ERP/MRP system as part of the QMS (Quality Management System)

R

Red Bead

#1
I am in a state of shock as apparently the entire top management team (save one person) does not believe that our ERP/MRP system is "part" of the quality management system! We ship and receive materials using it. We trace goods from raw material to bulk batches to packaged kits shipped to the customer with it. It generates our sales orders, shop orders ("pick lists"), packing slips, you name it! The QMS procedures reference the system repeatedly. I have work instructions with keystroke-by-keystroke instructions on how to carry out tasks using this system. And yet it's not "part of the quality system"?

I am very discouraged because they all seemed to be understanding that their Quality Management System was, in fact, their Business Management System. So the program on which the business runs is somehow separate from it? You may as well argue that our mixers, scales, and packaging equipment are somehow not "part" of the QMS.

This topic came up because we are going to be doing a MAJOR upgrade of the system and one person in the meeting inquired about having a Quality Planning Checklist (one of our tools for ensuring quality requirements are met). Everyone else in the room didn't see the need because the ERP/MRP system wasn't "part" of the Quality system!

If anyone has a clear, simple statement or two that will help us all understand each other, I'd appreciate it.
 
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Jim Wynne

Staff member
Admin
#2
Re: ERP/MRP system as part of the QMS

I am in a state of shock as apparently the entire top management team (save one person) does not believe that our ERP/MRP system is "part" of the quality management system! We ship and receive materials using it. We trace goods from raw material to bulk batches to packaged kits shipped to the customer with it. It generates our sales orders, shop orders ("pick lists"), packing slips, you name it! The QMS procedures reference the system repeatedly. I have work instructions with keystroke-by-keystroke instructions on how to carry out tasks using this system. And yet it's not "part of the quality system"?

I am very discouraged because they all seemed to be understanding that their Quality Management System was, in fact, their Business Management System. So the program on which the business runs is somehow separate from it? You may as well argue that our mixers, scales, and packaging equipment are somehow not "part" of the QMS.

This topic came up because we are going to be doing a MAJOR upgrade of the system and one person in the meeting inquired about having a Quality Planning Checklist (one of our tools for ensuring quality requirements are met). Everyone else in the room didn't see the need because the ERP/MRP system wasn't "part" of the Quality system!

If anyone has a clear, simple statement or two that will help us all understand each other, I'd appreciate it.
This is one of those instances where a graphic representation of processes and interactions would probably be helpful. That, combined with stories of actual instances where inventory planning failures resulted in unhappy customers might be just the ticket.
 

Stijloor

Staff member
Super Moderator
#3
Re: ERP/MRP system as part of the QMS

I am in a state of shock as apparently the entire top management team (save one person) does not believe that our ERP/MRP system is "part" of the quality management system! We ship and receive materials using it. We trace goods from raw material to bulk batches to packaged kits shipped to the customer with it. It generates our sales orders, shop orders ("pick lists"), packing slips, you name it! The QMS procedures reference the system repeatedly. I have work instructions with keystroke-by-keystroke instructions on how to carry out tasks using this system. And yet it's not "part of the quality system"?

I am very discouraged because they all seemed to be understanding that their Quality Management System was, in fact, their Business Management System. So the program on which the business runs is somehow separate from it? You may as well argue that our mixers, scales, and packaging equipment are somehow not "part" of the QMS.

This topic came up because we are going to be doing a MAJOR upgrade of the system and one person in the meeting inquired about having a Quality Planning Checklist (one of our tools for ensuring quality requirements are met). Everyone else in the room didn't see the need because the ERP/MRP system wasn't "part" of the Quality system!

If anyone has a clear, simple statement or two that will help us all understand each other, I'd appreciate it.
Hello Red Bead,

Too bad and too sad that many organizations believe that we live in a dual universe. One is our business, and oh yes, the other one is ISO.....:frust:

Let me give this a try....

A Quality Management System is everything we do, and everything we have in place to make sure that the Customer gets what he wants and we make a profit.

Good Luck my friend.

Stijloor.
 
M

Martijn

#4
Re: ERP/MRP system as part of the QMS

Agree with Stijloor here, that's the message you should be preaching.

To get the point through you can take it a step further even by claiming that the ERP system upgrade might/will replace some procedures. In our ERP system we are currently setting up some approval workflows, which is great for me, since I can now throw out some workinstructions on this. Let the ERP system do the work for you.

Explain management that if they don't put in the quality planning list, that you'll have to make one seperately besides the ERP system, while the idea of ERP is to integrate business and such.

Good luck!
 
S

somerqc

#5
Re: ERP/MRP system as part of the QMS

It is ironic that this subject came up. We are currently reviewing potential vendors of an ERP system (we currently have a 10 yr old financial package).

Fortunately, I was already able to convince the owner that we need to ensure that the ERP will be used to make our quality system easier (plus, all the other benefits that come with the use of an ERP).

For instance, many work instructions can be eliminated as the software will control many items that are documented at this time.

Training can be documented online.
All quality related items can be online
Customer complaint review and closure can be online.
Dramatic increase in capacity (we are currently typing each invoice for instance :mg:)
etc...etc...etc....

Basically, I don't have the OP's issue. In fact, I have the exact opposite. I am the co-chair of our committee and the point of contact for the vendors!!:D

John
 

Douglas E. Purdy

Quite Involved in Discussions
#6
Re: ERP/MRP system as part of the QMS

I am in a state of shock as apparently the entire top management team (save one person) does not believe that our ERP/MRP system is "part" of the quality management system! We ship and receive materials using it. We trace goods from raw material to bulk batches to packaged kits shipped to the customer with it. It generates our sales orders, shop orders ("pick lists"), packing slips, you name it! The QMS procedures reference the system repeatedly. I have work instructions with keystroke-by-keystroke instructions on how to carry out tasks using this system. And yet it's not "part of the quality system"?

I am very discouraged because they all seemed to be understanding that their Quality Management System was, in fact, their Business Management System. So the program on which the business runs is somehow separate from it? You may as well argue that our mixers, scales, and packaging equipment are somehow not "part" of the QMS.

This topic came up because we are going to be doing a MAJOR upgrade of the system and one person in the meeting inquired about having a Quality Planning Checklist (one of our tools for ensuring quality requirements are met). Everyone else in the room didn't see the need because the ERP/MRP system wasn't "part" of the Quality system!

If anyone has a clear, simple statement or two that will help us all understand each other, I'd appreciate it.
This two headed monster has raised its ugly existance in our manufacturing facility lately and our Management Representative is the GM! [And my first year anniversary just a month away.]

Saddened,
Doug
 
Q

qualitychic

#7
Re: ERP/MRP system as part of the QMS

I agree with Stijloor here...

Too bad for them. They could have probably streamlined most of your documentation just by including their MRP system as part of your QMS (as I think it should be...)
 

al40

Quite Involved in Discussions
#8
Re: ERP/MRP system as part of the QMS

This two headed monster has raised its ugly existance in our manufacturing facility lately and our Management Representative is the GM! [And my first year anniversary just a month away.]

Saddened,
Doug
Nice post, We're currently revieiwng ERP/MRP systems for our new company and I was wondering how to address the system(s) from a quality standpoint.

Thanks,

al40
 
Last edited:
S

somerqc

#9
AL40,

Do you want some tips from a quality standpoint or a quality system standpoint? I realize it is semantics, but, it may not be semantics to your higher-ups.

Having worked with an ERP system with a ISO 9001 compliant system, I did learn a great deal about how to handle the ISO 9001 requirements (let's just say there were very few instructions - the software did the controlling of the process).

We are also reviewing potential ERP systems. Most do have a pretty good quality module so that is much less of a concern than it used to be (used to be very difficult to find).

What are you concerned/wondering about?

John
 
P

Pazuzu - 2009

#10
I battle this fight too. The President views the QMS to be an ISO driven 'aspect' of the overall business and therefore has little regard for it, only keeping it around because it makes the customers happy. I cant understand how anyone can think we have a QMS in place just so we can get a certifcate on the wall.

Usually I'll explain it as such: Take the "Q" out and what's left behind is what we have and is part of everything we do...a Management System. It's how we manage the business regardless of ISO requirements. All the "Q" means is that a credible body acknowledges that we have the adequate controls in place to effectively sustain and improve how we run our business. It is not a seperate entity...the QMS is exactly what we do. Dont think ISO...leave that part to me.

It just sucks that he's a stubborn mule! :frust::D
 
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