Updated: Apr 6, 2022
Principle 4 (ISO 9000): Process Approach
Quality results are achieved more predicatively, more quickly, with improvement, and at lower costs when the process is managed. It means applying the principles of system design on the human system. AV work is especially dependent on every team doing their job, and poor quality in any team ruins the reputation of the whole company.
Applying this principle for the first time requires that each member of each team be included in a benchmark session to determine what they normally do. What are the “inputs” and “outputs” for each process owner in each department? Does everyone in the team agree that this is indeed the process that they follow? Who approves the work? Do the people responsible have the necessary training and resources to do their job? What happens if that individual is not there? If someone needs to review a matter, is it defined exactly what it is they are reviewing for? What documents (or files) provide a record that a particular action was taken and that a competent individual attests to its successful compliance?
Document the process, by written lists, flowcharts, or other means.
Then analyze the process. Is anything missing that is necessary to assure compliance with the original order, as requested specifically by the client? Can things be done in a more efficient manner by adjustments in the sequence of work, better information flow, more timely references, or timing the work differently? Are actions being duplicated, or erroneously expected to be done by other teams? Are more resources required to get the job done right? Does everyone understand their job, and the job everyone else is doing, so that they understand how they fit into the overall picture? Is accountability unambiguously defined, or are there undefined grey areas? Are there exceptions to the process, when a different process is required? Have decision ‘trees’ been described? Are there records that the process is being followed? Are there clear ‘handoffs’ from one process and department to another? Have risks, consequences, and impacts of activities on clients, vendors, and other interested parties been evaluated?
The Process Approach: think it, do it, constantly improve it. In the words of Philip Crosby, “Good things only happen when planned; bad things happen on their own”.