus certifying a student as "trained" when in fact he was not.

So if it is necessary, then you need to pick on the trainer who certified these guys as "trained."

If it is not necessary, then get rid of the step.
Thank You to Wes Bucey for your informative Post and/or Attachment!
  Post Number #8  
Old 21st January 2014, 06:54 PM
KnoKsuKaO

 
 
Total Posts: 37
Re: What to do when Employees are not following instructions

We have the same problem.
Our middle management is sometimes behaves in an uncontrolled (spontaneous).
We do not want to solve financially, but we still have not found out how else.
And we are a small company.
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