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Increasing speed of mock trace exercises


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#1 Steiny_A

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Posted 02 December 2019 - 09:02 PM

Long story short; we've got room to grow on our mock trace abilities.

 

We performed well on our mock trace for SQF, but were 15 minutes too long. Right now almost everything is paper. We have a project for a new traceability system, but that will not in place until late next year or later. I'm not really sure what else to implement for correctives and preventatives in the meantime. I feel limited to adding members to our recall plan, and increasing frequencies of trace exercises. Are those sufficient CAs and PAs though? Would a breakdown of each individuals role during exercise be a better way to go?

 

Does anyone have any suggestions for increasing speed and accuracy during a trace? Thanks!



#2 SQFconsultant

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Posted 02 December 2019 - 10:56 PM

Would a breakdown of each individuals role during exercise be a better way to go?....

 

Each person on the team needs to have a specific role.

 

Also, wondering - what do you mean that you were 15 minutes too long - based on what?


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#3 Steiny_A

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Posted 02 December 2019 - 11:52 PM

I was leaning towards a breakdown of each individuals role, it's seemed fairly chaotic every time we do a trace. Our time limit was 2 hours and we finished in 2 hrs 15 min.



#4 SQFconsultant

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Posted 03 December 2019 - 01:28 AM

I take it this is your own set goal of 2 hours?

 

Since there is nothing authored by SQF that sets that time limit.

 

Frankly 2 hours seems rather intense for an exercise like this.


Warm regards,
 
 
Glenn Oster
 
 
Glenn Oster Consulting / 800-793-7092 / Serving the Earth
SQF, IFS & BRC System Development, Implementation & Certification Consultant

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www.GlennOsterConsulting.com

 

NEW - GOC BLOG - www.GGGGG.monster

 


#5 Hoosiersmoker

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 02:24 PM

Are you talking mock recall or just traceability exercise? Obviously, being a food packaging manufacturer our Mock Recall is not nearly as involved as some, but usually takes less than 20 minutes to complete. our traceability test (performed during our annual audit) took less than 5. However, time isn't the issue it's accuracy. You want to get it right so the recall / trace is complete and covers all necessary aspects. If you imposed the time limit, replace it with "As quickly and effectively as possible". Use the results for your CA and improvements and do better each test. Definitely split responsibility among several people: If oyu have 5 people take an hour each your test lasts one elapsed hour even though it technically took 5 total hours to complete.



#6 Steiny_A

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 05:21 PM

Our time limit is two hours both internally and with the Costco addendum. We ended up adding an extra member and having all members required available for trace exercises. It really is something everyone has to practice.

 

I miss having electronic lot traceability.


Edited by Steiny_A, 05 December 2019 - 05:21 PM.


#7 skern

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 07:27 PM

I have done the Costco addendum in the past with the 2 hour requirement.  It can be tough even with an electronic system.  I definitely prefer a software to help with the exercise but there will always be things on paper.  I try to have as many things as possible scanned electronically, but you have to organize the files well so you can find them quickly and don't have to open everything to see what it is. 

 

I also like to keep papers organized in binders instead of file folders.  File folders can be more cumbersome to sort through.  I feel like a binder is easier to grab and flip through.  I prefer to keep 1 binder per topic instead of trying to group too many things together.  That way others can help grab papers because they just look for that binder and find the right date/lot.  

 

When you only have 2 hours, it is especially important that everyone involved in the mock recall knows exactly what to do.  There is no time to explain step by step what to do during the exercise.  I have a checklist that lists off what documents are needed any who is responsible.  That way, during the exercise, I can just fill in the items and lots and send it to everyone involved while I work on pulling other things. 

 

Hope this helps!


Edited by skern, 05 December 2019 - 07:28 PM.


#8 FurFarmandFork

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 08:30 PM

Ditto to Skern. If you can't accomplish 2 hours with your current resources, you either need to add more resources (people or software), or use the trace exercise to look for ways to make your paperwork easier to collect/read and therefore faster to feed into your trace flow. Don't just evaluate if your trace was accurate, but use it as a lean event to determine where there's wasted time.


Austin Bouck
Owner/Consultant at Fur, Farm, and Fork.
Consulting for companies needing effective, lean food safety systems and solutions.

Subscribe to the blog at furfarmandfork.com for food safety research, insights, and analysis.




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