Our company is contemplating a new position for a Quality Control person. Who should they report to? How do we make sure they don’t cover up or gloss over quality problems. Some say they should report to the Plant Manager, some say they should report to someone higher in management.
The Quality Control person in most companies is despised and largely ineffective. The reason is that most companies regard Quality Inspection to be a punitive process. In the end, everyone hates the QC person, ignores their directives and in some cases, even sandbags the entire Quality initiative. Why does this happen?
Simply by changing the name, we can change the orientation of the entire process. Substitute Control Systems with Feedback Loops and everything changes. Where do Control Systems go wrong, and where can Feedback Loops be more effective?
Control systems try to catch product or service defects prior the customer experience.
Feedback loops try to measure variances in product or service so corrective action can be taken immediately.
Control systems depend on an inspector who informs a manager who chews out the production line.
Feedback loops provide useful information to the production line so they can take corrective action immediately.
Control systems generally check the quality of the product or service after delivery. Inside the control system is a built-in delay.
Feedback loops check the quality of the product or service during critical phases of production in real time so corrective action can be taken immediately.
So, figure it out. Come up with your own list. Abandon the Quality Control department and startup the Feedback Loop department. I think they should report to the production line. The job is to provide feedback in real time directly to the people who take corrective action immediately. —TF