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Process and Procedure

Discussion in 'ISO 9001:2015 - Quality Management Systems' started by Rob K, Nov 30, 2020.

  1. Rob K

    Rob K Member

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    The dictionary definition of "Process" = a series of actions or steps taken in order to achieve a particular end. If an action, or step, was to carry out a "Procedure" (dictionary definition = an established or official way of doing something), would it be possible/correct to define a process as having just one step?
     
  2. Andy Nichols

    Andy Nichols Moderator Staff Member

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    Good question. I believe the answer is yes. If you consider that a process transforms something, then a simple stamping is a process: a sheet of metal is input to a press tool and stamped/blanked/drawn into a part in one "blow" of the tool, that part is the output. Unless you consider the loading and unloading of the part to be further steps...
     
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  3. pkfraser

    pkfraser Active Member

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    Andy
    On the other hand, if you don't consider that it has to transform anything(!) - for example Managing Inventory - and focus on action required to achieve an objective,
    then also Yes. Some tasks may be simple if you do them every day, but a newcomer may need to break each one down into distinct steps. Russian dolls!
     
  4. Andy Nichols

    Andy Nichols Moderator Staff Member

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    Yes, Peter. In that case, I might agree, but then I don't believe that everything is a process - and warehousing falls into that category. There are a number of ISO 9001 requirements which I don't believe are processes either. I have thought long and hard about such things and read lots by yourself, David Hoyle and other luminaries and, clearly, the TC 176 committee - for whatever reason - seem to have taken up the "process" cudgel for everything. I can't see it, myself.
     
  5. RoxaneB

    RoxaneB Moderator Staff Member

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    I would offer that managing inventory is transforming something...data/information.

    Input | Data in - Product counts
    Process | Compare to max/min levels
    Output | Data out - A purchase order when minimum levels are hit
     
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  6. pkfraser

    pkfraser Active Member

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    Andy

    No argument on the principle you state(!) What I meant by Managing Inventory was keeping stock levels at the required level (ie given that as the objective, it requires certain actions to be taken (check stock levels, order more in good time, chase suppliers etc). ISO dropped the "transformation" definition some years ago when they realised that not all processes are manufacturing-related. But using their current definition I reckon that (for example) "Implementing a policy" is a process, but one that has actions spread across a range of other processes (ie a task in one process may actually be part of another process as well (which I don't think that ISO have realised)).
     
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  7. pkfraser

    pkfraser Active Member

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    Roxanne

    As I said to Andy, I don't reckon that you need to find transformations in every case - in the example you give, the stock count at that date will continue to exist. Yes, they will result in POs and updated stock levels, but the key point is that you have met the objective of maintaining suitable stock levels.
     
  8. John C. Abnet

    John C. Abnet Well-Known Member

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    All-
    Please allow me to weigh in on this. Consistent with @RoxaneB 's comments, I would propose that almost ANYTHING can be viewed through the lens of a "process".

    - Phone call
    Input (the numbers)
    Conversion (the intent of the call conveyed-information shared)
    Output (gratification of a connection; prompted actions; etc..etc...)

    Hmmm..this conversation seems to be taking us back down a previous path...

    http://www.qualityforumonline.com/f...termine-the-processes-needed.3042/#post-21599

    Be well.
     
  9. Hitokiri Aoshi

    Hitokiri Aoshi Member

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    Everything is a process. Every process can have sub-process. All process have inputs and outputs.

    This is my view.

    [information, people, etc] -->[Get Customer Item Process]-->[final product + paperworks + invoice]
    [...] -> [Quotation] -> [Sourcing] -> [Logistic] -> [Value add] -> [Logistic] -> [Shipping and Billing] -->[...]

    and each of those can be further broken down, until you get to a point where (i am joking of course or am i? Someone had to go through these process design at a certain point to create all these functions)

    [work instruction, worker, sheet metal, machine, resources] --> [push button on machine] --> [time stamp information, sheet metal with hole on it, billable hour, "beep"]
    [physical button movement, sensor, pre-programmed action, breadboard] --> [correct motor signal management] --> [signal to motor sent for desired length, feedback action complete signal]

    these single flow process diagram can then be elaborated with a reverse information diagram, into a loop, etc etc.

    anyway, the my view is regardless of these discussions, the goal is to have as little requirement as possible to have the consistent, and controlled outcome.
     
  10. Hitokiri Aoshi

    Hitokiri Aoshi Member

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    oh and since i now basically do a warehouse, there is ton of process here. this is a super high level Quality Manual process chart I newly created from what i can scrap up from the previous QA Manager who ghosted the company...lol...

    welcome ANY critics.

    upload_2020-12-16_16-29-52.png
     
  11. pkfraser

    pkfraser Active Member

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    Hitokiri
    Dare I ask - who uses this diagram? I have never seen the point in drawing something like this other than to convince yourself, and maybe an assessor, that you have thought about all the sections of 9001. Is it a business asset?
    Just taking one small example - what do the two "Communication" boxes signify? And why do they not appear throughout the diagram?
     
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