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Advice on setting up a Quality Manual

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#1 RobPrendergast

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Posted 24 July 2017 - 10:45 AM

Hi guys,

 

I am currently looking at overhauling our company Quality Manual, as in its current form, it's a bit of a mess.

 

Does anyone have any pointers or advice on what would be best to read up on to help set a new one up from scratch? I have never done one from inception before and only ever "maintained" one. I am happy to take any and all advice and have quite a good backing from the technical manager in terms of resource expenditure. That being said, i don't want to 'throw money' at it as i am more than happy to read up and implement this off my own back.

 

Over to you guys.

 

 

Thanks

 

Rob


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#2 Peaches

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Posted 24 July 2017 - 05:57 PM

Sounds like you'll have a bit of a project on your hands!!  :sleazy:

 

When I started in my current position, I had a similar dilemma.  Do I spend my hours trying to decipher what was done which didn't match anything that was going on in the plant, or just start from scratch.  I decided to start from scratch and I am happy with the results and it was much less frustrating.  I started with the standard we were planning on being audited against, and figured out a numbering system for my programs.  I started with the master document list because I knew many of the programs and procedures that would need to be written based on my experience and the standard.  For example, one of the sections dealt with supplier approval, supplier monitoring, receiving, incoming raw material checks, and storage requirements.  I numbered the programs/SOP's in the master document list and then went onto the next section.  I left some space between numbers in case I missed a requirement.  Once I had my list, I started writing programs, reports, work instructions and training employees along the way.  Because we were a bit behind the 8 ball to start (no one had been trained in anything for at least 3 years) it took me about 3 months to implement the manual and complete the training. I didn't finalize or issue the program or reports until we tested them in the plant.  Once we knew it would work, I then finalized the document.  

 

Hope that helps - good luck! :spoton:


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#3 RobPrendergast

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Posted 25 July 2017 - 07:38 AM

 

Sounds like you'll have a bit of a project on your hands!!  :sleazy:

 

When I started in my current position, I had a similar dilemma.  Do I spend my hours trying to decipher what was done which didn't match anything that was going on in the plant, or just start from scratch.  I decided to start from scratch and I am happy with the results and it was much less frustrating.  I started with the standard we were planning on being audited against, and figured out a numbering system for my programs.  I started with the master document list because I knew many of the programs and procedures that would need to be written based on my experience and the standard.  For example, one of the sections dealt with supplier approval, supplier monitoring, receiving, incoming raw material checks, and storage requirements.  I numbered the programs/SOP's in the master document list and then went onto the next section.  I left some space between numbers in case I missed a requirement.  Once I had my list, I started writing programs, reports, work instructions and training employees along the way.  Because we were a bit behind the 8 ball to start (no one had been trained in anything for at least 3 years) it took me about 3 months to implement the manual and complete the training. I didn't finalize or issue the program or reports until we tested them in the plant.  Once we knew it would work, I then finalized the document.  

 

Hope that helps - good luck! :spoton:

 

 

I think you might be right...

 

I have thought about simply looking at it as it is and just updating it to reflect our current company guidelines/procedures. That doesn't solve the problem that the format, certain contents or layout of the manual itself aren't what i'm used to. I'm a creature of habit.

 

You have given me some good pointers there and enough of a steer to start this project off. I think the daunting thing was "where do i even start?" That being said, i will start with a numbering process as well as the master document. That way, i can almost decide on what i want in there and simply 'tick' off each document as and when it is finished doubling the master document almost as a tick-list as well.

 

Thank you very much for taking the time to write back to me, it's greatly appreciated!

 

Rob


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#4 MWidra

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Posted 26 July 2017 - 03:00 PM

 

Sounds like you'll have a bit of a project on your hands!!  :sleazy:

 

When I started in my current position, I had a similar dilemma.  Do I spend my hours trying to decipher what was done which didn't match anything that was going on in the plant, or just start from scratch.  I decided to start from scratch and I am happy with the results and it was much less frustrating.  I started with the standard we were planning on being audited against, and figured out a numbering system for my programs.  I started with the master document list because I knew many of the programs and procedures that would need to be written based on my experience and the standard.  For example, one of the sections dealt with supplier approval, supplier monitoring, receiving, incoming raw material checks, and storage requirements.  I numbered the programs/SOP's in the master document list and then went onto the next section.  I left some space between numbers in case I missed a requirement.  Once I had my list, I started writing programs, reports, work instructions and training employees along the way.  Because we were a bit behind the 8 ball to start (no one had been trained in anything for at least 3 years) it took me about 3 months to implement the manual and complete the training. I didn't finalize or issue the program or reports until we tested them in the plant.  Once we knew it would work, I then finalized the document.  

 

Hope that helps - good luck! :spoton:

 

^^^What he said. Best way to do it. Have your documents in a controlled environment, and refer to them within your quality manual. The manual does not have to say everything you do, it can just refer to the controlled documents that describe the procedure or process. If you need another type of manual, you have the documents available if they are kept "on the side."

 

Just follow the standard you want to be certified to, and it should just flow.

 

I've now written 4 manuals, and this works well. Auditors like that they can follow along as they audit since the two manual and the standards line up.

 

Just jump in.

 

Martha


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#5 MWidra

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Posted 26 July 2017 - 03:03 PM

^^^What he said. Best way to do it. Have your documents in a controlled environment, and refer to them within your quality manual. The manual does not have to say everything you do, it can just refer to the controlled documents that describe the procedure or process. If you need another type of manual, you have the documents available if they are kept "on the side."

 

Just follow the standard you want to be certified to, and it should just flow.

 

I've now written 4 manuals, and this works well. Auditors like that they can follow along as they audit since the two manual and the standards line up.

 

Just jump in.

 

Martha

Remove the "two", thinking of 2 things at once. :giggle:

 

Martha


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"...everything can be taken from a man but one thing:  the last of the human freedoms--to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way."  Viktor E. Frankl

 

"Life's like a movie, write your own ending."  The Muppets


#6 J0hn

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Posted 06 August 2017 - 05:43 PM

I'm in the same position, I've only around 5 years of Technical experience (6 months into Management) and our QM is in dire need of an overhall. Its currently written to BRC v7 and Tesco Packhouse requirements.

 

The way I have started to format it is in columns,

 

Clause no / Clause / Site Information / Evidence or reference documents.

 

I've laid it out in order of BRC requirements and I am in the process of slotting in the Tesco requirements as we speak. Some are simple as they are basically word for word, but some are very different.

 

BIG job but I was told "you've not earned your Technical Manager badge until you have written a Quality Manual".

 

Wish me luck and i would appreciate any extra pointers :)

 

John


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#7 Charles.C

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Posted 07 August 2017 - 04:06 AM

Hi guys,

 

I am currently looking at overhauling our company Quality Manual, as in its current form, it's a bit of a mess.

 

Does anyone have any pointers or advice on what would be best to read up on to help set a new one up from scratch? I have never done one from inception before and only ever "maintained" one. I am happy to take any and all advice and have quite a good backing from the technical manager in terms of resource expenditure. That being said, i don't want to 'throw money' at it as i am more than happy to read up and implement this off my own back.

 

Over to you guys.

 

 

Thanks

 

Rob

 

Hi Rob,

 

Many people simply take the line of least resistance and "reverse-engineer" the related FS Standard.

 

Creativity is wonderful if you have someone else to text it for you. :smile:


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Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#8 Appendix G

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Posted 07 August 2017 - 07:19 PM

 

I am by no means an expert, but 6 months into my QA career I took my plant from SQF to BRC 7 and rewrote all of the policies. This is from my QSM table of contents:

 

Revised Section 1 Plant Wide

4/7/2015 1.0 Quality and Continuous Improvement Commitment(English)

3/10/2015 1.0.1  Quality and Continuous Improvement Commitment(Spanish)

5/22/2016 1.2 Food Defense Plan

5/22/2016 1.2.1 Food Defense Appendix A

10/14/2015 1.3 Document Control

6/24/2017 1.4 New Developments

6/5/2015 1.5 Supplier Approval

9/6/2015 1.6 Agency Visits

5/5/2017 1.7 Roles and Responsibilities

6/20/2017 1.8 Training    

Section 2 Food Safety

4/14/2015 2.1 HACCP  

9/28/2015 2.2 Plant GMPs(English)

3/20/2015 2.2.1 Plant GMPs(Spanish)

4/16/2015 2.3 Maintenance GMPs

4/16/2015 2.4 Visitor GMPs  

6/16/2015 2.5 Recall/Product Withdrawal

6/8/2015 2.6 Sharps Control

11/11/2015 2.7 Allergen Policy

5/5/2017 2.7.1 Claims: Gluten Free, Non-GMO, RSPO, RWA Policy

6/24/2017 2.8 Metal Detectors & Inline Magnets

4/17/2015 2.9 Laundry  

9/6/2015 2.10 Glass and Brittle Plastics

11/12/2015 2.11 Chemical Approval and Usage

11/18/2015 2.12 Condensation and Uncontrolled Water

6/20/2017 2.13 Corrective Actions

6/20/2017 2.14 Customer Complaints

7/31/2017 2.15 Deviations and Substitutions  

Section 3 Micro Program

7/30/2017 3.0 Environmental Monitoring Program  

Section 4 Hold and Release

5/6/2017 4.0 Hold and Release

 

 

I am sorry the [previous] formatting was trash. I couldn't see until after I posted.


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#9 Charles.C

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Posted 08 August 2017 - 10:02 AM

Hi Appendix G,

 

No problem. Thks for the reformatting. I hv deleted the previous version.


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Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C






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