If you can measure quality, you can manage quality. Pt 2

Now onto the measuring (phew, finally got there)

Before we jump into measurement it is important to note that ISO 9001:2015 requires quality objectives to be measured, monitored and improved. We’ve covered an example of improvement in pt 1, so we will save monitoring for a future post.

Looking at the finalised objective: For UK orders placed before 3 pm, products in stock will be delivered to the customer within 3 working days.

What needs to be measured:

Date and time an order was placed.

Time taken for an order to be processed and ready for dispatch

Date (and time?) an order was received by the customer

From those few questions alone, you can probably see that you need orders to have a unique identifier (an order number) and some form of tracking reference. Don’t forget these are requirements themselves. Generating a unique order number is a requirement for you ordering process, a tracking reference is a requirement on your supplier (in this case the courier). Don’t assume these requirements are already being met, ensure they are captured appropriately.

This data needs to be easily cross-referenced to find out exactly how long it took for a specific order to be delivered.

The data also needs to be easily extracted and manipulated to provide a report that provides evidence to whether the objective has been met or not.

If you can’t do that, then you can’t measure this objective. And if you can’t measure it you can’t manage it.

You can’t produce and maintain targets for your employees or suppliers, you can’t identify the root cause of customer dissatisfaction (is it processing time, the courier?). You can’t focus your improvement actions (employee training, infrastructure, change of courier).

Fundamentally any decisions made are not “data driven” or risk managed.

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