If your Company has no idea about how to begin a quality improvement project like ISO 9001 or AS9100, or how adopting a QMS standard will affect your business, examine the following process map. All elements in the process map are controlled by your plan, except billing, invoicing and payments (Accounting).
Key Realization Processes and Applicable QMS Procedures
The process map from our page named “How to Create a Quality Control Plan” is an overview of a typical business operation. Click/tap the flowchart to enlarge the image then click/tap outside the image to return:
Industry standard plans for quality control are process oriented, where each process has inputs and outputs. Follow the arrows in the process map shown above to see typical interactions for business operations to learn more about how to begin a quality improvement project. The map will help you visualize the quality control system process from the beginning at “Business Plan and Objectives” to the end at “Shipping” and “Billing” your Customer.
The very first step in the change process is to convene a management meeting to document “commitment” for the quality improvement project. Management commitment is the most important aspect about how to begin a quality improvement project. Schedule the improvements by downloading the free implementation schedule then pro-rate the dates to define milestones for implementation of your Company’s quality management system. An output from the meeting should be a management directive that is posted on the Company’s communication board to begin a quality improvement project. During the management meeting, complete as many agenda items as possible that are listed in the Management Meeting Report form.
The next step in the how to begin a quality improvement project is to complete an Engineering Order to authorize the adoption of your new quality management system.
After logging-in, click “Configuration” in the left-side vertical menu under category named “QA System”. On the right-side of your screen, click “Engineering Order” under column named “Records”. In the resulting screen, pulldown “Field Value” then select “1” to see a typical EO for adopting a quality program. Close the tab/window to return to this page or keep the page open to prepare yourself for browsing how to create a quality control plan, which is a component of how to begin a quality improvement project.
The management directive and EO become the first records that demonstrate compliance with your new quality program. The records demonstrate your team is learning how to begin a quality improvement project. The next record that you create for QMS compliance is dependent upon the procedure you select to begin the implementation phase of your improvement project. We recommend you select an area in your business that really needs some tender loving care or will return the most on your investment of time and attention.
Where to start in the overall process is a business decision, but records for the entire QMS are required for compliance. Follow the inputs and outputs in the QMS numbered documents in your quality kit to determine applicable form(s) to complete for demonstrating compliance to quality management system requirements. If your Company is volunteering to document its quality plan, the keep-it-simple solution is sometimes the best using a General Purpose Plan!
Over the life of the implementation phase of your change process, add a sample of records to respond to questions in the first-half completed assessment form in your kit to finalize your internal audit. Periodically convene management meetings during the change process and produce management meeting reports. When you complete the assessment checklist in your kit, assert compliance with your new quality management system and tip your hat because your team has learned a lot about how to begin a quality improvement project.
We always recommend a pre-assessment by your Registrar to validate your assertion of compliance prior to performing the certification audit. If your Company’s goal is to earn a pedigree number, we also recommend first contact with your Registrar as soon as you begin the improvement project and they will adjust your perspective about how to begin a quality improvement project.
After successful certification or verification of compliance with your new plan from an outside source, the last step is to document validation of your quality management system using the verification and validation form in your kit. This record cements the fact that your Company follows through with all its actions.
Learn more about how to create a quality control plan and enhance your knowledge about how to begin a quality improvement project.
The KISS Principle suggests Company operations work best when they are kept simple rather than made complex.
If your Company is determined to apply the KISS Principle, consider Paperless Efficient QMS™ when your operational goals are to positively keep things as simple as possible.
Consider a practical general purpose quality system plan if your Company needs documentation that is less complex than ISO 9001 or AS9100 quality systems.
How to begin a quality improvement project using our templates:
Search for the word “your” using your word processor and replace the text with your business name or logo, which makes the template appear as though you created it. Demos display watermarks but product downloads have no digital rights management restrictions, watermarks or copyright legends. You can use them on as many computers as needed in your business operation according to the license agreement.
Help facilitate your QMS transition using the following guide to implement any program:
The QMS survey is the implementation guide for any of our quality management systems. Sources for answers to survey questions are contained in the quality manual and documents referenced by the manual, which summarizes Company policies. The quality manual is a short story about how to begin a quality improvement project.
We suggest you read the entire manual to understand the scope of the improvement project to kick start your learning curve about how to begin a quality improvement project. Make a notation whenever the manual refers to a procedure or form. During review of the manual, only skim through the referenced documents to maintain attention on the manual. The QA manual does not reference every document in your kit but keep them handy because they are needed to answer all the questions in the survey.
Begin to complete the survey after review of the manual. At first, only answer questions in the survey that can be answered by referring to paragraph numbers in the manual. When all “policy” related questions are answered, begin to review the documents that were referenced by the manual. Refer to the manual, referenced documents and non-referenced documents in your Kit until all questions are answered in the survey. When the survey is complete, integrate the procedures and forms into your business operation and celebrate because your team is much more familiar with how to begin a quality improvement project.
During the above process, you will have educated yourself about how to begin a quality improvement project, which will help you to facilitate the transition with your employees and to prepare for interaction with your Registrar and Customers.