Looking For Fellow "Tree Killers"


Michelle Harpole

I am the quality systems manager for my compaany. We became certified in May of this year. At this point, I am also doc. control, corrective action, management rep, etc. We have a HUGE quality manual (20 procedures, approx. 100 Tier III). With the new revision due to be out in early 2001 (so our registrar tells us), I am wanting to trim down our instructions, reformat for better understanding, etc. The problem I am running into is that I have not found anyone else in my area who is still using paper quality manuals that I can look at and compare to. If there are any "tree killers" out there, I would like to hear from you.


Fully vaccinated are you?
I'm not so sure 'Trimming Down" is a function of media (paper vs. electronic). It sounds to me that you're looking at a thorough review of your current documents and their 'appropriateness'. Ask questions such as "Why do we need this?" and "Are there too many details here?" and address issues such as distribution (Do all these people really need a copy?).

I run into this all the time - it typically comes from the implementation where everyone is (was) trying to figure out the answer to the age old question How far and how deep do we document? The company comes up with a 'threshold' as to where to document, detail level and such which is typically beyond what is necessary.

I bring this to the forefront with every client in the very beginning. The results? From a past client in an e-mail after their sudit:

--> said that she was happy to finally win! Once again, thanks for the
--> help. You're advice was extremely important. Especially important,
--> at least in my opinion, was your help in determining where we did
--> not need to document every last thing (by using training, etc.). I
--> think that without this input, we would have spent a lot more time
--> writing things that we did not need and wasted a lot of peoples'
--> time. We were able to get the audit done in a year while we are
--> achieving record sales and profits. Who can argue with that?

You have to take a close look at what you're doing and why.
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