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Electronic document approval

Discussion in 'ISO 9001:2015 - Quality Management Systems' started by Graham Thorpe, Feb 28, 2019.

  1. Graham Thorpe

    Graham Thorpe Member

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    So I am trying to break away from my roots and have no paper in our system. Traditionally document approval was carried out by signing a copy of a document but I want to ditch that.

    We are a small evolving company and what we do works but we need to look at how what we do now fits if the company gets bigger. The gap is there is no real control over the authorisation of documents.

    Our documents are office files / autocad files / PCB layouts / software / all the normal stuff a techie company produces.

    I guess I could look for some smart document management software but not sure I want more software.


    A white board session between the 6 of us came up with a few ideas but the one that fits best with what we currently do is to rigorously control the access to file storage on our network. Only ‘approvers’ can move files into the Approved files area. If I can demonstrate control of the Approved area would this system convince assessors? The process would be:

    Document ready for approval – review meeting with relevant people ( output is a list all approved documents) – if approved the ‘gatekeeper’ moves document to the Approved area. (We plan to have a short weekly meeting to address ‘issues’ any way, a sort of perpetual Management Review)



    As always suggestions and comments welcome.
     
  2. Golfman25

    Golfman25 Well-Known Member

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    If it works for you, I don't see an issue with it.
     
  3. John Michael Kane

    John Michael Kane Member

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    I just started using SignRequest (https://signrequest.com/en) -- easy to use, MUCH cheaper than DocuSign and very flexible on payment plans. I've tested it with numerous people on my team and they all like the ease of use.
     
  4. John C. Abnet

    John C. Abnet Well-Known Member

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    Allow me to congratulate and affirm you @Graham Thorpe for realizing that the people in your organization today and (hopefully) the size of your organization today, will NOT be the same in 10 years.
    Well done for considering a scalable approach.

    All the council you have received thus far is good and sound. For an extremely simple option, remember, existing Microsoft windows folders can have access control assigned to them. For example, one company I worked with had (for each category) folders identified as ACTIVE- DRAFT- OBSOLETE. The only folder that allowed all access was "DRAFT" (it allowed the teams to use it as a sandbox, in order to draft and propose changes). The ACTIVE and OBSOLETE folders only allowed access to those with strategically assigned access.

    Hope this helps.

    Be well.
     
  5. tony s

    tony s Well-Known Member

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    You're a techie company. If you adopt a techie method, as long as you can satisfy the relevant clauses of ISO 9001, there should be no problem convincing the auditors - unless you have a dinosaur auditor.
     
  6. Graham Thorpe

    Graham Thorpe Member

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    Thanks for your comments.
    All our files are stored on NAS and all permissions are controlled at the *NIX level. This ensures that all users on the system get the permissions from one place. We too have a sandbox where folks can play and tryout ideas, Next week its deciding which stuff in there we keep or delete. And then its control of memory sticks and reviewing if we should allow remote access. Always more fun stuff to do :)
    Graham
     
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  7. Said BELAJ

    Said BELAJ Member

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    Sounds fine. The meeting note should be documented in as an evidence of the decision.

    There should 1 or 2 staff who got the right access to move the files.

    Regards,



     
  8. Andy Nichols

    Andy Nichols Moderator Staff Member

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    Why?
     
  9. Graham Thorpe

    Graham Thorpe Member

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    So the company does not stop when Fred falls under a bus?
     

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