Internal Audit Corrective Actions

MarilynJ6354

Involved In Discussions
#1
The number of corrective actions entered by employees has diminished greatly in the last 7 years to the point where none have been created in 2016 yet. When asked, managers say we have a lot less problems now. When I ask how they measure improvement, they focus on customer surveys and feedback and that's it. Is it acceptable to have a corrective action system that isn't being used? Employees say they don't bother; they pick up the phone and fix the problem, but then there is nothing documenting the problems. Frustrated!
 
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normzone

Trusted Information Resource
#2
It's a common enough problem in small organizations where you can fix a problem by catching two people together in the hall at the right moment and convening a meeting on the spot.

I work at illustrating the challenges I face in order to keep employees conscious of the need to document corrective actions.

"John - We're going to get a nonconformance in our external audit for no effective corrective action system."

"Norman, you're being ridiculous - we fix things every month !"

" Yeah, but can you prove it to me? Where is the auditable record ?"

Drive the point home - every time a problem gets discussed, bring up the issue of root cause, correction and corrective actions, until they start doing it themselves.

I'm certain there's a better way to get this done, but I work with small outfits and limited management commitment, so my toolbox has a lot of informal techniques in it.
 
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Sidney Vianna

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Staff member
Admin
#3
they pick up the phone and fix the problem,
That is only the correction component of the corrective action loop; the problem with that approach is the fact that the same problem could be being fixed numerous times and the organization loses efficiency along the way. If the problem truly deserves a corrective action, continual shortcutting of the process means that you don't learn from the mistake.

It is wise not to inundate the corrective action process with trivial, minor issues, but let's not forget that the true indicator of a highly-effective QMS is the absence of customer dissatisfaction and great measures of productivity and efficiency.

By the way, the title of the tread refers to internal audit (driven) corrective actions. But the post does not seem to refer to outcomes of internal audits.
 

Golfman25

Trusted Information Resource
#4
Under no circumstances do you want to "over document" your corrective action system. When the documentation becomes more burdensome than the action, people will rightfully stop bothering. Best thing to do is set some criteria when documentation is required. That way the "big" problem get a systematic fix while the small problems get fixed without burdening everyone.
 
J

JoShmo

#5
The number of corrective actions entered by employees has diminished greatly in the last 7 years to the point where none have been created in 2016 yet. When asked, managers say we have a lot less problems now. When I ask how they measure improvement, they focus on customer surveys and feedback and that's it. Is it acceptable to have a corrective action system that isn't being used? Employees say they don't bother; they pick up the phone and fix the problem, but then there is nothing documenting the problems. Frustrated!
I'm getting mixed messges here. Firstly, what are "problems"? Product non-conformitys? Improvement isn't about surveys and feedback. The customer mayn't notice. You could be killing yourselfs internally and that needs fixing. How do you document non-conformitys? Do you make every case into a CAR or do you allow correction? I see symptoms here which need understanding
 

michajel86

Starting to get Involved
#6
:notme:Short and easy answer : Process approach -requirement of QMS.

Additionally
if i understand you correctly, than I would propose :Normative from 9001 clause 8.5.2" corrective actions " where is stated "A documented procedure shall be established to define requirements for" and check sections a) to e)..
 
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