Re: System Building
Welcome to the Cove, mikenita88.
I'm not sure if this will answer your question, but here is my take from my own professional experience...
“Rome was not built in a day” is the applicable saying here. Building an effective and efficient system will not happen overnight and the methods to go about building one may vary from organization to organization, culture to culture. What I can share with you is my own experience in this area.
1. Management Commitment and Leadership Support is Key!
If the senior leadership is not onboard, your attempts to build an effective and efficient system will remain on the blueprints. Should leadership be content with their existing system or happy with that piece of paper on the wall, your own efforts towards building something more will result in you experiencing high levels of frustration.
Finding ways to convince management that this is worth exploring have been discussed on the Cove previously, I believe.
That being said, I was fortunate to work with senior managers that wanted a true business management system. They didn’t care if the process was Safety or Accounting or Security or Production or Quality…we all used the same document control system and the same failure treatment system and the same training protocols. Why? So that we were speaking the same language. We did not have an ISO 9001 compliant system….we had a business management system that ISO 9001 complied to.
2. There Can Be No Improvement Without Routine!
If the culture, however, is not one for following routines – unless they are being observed – then face it…improving the system is the least of your worries.
I am used the following “steps” in establishing routine management:
- Execution to Standards
- Audits to the Standards – failures link back to Standardization and/or Training
- Failure Treatment – treatments link back to Standardization and/or Training
- Stable Results
Only once there is a culture of routine can improvement aspects be confidently looked at.
3. X Marks the Spot
You may know where you want to get to, but if you have no idea where you are, you will not reach your destination. This requires an assessment of your current state to something (ISO standards, existing documentation, etc.). Once gaps are identified, action plans can be developed to address the gaps.
4. Forget the Big Bang!
Sudden change will shock everyone, so my own experience is to start small. We brought in ISO 9001. Then we brought in ISO 14001. Then we realized our company had their own internal process requirements (in areas like Information Systems, Human Resources, Procurement, Management Systems, Quality, Planning, Sales, etc.), so we brought those in. Then along came ISRS (safety) so we threw in OHSAS 18001 along with it. Then along came Sarbanes-Oxley. These requirements came at us over time, but we absorbed them into our already existing system rather than creating something brand new for each standard.
5. That Kumbaya Moment
You know you’re well on your way to having a true business management system when, in a meeting to review the site’s performance from the previous month, Information Systems discusses some unscheduled server downtime and not only do they refer to their Nonconformance Report (that THEY initiated) but people from other departments are helping them consider options for possible root cause analysis!