A quality management system is a method that helps you accomplish your company objectives. These objectives may relate to reducing or eliminating quality deficiencies and putting procedures in place that will prevent these quality defects to occur in the future.
In order to meet these objectives, your organisation should have a predetermined plan in place. This will ensure all your employees are striving toward a common goal.
Your organisation should also have strong support from your CEO – without this, the quality system will more than likely fail. Prior to the implementation of a quality management system, the CEO should be fully convinced and informed about the need of introducing such a system. If the CEO is not convinced from the beginning but project goes ahead to implement the system, there may be a lack of interest from the CEO later on. This may result in a reduction of resources to implement the system effectively, or the failure to help lead throughout.
Once the CEO has agreed that a quality management system needs to be implemented, it is recommended that a project leader be selected. This leader will be responsible for driving the project. This leader will be responsible for surveying the companies’ needs, in order to establish what their current quality management practices are.
Once your organisation's needs are established, the scope of the quality management system must be defined. The needs will differ depending on the stakeholder. The stakeholders include employers, employees, suppliers, contractors, community, regulators and general public.
The scope for your quality management system could be as small as one product restricted to one department, or could cover multiple departments producing several products. This will be up to your to decide.
After the scope has been identified, it is important for a quality policy to be implemented. A quality policy will help you deliver principles to your organisation.
This will be followed by identifying the authorities and responsibilities of any activity within the quality management system.
Once these tasks have been carried out, it will be time to plan, write and implement the quality management system.
A quality management system should be process focused, prevention based and aimed at responding to your problems.
A process focused system will be developed with the aim of managing any process variability, which will lead to variability in products and services. This will ensure that your organisation is always operating to its best practice.
If the management system is prevention based, this will mean it is operating in a way that will notice any errors before they occur and mitigate them from happening, rather than solving them after they have occurred.
A quality system that aims at responding to problems with corrective action tools implemented into it, to ensure that if a problem does arise, the root cause of this will be found, therefore reducing the likelihood of it happening again.