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New to Quality Assurance and BRC - need some help!


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#1 tisher

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 11:25 PM

Hi everyone,

I am new to BRC. I am replacing a QA Manager of a number of years. We did quite well on our last audit and my goal is to do the same on the next audit. I was not involved in the rewriting for the last audit. My question is where do I start for issue 6? Does anyone have a specific way they go through issue 6 to make sure everything is covered? Any templates that anyone would like to share or risk assessment templates etc,,??? Thanks in advance!



#2 Simon

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Posted 13 February 2012 - 07:18 PM

Tisher, this may seem like a lame answer, but I'll give it to you all the same. Print or make a copy of your BRC version 6 standard and work your way through it from the beginning line by line. Whilst doing so cross reference where in your system you meet each of the requirements. This will help you understand the requirements and your system and may identify some gaps or weak areas. And finally as you go through ask here anything that you do not understand. It will take you a week solid to do this, but believe me it will be well worth it.

Regards,
Simon


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#3 shakir

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 03:50 AM

Simon
You reflected the way I prepared for BRC V6. When I hold new version on my hand I was not having any idea how to start. I gone through each clauses, highlighted actions like ENSURE, ESTABLISH, VALIDATE, TRAIN, DOCUMENTED PROCEDURES, RECORD, RECORDS, etc. which shown me the way how to act.

Always don't look for templates, put your energy and bring the best outcome. It gives best results. Templates are valuable when we understand the implementation.

Regards
Shakir



#4 GMO

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 04:01 PM

Simon's answer is describing a gap analysis. It's spot on and exactly what I did. I took the standard, put it into a document and looked for evidence of conformity (referencing where we do it) and looked at where we didn't conform. Just because you passed issue 5, don't just concentrate on what's changed for issue 6. Certainly my (previously compliant) site, weren't actually compliant on several items from issue 5!

Don't be scared by the list this creates, mine was approx 120 actions.

The next thing I did was set up the internal auditing schedule as you need to have audited against the whole standard before the audit. This is also effectively a more in depth gap analysis anyway so anything you miss in your initial run through should get mopped up here. Just bear in mind though that the auditing workload is large so you will need help and need to get started on the plan asap.

When is your audit due? That might help us guide you on how to prioritise. If it's only 2 weeks away, I'd say sod all of the above, focus on the key changes and cross your fingers but if it's 6 months then it's a bit of work but you should be fine.



#5 mesophile

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 09:00 PM

Hi everyone,

I am new to BRC. I am replacing a QA Manager of a number of years. We did quite well on our last audit and my goal is to do the same on the next audit. I was not involved in the rewriting for the last audit. My question is where do I start for issue 6? Does anyone have a specific way they go through issue 6 to make sure everything is covered? Any templates that anyone would like to share or risk assessment templates etc,,??? Thanks in advance!



Good Afternoon,

Can you answer the following questions please:

1. What kind of products do you manufacture?
2. Does it have a high risk, high care and/or low risk operation?
2. When you say "quite well" do you mean an A grade, a B grade or a C grade? version 6 is quite a bit harder and there are a few sections that have caught people out since version 5.
3. This version of the BRC is 50% factory and 50% paperwork based, an average audit takes 2 days, therefore 1 full day will be in the factory and will NOT require you. Instead your production staff/supervisors/managers will be put through their paces, including being interviewed, asked questions and watched carefully to ensure the procedures you have in your quality manual are followed fully.
4. Do you have anyone as the leader of your HACCP team who has HACCP qualifications? This is a requirement.

Answering these questions will allow us to direct how to help you.

As Simon said, print off a copy of the BRC v6 and work your way through from start to finish. By the time your BRC hits you, make sure you can answer every question fully and have the paperwork to back these up.

You need to be confident with all of your paperwork, documents and procedures.


Many thanks,

Simon

#6 Charles.C

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 08:48 AM

Dear All,

Based on experiences, I am rather more cautious than some of the previous suggestions, eg perhaps with respect to prioritising some of the "Gap" aspects.

I like mesophiles's response but i would add somewhere near the beginning of his list an additional query(s) as to the OPs technical background, eg - Do you well understand the opening HACCP content requirements in the standard / yr BRC approved existing operational HACCP manual? If the answer to either is NO, then perhaps already time to press the Panic Button. :smile:

Rgds / Charles.C


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#7 mccainqac

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 03:03 PM

I'm a Quality Audit Coordinator for a frozen potato processing facility and my workload since January 1 has been to build an Internal Audit Team, build a Quaity Manual, and prepare for the BRC Audit. Looking at all of that is overwhelming when you consider the size of our facility - over 1,000,000 pounds finished product in 12 hours on a good day, 800-900,000 average.

The question is: How do you eat an elephant? Answer: One bite at a time! I started with Section 7 - Personnel since it is small and I thought I wouldn't feel overwhelmed here and I could find my grove working through it. I created a spreadsheet in Excel and listed each numbered clause and then hyperlinked whatever documents I needed to support it or made a brief note if it was observational, etc. Each section of the BRC audit is represented by a single sheet in the Excel program for quick viewing, etc.

Now whether it is being used during the Internal Audit Team's auditing or by the actual BRC auditor, the Quality Manual will have a list of procedures, forms, notes, etc. so I don't have to rely on my aging brain to remember everything. If there was a gap discovered, I made a note and shaded the area in orange so now I can go back and know where I have to do some more work. This entire system will be tested in a few weeks when we start the official Internal Audit Team up.

Remember, to take each section line-by-line and focus on that area until you feel you are complete. Looking at it all at once can be unnerving! :wacko:


Good Luck!



#8 sweetthang0286

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 09:21 PM

This is very helpful to me. Where do we print off a copy of the BRC V6 or is there an excel spreadsheet with the information already in it? Is it the Global Standards Self-Assessment Tool or is there something else? Thanks for your help.



#9 shea quay

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 11:31 PM

You'll need to buy a copy of the BRC standard anyway - it's a clause in the standard @ 1.1.7. The assessment tool will get you so far (http://www.brcglobal...037 8.11.11.pdf) though. Very hard to download a pirate copy of version 6 so far. Obviously this is a good thing, as internet piracy is a crime.....



#10 Charles.C

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Posted 17 April 2012 - 04:59 AM

Dear sweetthang,

Actually, in addition to previous post, there is (or was when i last looked) an extended version (including a complete list of the itemised requirements for food BRC6 [latter may be same as previous post, didn't check]) also on the BRC website. Links to this document and other helpful guidelines on this forum can be found by searching here for "BRC6" or "BRC Food6" or similar. Or scanning the sub-forum.

Rgds / Charles.C


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C





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