What ever happened to the "Process is not systemic" finding

Q

qualityboi

#1
In a past life with an ISO 9001 registered company auditors used to write up findings based on duplicated processes or singular processes that should, but did not span the entire company using the phrase "Process is not systemic". I no longer see this as a write up especially in my current organization where many processes are siloed and hardly anything is centralized. For example we have 6 different document control groups, 8 different purchasing groups, untold amounts of groups that do their own contract review, all of which use difference systems and policies reporting into different departments (yes it is extremely inefficient because we have executives that have acquired impenetrable empires)...but again, we never had a finding for any of these as a "process is not systemic"... where did that write up go? Have the 3rd party auditors given into the siloed approach to business process?
 
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Sidney Vianna

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#2
I had never heard of "the process is not systemic" as a non conformity. Obviously, in order to be a valid NC, there must be a requirement somewhere for "processes to be systemic". Where is the requirement found?
 
#3
In over 20 years, I've never encountered that either.

Sounds to me like a specific CB's auditors bias. I have written a major against the 'old' 4.2 - Quality System, because in a 2 day surveillance, everything I audited (internal audits, management review, corrective actions, etc. etc.) had a problem with it (not implemented, not to the process etc. So having written what was 14 borderline majors, I wrote on 'cover sheet' NC stating the system wasn't being implemented effectively......
 

RoxaneB

Change Agent and Data Storyteller
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#5
The only finding that I can think of is the "Process is not systematically / consistently applied as per <insert standard/company requirement here>".

The opportunity for a systematical - or standardized - approach to a process (e.g., document control) is just that...an opportunity. Unless there is a requirement... ???
 
C

Chris Ford

#6
In a past life with an ISO 9001 registered company auditors used to write up findings based on duplicated processes or singular processes that should, but did not span the entire company using the phrase "Process is not systemic". I no longer see this as a write up especially in my current organization where many processes are siloed and hardly anything is centralized. For example we have 6 different document control groups, 8 different purchasing groups, untold amounts of groups that do their own contract review, all of which use difference systems and policies reporting into different departments (yes it is extremely inefficient because we have executives that have acquired impenetrable empires)...but again, we never had a finding for any of these as a "process is not systemic"... where did that write up go? Have the 3rd party auditors given into the siloed approach to business process?
I have to agree with the others here... I've never heard of this or seen "Process is not systemic". Having multiple document control systems is not uncommon at all. I've worked in companies that had a document control system for marketing, one specifically for labeling, another for engineering, one for software design, and another for quality system documentation. So, it's not surprising to see a company with six systems. It's also not uncommon for R&D, Engineering, and Marketing to have their own purchasing functions aside from the Operations purchasing function, because their supplier requirement, and terms are specialized.

I've seen countless examples of systems broken into discrete segments across an organization. Training is a very common example where each department maintains its own training function. Some departments may employ personnel with specific responsibilities for training, and they maintain their own training records. While other organizations utilize a training department to oversee the entire company.

I'm not sure I see how either system could be inefficient if implemented properly.
 
U

Umang Vidyarthi

#7
In a past life with an ISO 9001 registered company auditors used to write up findings based on duplicated processes or singular processes that should, but did not span the entire company using the phrase "Process is not systemic". I no longer see this as a write up especially in my current organization where many processes are siloed and hardly anything is centralized.
I too have'nt heard this before, but that does not necessarily means it is wrong. Let us examine this from the auditors' point of view. (BTW I'm not an auditor)

The dictionary meaning of 'systemic' is 'of or pertaining to a system'. You have stated that the base of auditors' findings were for duplicated processes or singular process, not spaning the entire company. Since both the cases are deviating from normal system, the auditors find they are not part 'of the system', and hence, in their opinion it comes under perview of being 'not systemic'.

Umang :2cents:
 
S

Sam4Quality

#8
Quite frankly, I am particularly not an advocate of "mini-companies" inside a company. Departments having their own Purchasing, Marketing functions, especially when there IS a full-fledged department to carry out these functions, tend to isolate these departments from the SYSTEM of the company, and if not controlled, tend to become independent of the system of the company.

I totally agree that there is no clause in the standard that can justify a 'Process is not systemic' write up, but the standard itself was developed on the 8 Quality Management Principles, two of them being 'Process Approach' and 'System Approach to Management', the latter implying - Indentifying, understanding and managing a system of interrelated processes for achieving objectives that contribute to effectiveness and efficiency of the organization.
If there are several independent pockets within a company having their own set of processes and also owning processes which are actually part of other departments, how can you explain interaction of processes?
Also, do these pocket mini-processes have any link with the main departments (eg., mini-purchasing with purchasing) that actually own these processes. Isn't this implying having more than one process owner for one process, with different controls in approach, methodology and documentation?
Would'nt this cause enough confusion in the company and even make the original process owners useless to say the least?

I do not say that such systems do not work at all. They definitely do. But do they effect positively on the overall system of the organization? Please take note that the OP has also mentioned that the entire territorial approach is 'extremely inefficient'; in my belief this is only the tip of the iceberg! I believe here there is a major system(ic) problem, probably more chronic than visibly acute. And by the time it does become acute, it will be too late.
My guess? It already is.


I would write up the management "Inefficient system approach" as an observation citing one of the 8 quality management principles. Am I biased towards my own thinking? I am - which is in line with the principles on which the standards have been developed.

Ciao. :cool:
 
Q

qualityboi

#9
I guess it was just the 3rd party registrar's way of auditing to the point Sam4quality wrote, how do you have a process owner if you have 3 or 4 purchasing departments that don't even report to purchasing, as well as showing a high level process map or documenting how you do purchasing, purchasing just being an example...thanks for the comments. I guess I need to change my way of thinking about sub-optimization. I always struggled with thinking that is is really inefficient to have duplicate groups doing the same things using different methods and tools, however, in todays economy I guess I should be promoting it to save jobs.
 

Sidney Vianna

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#10
I guess it was just the 3rd party registrar's way of auditing to the point Sam4quality wrote, how do you have a process owner if you have 3 or 4 purchasing departments that don't even report to purchasing, as well as showing a high level process map or documenting how you do purchasing, purchasing just being an example...thanks for the comments. I guess I need to change my way of thinking about sub-optimization. I always struggled with thinking that is is really inefficient to have duplicate groups doing the same things using different methods and tools, however, in todays economy I guess I should be promoting it to save jobs.
A third party audit should be no replacement for proper management. I certainly agree with you that little feuds within a company are totally disfunctional and not the proper way to run a business. However, does that violate a requirement? Did you write that up as part of your internal audit? If so, why didn't it resolved? If you didn't, why?
 
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