Do you ignore Quality Control?
Every now and again, we receive emails along the lines of:
"When should I start to Quality Control my gas operatives?"
"What's the point of Quality Control, it's just a money pit?"
"I'm tendering for work and they've asked for information on our Quality Control system?"
"The company is having a Gas Safe inspection and they've asked to see the QC Forms and current trends!"
so, we've decided to give it a mention this month.
Why Quality Control?
Speaking from a personal perspective, if you have access to Quality Control Forms, visit your employees and want to measure the standard of their knowledge and technical ability then a well scripted form should supply this information to you.
The words "Quality Control" seem to instil inadequacy fears into operatives and overheads worries into business owners.
The reality is that if you have a good relationship with your employees and explain that this is a useful tool to help highlight knowledge shortfalls, then they will be better engaged to fill those gaps to ensuring they are better equipped to carry out their job when inspected by Gas Safe (as long as we help fill those knowledge gaps).
It's common sense to always operate a Quality Control procedure as it pre-empts potential business issues (and risks) and is considered a pre-requisite as a competent business grows.
If your company has an incident, how would you explain the following:
- How are employees checked by the your company as regards competence and compliance to current requirements?
- How many times are your operatives checked on each area of work annually?
- What are the top 3 areas of non compliance you are working on and what were the three before that?
- How are your operatives updated with new technical information (e.g. Gas Safe bulletins) and do your QC Forms reflect any changes posing risk.
- Do you have evidence of coaching in the field?
- How have you reduced recalls to jobs by using your quality control data?
So, although this is a brief look, you've got to ask why not Quality Control. My experience is that you can drive a great business forward through this data which you can collect whether the operative is on the premise or not.
It's a greater cost to sail blind and run a business on 'Gut based' information rather than fact based knowledge.
Over 150 companies have downloaded our free Quality Control Procedure template which will give you a good idea of a basic package which you are free to tailor to suit your requirements.
As you grow your business, the process is scalable so if you start it when you are small you can take it on your journey without reintroduction of new systems.
Feel free to download a starter template.
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