Any ideas on getting mid to upper management involved in Internal Audits?

C

Curt de Mich

#1
I have recently been moved from lead internal auditor to Quality Manager. The system I am taking over has been neglected for the past 6-8 months. The procedures for internal auditing have not been followed and upper management is not that interested in solving the problem, Or so it would seem. Any ideas on getting mid to upper management involved would be great.

Thank You,

CC
 
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E

energy

#2
Originally posted by stressed:
"The procedures for internal auditing have not been followed and upper management is not that interested in solving the problem, Or so it would seem."
CC[/B]
Stressed,

Your statement "or so it would seem" means, to me, you're not sure. It may be that they don't understand the importance or the methods they can use to improve the situation. But, I doubt it. The very fact that your previous Quality Manager has disappeared doesn't bode well for anybody trying to convince upper management that there is a problem. This scenario plays out like this:
1.The previous Manager became a pain in the butt trying to do his/her job.
2. The previous Manager was viewed as "replaceable" because management has no clue as what this person was trying to accomplish.
3. You get chosen for this great honor because you are next in line. By changing the guard, management gets a break while you are learning the ropes and adjusting to the new promotion and elevated status.
4. In a little while you will approach Management trying to do your job, with all intentions to do a better job than your predecessor.
5. You will be promised full cooperation and praise for the fine effort you have displayed assuming this very difficult task.
6. A year later, things remain the same.
7. Maybe another year later, you get tired of the repeating the same thing over and over again. You then decide to move on or forced to look for other employment because you became a pain in the butt.
Been there, done that! I have no suggestions to offer you, because I'm at step 5., once more! Welcome to Management and good luck!

energy



[This message has been edited by energy (edited 06 August 2001).]
 
S
#3
Stressed, It is not up to you to get management involved. That is entirely up to management.
You can evaluate the quality system, present it with a plan to management and let them do their job. Their job is to study the results and provide solutions.
One of the nicer things about being in quality management is that you are not responsible for the quality of the product, management is. And the sooner you let them know that, the better off you will be.
Buy a the book "Out of the Crisis" by Dr Deming, excellent reading; you may even buy a couple of extra copies to pass around to management.
 

Randy

Super Moderator
#4
You need to approach management of this system as a "Value Added" approach and not as another type of overhead department.

Business is in business to make money, not to get warm fuzzies. Develop your metrics in such a way as your values can be placed in profit lost / profit realized.

If you look at the ISO descriptions of benefits of system implementation and maintenance you will find that most of them will deal one way or another with money.

I think that people get too wrapped around the axle with stressing their system and not enough time showing how the system relates to the bottom line. Take a business approach.

I use this line of thinking when I do awareness training for ISO 14000. I lay off the "Save the Spotted Owl and Old Growth Forrest" crap and explain how ISO 14000 will help maintain markets and can be used to leverage new ones. I explain that 14K is a "Business Management System" that envolves and requires environmental awareness from the onset of product development, and not as an afterthought.

Show the inter-relationship of profit loss to the amount of sales necessary to make that loss up as it applies to the neglect of your quality system.

I'll stop here and get off the soap box.
 

E Wall

Just Me!
Super Moderator
#5
The problem needs to be addressed. You have not indicated how many internal auditors there are, or if this issue was brought up at Management Review.

If I were in your shoes (with my goal being getting the work done for the benefit of the company) I would do the following:
1. Evaluate what audits NEED to be done [review core requirements and assess priority] and then discuss scheduling with auditors available.
2. Present the problem and your solution plan (including revised audit schedule) at the next management review meeing and request support.
3. Keep communication/status records
4. Update progress at next mgmt rev stressing the need for additional mgmt focus if the audits are overdue.

Remember that Mgmt Reviews are a tool that can/should be used to drive or put focus on areas/processes that are not successfully being handled/followed.

Internal Auditing (whether your under 1994 rev or 2000) is reviewed at every surveillance audit visit by a registrar. Your registrar auditor will expect you to use the system (mgmt rev) to drive your process if it isn't adequately being followed.

Good Luck!


------------------
Eileen V. Wall
ISO Coordinator
 
E

energy

#6
Sam,

That's how it's supposed to work. If Stressed develops a plan and leaves it for Management to take action, it will remain right where it was left. As an appointed member of "Management", Stressed must continually push them (nicely) to take action. Therein lies the rub. You become a "burr under their saddle". If all management took Quality seriously, our lives would be a lot easier and Stressed wouldn't be posting looking for some guidance. As I've said many times in these forums, management thinks it will just happen without their involvement as long as they are of the mindset that they have a Manager who is responsible for Quality. Quality Managers come and go because they do not get the support they need. JMHO

energy
 
C

Curt de Mich

#7
Sam,
I have owner support but am lacking production support. My problem seems to be that supervision and production management have been left to their own debices for so long that they dont feel responsible for the quality of their product. The owner has told me to do whatever it takes to improve our quality system. So I have presented him with a plan that includes re-writing most of the procedures when I transition to ISO 2000. I hope to gain at least the support of the production manager by the time this happens if not I guess I have a very long road ahead. Thank You for the book recomendation.

Thanks Again,

CC
Originally posted by Sam:
Stressed, It is not up to you to get management involved. That is entirely up to management.
You can evaluate the quality system, present it with a plan to management and let them do their job. Their job is to study the results and provide solutions.
One of the nicer things about being in quality management is that you are not responsible for the quality of the product, management is. And the sooner you let them know that, the better off you will be.
Buy a the book "Out of the Crisis" by Dr Deming, excellent reading; you may even buy a couple of extra copies to pass around to management.
 
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