The costs of quality and of developing your management system.
Not getting Quality Management right can be expensive, but the cost of developing a management system might be less than you think, especially if you qualify for a grant!
We can provide our customers with valuable information with regards to funding for a management system. Substantial grants are available to companies who meet the scheme’s criteria.
SafeWork NSW provide business grants for attending safety training. The grant is only small (currently $500) and a one off, but every little helps.
A good Management Systems consultant doesn’t just concentrate on conformance to the standard, but can also provide efficiency savings and risk mitigation by identifying improvement opportunities. Questions like ‘why do you do that’ often prompt answers like ‘because that’s what I was told to do’ and we often uncover redundant or inefficient processes in companies of all sizes.
Example: A manager at a company we visited in 2012 stated that machine operators were expected to check 1 in 10 products (apparently a company wide known checking regime) to ensure products met the drawing dimensions. The drawing provided no tolerances, but the manager stated the standard tolerance applied.
The first machine operator we spoke to had been with the company many years, but wasn’t aware of standard tolerances and had established his own limits of acceptability. He was aware of the need to apply the standard sampling regime, but quoted a different regime to the one quoted by manager.
The regime the machine operator adopted was more frequent than required meaning wasted time measuring and then because of his incorrect understanding of the tolerances he was also passing unacceptable parts thereby risking the company’s reputation. He was also unnecessarily rejecting some parts and wasting further money.
Additionally, the operator wasn’t required to record any results so there was no way to determine if the machine was trending towards more failures.
Instigating better controls (specified tolerances, dynamic sampling regimes and recording the results allowed the time spent checking to be reduced, the likelihood of sending rejects to customers reduced, the number of rejected or reworked parts reduced and data captured provided insights for preventive maintenance.
A financial win all round!
Cost of Failing
You only have to look at VW and the diesel scandal to see the cost of failing to comply with requirements, but this company should have known better.
In 2015 VW was accused of adjusting it’s engine management systems so that they could detect and change their performance to be ‘environmentally friendly’ whilst being tested for emissions. Being exposed and finally admitting guilt VW were ordered to pay US$2.8 billion fine by a Federal Judge, but this sum is probably insignificant when you consider the damage to VW’s reputation this caused and the costs of correcting the issue worldwide.
Quality Management is about meeting the requirements, not cheating them. What’s ironic about this is that in 2003 VW put a company supplying ignition coils out of business because their products were sub-standard and had to be swapped out. There’s not much history left of that expensive event, but we found this https://www.consumeraffairs.com/news03/vw_coils.html. You’d think VW would have learnt from their own supplier’s mistakes!