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Hi everyone, new quality employee here!

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Jack G, Jun 15, 2020.

  1. Jack G

    Jack G Member

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    Hi Everyone,

    Hope you're all doing well!

    I have some quality experience from Pharma and some lab work both QA and QC.

    I have just started a new job and I have been thrown in at the deep end to start and manage their Quality side of things! I am here for some advice to get me started, looking for any recommended reading etc.

    The company imports raw materials (nutraceuticals) and sells them in the UK so it seems to fall under the food category. If anyone has any advice or guidance on how to get started, please let me know, I am quite nervous!
     
  2. Miner

    Miner Moderator Staff Member

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    Welcome to QFO Jack.
     
  3. Jack G

    Jack G Member

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    Thank you, Miner.
     
  4. Andy Nichols

    Andy Nichols Moderator Staff Member

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    Welcome Jack!

    Firstly, since you're (literally) in the food chain, get acquainted with the applicable regulations - maybe no chapter and verse, but discover what is applicable, whether the company has the latest and greatest, how they get updates, does anyone have the responsibility to keep on top of these?

    One important thing is to become familiar with the processes of the business: Supplier selection, monitoring, supplier performance, customers' needs, level of performance in meeting customers needs and how customer service (complaints) are handled.

    A Quality person needs to have no blind spots on such matters. You don't say if the company has a formal quality system or not. If it does (something like ISO 9001) then find out if the system is actually followed. Research the QMS documentation, then go and talk with people to see if their description is similar to what you read (do a process at a time).

    If not, some of the performance issues might indicate that the lack of fomality is a problem. How big is the company? Headcount?
     
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  5. yodon

    yodon Well-Known Member

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    I'll extend my welcome to the forum, too!

    No experience in that market or in that sector but here are a couple of websites that may be helpful:
    Sorry I can't be more help.
     
  6. Jack G

    Jack G Member

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    Thank you for the welcome and the sources of information!
     
  7. Jack G

    Jack G Member

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    Thank you Andy!

    I feel that most of the responsibility is going to come down to me to keep everything updated. I am currently working through all of our suppliers and products and seeing what documentation we have such as CoAs, MSDS, Product specs, HALAL, GMP etc. One thing I am not so sure on, is what is the baseline in terms of approving suppliers.

    There has been no training so far, but I am desperately hoping that I will be getting trained in what you have mentioned such as Supplier Approval process and change control etc.

    The company seem to have some sort of QMS and there are some documents I have seen such as Internal Audits, Supplier Questionnaire and Customer Feedback. I can't seem to find any SOPs which I hoped they had.

    The company is small, about 30-40 people, however, it is a virtual company and doesn't really have an office as most people work from home.

    All quite overwhelming. I was hoping there would be a solid training programme in place.
     
  8. John C. Abnet

    John C. Abnet Well-Known Member

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    Good day @Jack G and welcome to the site.

    May I ask if your organization is certified to any of the ISO family of standards?

    Be well.
     
  9. Jack G

    Jack G Member

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    Thank you!

    And they appear to be certified to ISO 9001:2015
     
  10. Andy Nichols

    Andy Nichols Moderator Staff Member

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    Yeah, reality bites! The difficulty with "training" is it's often written by people who have already learned the ropes and it's what THEY think YOU should know! Not always the same thing.

    TBH, you don't really need "training" (as a result of the above). You have simply to observe - acutely - what goes on. If everything's done through the network, then if you have access and can check, comparing results to the various documents is going to be the principle way to determine if a process is being followed. Many organizations have somewhat of a QMS, but the fact that it's difficult to discover where the SOPs are, they probably haven't considered it important (of the person who runs the IT infrastructure didn't get that memo...)
     
  11. John C. Abnet

    John C. Abnet Well-Known Member

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    Good day @Jack G ;
    Thank you for that information.
    a) I council that it is imperative for you to find out if indeed your organization IS certified to ISO 9001:2015.

    b) I council that you "follow" the ISO 9001:2015 (and any other applicable) forums on this site. In addition, you can peruse/search existing discussion topics on the ISO 9001:2015 forum on this site and/or post your own questions.

    c) You will want to confirm if you are being held accountable/responsible (it should not be the burden of an individual, but sadly that is how many organizations function) for ISO 9001:2015 oversight and compliance.

    d) If you do indeed have responsibility(ies) specific to item "c)" above, I would likewise council that you ensure your organization has copy(ies) of ISO 9001:2015 (and supporting documents ISO 9000 and ISO 9004) and that you familiarize yourself with it.

    e) If you do indeed have responsibility(ies) specific to item "c)" above, I would likewise council that you determine where your organization stands in regards to your 3rd party audit cycle (i.e. when was your last surveillance audit and what were the results ???...when was your last re-certification audit and what were the results? )

    Hope this helps.
    Be well.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2020
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  12. Andy Nichols

    Andy Nichols Moderator Staff Member

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    Jack. As @John C. Abnet suggested, it's important to verify this. I would add that - if you are in the UK - you check any available certification the firm has been given should bear the "UKAS" accreditation mark. If it doesn't, then you may not be able to put much "faith" in compliance or effectiveness of any claimed QMS to ISO 9001:2015. Some alarm bells are for me, ringing in the distance, just from the little information you've shared so far...
     
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  13. johnnymo77

    johnnymo77 Active Member

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    Try EU Directive 2002/46/EC.
     
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  14. Jack G

    Jack G Member

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    Hi John and thank you!

    Yes, they're certified to ISO 9001. It appears we have a Quality consultant that very occasionally does some work. However, it is also a virtual company with a small office in the UK that only a few team members use.
     

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