The existence of nonconformance can only mean that something has gone wrong and that a particular set of specifications wasn’t followed. It means that the company’s standard operating procedures (SOP) were not followed, and in a broader term, it means that the requirements set out by ISO 9000 were not met.
When this occurs, it naturally has to be handled. Thankfully, it’s no longer required to document the whole procedure of finding, reporting, and fixing nonconformance issues, so this entire ordeal is a bit easier. But keeping a record of nonconformity and how it was corrected is still necessary.
The things that have to be done to correct the problems can only be done after the problems have occurred. It’s far easier to have measures that will prevent nonconformance issues from appearing altogether.
The easiest way to reduce nonconformance is employee training. Let us explain how to proceed.
It’s good to identify the cause first, to find a solution. Whatever the business in question might be, reasons for nonconformity issues can usually be boiled down to the same things:
- Poor or lack of documentation
- Poor communication or miscommunication
- Poor personnel training
- Poor personnel motivation
- Dysfunctional operating environment
- Poor quality or lack of materials
- Poor quality or lack of tools and equipment
As you can see when taking a better look at the causes, most of them can be, in one way or another, attributed to employee training. Some of them individually are lousy employee training while some others are indirectly or directly connected.
Naturally, it doesn’t mean that you can eliminate nonconformance through employee training, but it indeed is the best way to avoid it in most cases.
How to Achieve the Desired Effects
Proper employee training is vital for several reasons, not only for reducing nonconformance. To achieve quality training, you need to nurture and maintain the knowledge base of your employees and suppliers.
In essence, you need to get all personnel up to speed with several issues: from policies, regulations, SOPs, and many other relevant quality metrics. The baseline is for the achievement of quality, and violations need to stop happening.
It, in turn, can almost eliminate the possibility of nonconformity.
However, achieving quality training is not an easy feat. Plenty of periodic training sessions must be conducted, tests as well, and even awareness programs for all of your personnel, including suppliers. This way you can ensure that everyone in your organization and those connected to it, are on the same page and have the same goal.
The training can also improve motivation of employees through unity. It will enhance communication as well and creates a better operating environment. Also, even documentation can be improved. As we have already said, these are some of the most common causes of nonconformity. They practically eliminate with the improvement of employee training, which will reduce dissent.
Dealing with nonconformity and other quality issues is best achieved through a Quality Management System. Intellect offers an out-of-the-box solution through its eQMS platform that already incorporates workflow in several modules like CAPA, Doc Control, and more.
Written by Romeo Elias
Romeo Elias is the President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Intellect, an award winning leader in the SaaS enterprise software industry with a focus on enterprise Quality Management Software and Business Process Management (BPM). Romeo is a visionary executive, thought leader and advocate for business friendly software that requires No Programming and empowers everyone to innovate. Romeo has overseen Intellect's growth from its founding in 2000 to a high growth software company with hundreds of happy customers. Romeo is a patented inventor, entrepreneur advisor, and board member of Intellect. Prior to Intellect, Romeo worked in the consumer electronics space, overseeing the engineering design and development of handheld electronics, and previously was the founder of a web development firm. He received his BS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California, San Diego and MS in Manufacturing Engineering from UCLA.