The best business owners and entrepreneurs are always looking for ways to improve their firms. They strive to streamline their businesses, boost productivity, and improve the quality of their product or service.
One of the best ways to do this is by implementing a quality management system (QMS).
What is a quality management system (QMS)?
A QMS is a set of processes, structures, responsibilities and procedures that help businesses meet certain objectives and policies. The goal is to ensure continuous improvement in business operations so that customers remain satisfied, your firm meets regulatory requirements, boosts productivity and minimises waste.
The best QMS’s help translate your internal goals and purposes into procedures that each person in your organisation can follow.
Implementing such systems can be tricky. We advise seeking out an ISO 9001 consultant UK to help as they are well worth it. Here’s a few reasons why you need a QMS:
1) Standardise operations
Inconsistency in process guarantees inconsistency in outcomes. This can range anywhere from:
- Reducing the overall quality of your product/service
- Reducing poor safety standards
- Decreasing the number of unsatisfied customers
Your clients will often be just as bothered if your operations aren’t consistent as they will be if they receive a sub-standard product.
A QMS enables you to ensure consistency across the board. It requires you to define best practices and goals, which employees can then follow in their roles. Everyone following the same practices and goals brings stability, which in turn reduces waste and dissatisfaction with customer service. This stability also helps you make more accurate forecasts about your firm’s trajectory.
2) Manage innovation
Innovation and continuous improvement is always vital. Today, technology evolves more quickly and there’s usually a firm just around the corner looking to disrupt your industry.
Continually improving and innovating is therefore the only way to continue growing your firm; to insulate it from threats and improve performance. But to do this successfully, you need a method, a framework for working towards success and managing growth.
A QMS provides the method for employees, whether that’s for a new process or enabling them to problem solve. Establishing standards provides a benchmark to compare work against and a culture of innovation. With such standards, you can audit processes to assess and encourage progress.
3) Understand what’s not working
Every business goes through periods of flux. Maybe profits are down, there are more complaints than usual from customers, or you are missing key internal targets.
Without a QMS, understanding what’s going wrong can be very tricky. There is little standardisation against which you can assess processes, and there can be disagreement over in-house over responsibilities. If nobody has clear responsibility for a problem, how are you going to fix it?
Remedying such issues without a QMS can be guesswork, because there is no universally understood framework for how things should be done.
Implementing a QMS allows you to connect the dots when things are going wrong and seek out the root cause of your latest woes. Where everyone understands the process, it is much easier to find flaws and fix them. And where people clearly understand who is responsible for what, you can work with the relevant team to get things back on track.
Ultimately, there are endless reasons why you need to enact a QMS, from boosting safety standards, productivity and efficiency, to ensuring you meet regulatory requirements. The effect is to boost profits and maximise customer satisfaction, so don’t way too long before enacting your QMS!