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Quality Conscience - Doing the Right Thing

We are proud to celebrate World Quality Week from 7-11 November and this year’s theme: ‘Quality conscience: doing the right thing’.

Throughout the week, we will take part in internal collaboration sessions to continue to support the importance of quality within Nomad Digital and industry. Head of QHSE, John Mills shares his views on Quality Management Systems and the connections to wider parts of organisations and how sometimes this can be a difficult balancing act for an organisation and its’ people to get right.

Doing The Right Thing

Quality Management was always traditionally thought of as a system managed by the Quality, QHSE or HSEQ department.  This would therefore make Quality Management somewhat alien to other departments and functions within a business. Over the years, progression in digital systems and combined Business Management Systems (BMS) have paved the way for organisations to link and integrate everything together. There has been a transition from traditional Quality Management Systems (QMS) to a more rounded BMS, integrating other standards and requirements.

Quality connects everything within an organisation, often a lot more than Line Managers or Supervisors are aware. Line Managers, Supervisors and employees actively and subconsciously manage quality throughout their work and with their teams, however there can be the occasional time when the process of linking back to the BMS breaks down. Why does this happen?

Often, the speed of work and even life pushes teams to ‘patch’ issues or immediate tasks to complete daily tasks, but in adopting this approach, processes that require documentation are not utilised or enforced, and a live fluid process takes over that can be prone to interpretation, change and active resilience when not established.

quality BMS

A Balancing Act

Getting the balance right of when to stop, put the flag up or press the red button to take time to analyse and rectify the root cause of the issue is a must. This avoids further issues or failure repetition that at first, may seem a large commitment to achieve, but later down the line would be much less significant than the repeated issues or shortfalls seen.

A host of quality programmes are out there – Stop For Quality, Quality Time Out, Golden Rules, Take 5 For Quality – the list is endless. They are all aimed at promoting quality awareness and ownership from everyone and not just a department or quality professional. Driven by Managers and Supervisors can help to embrace the ethics of the initiative and embed within to be successful.

All Inclusive Quality

No one wants to portray poor quality standards by making mistakes which can incur costs and delays, but in order to do the right thing, a sequence of processes, commitment and consistency need to be set in place. Human error is something we cannot 100% eradicate in the world of quality, and even as technology takes over, the programming for that technology is created and developed by humans. As humans we commit to doing our best for what we do in our roles, but we all also have a role to play in thinking with a wider capacity to include issues and problems when they occur and their wider effects on other departments, external stakeholders or even other department members in their team.


Final Thoughts

The classic saying ‘Quality is Everyone’s Business’ cannot be further from the truth. For organisations to be successful, the waterfall of quality must cascade down from Executive Level through to the entire business and have commitment, resources and most importantly clear understanding, to get it right. Every single person, in every single task they do, contributes to quality and doing the right thing, and doing it with the right conscience to succeed.