The database’s communication feature provides a regular reminder about quality to both the quality control and plant staff. Automated e-mails sent to the team’s computers or mobile telephones replace the huge stacks of paperwork generated on daily test data that were given to plant managers at the end of the day. Instead of having a report filed in a binder never to see the light of day, the e-mail reports provide regular, active communication on quality issues.
Learning from each other
Once a quarter, each site holds a quarry/quality production team meeting where all parties sit down as a group, review the data from the previous quarter, discuss any products that may be of a potential concern, and ensure that production is on track from a sales/demand standpoint. “It’s also an opportunity to review issues from other operations, explain how they were resolved, and be more proactive,” Guardino notes. If a plant has a problem, it is an isolated one because the quarterly meetings allow all sites to learn from the challenge and prevent it.
The team environment is a welcome change, Guardino says. “In the past, you used to have production on one side and quality control on the other. We’ve really gone completely away from that and are on the same side,” she adds. “Having a good working relationship with communication and a team environment is what, for us, was the key to our success. We realized that we’re all on the same team and we have the same goal: sending out a product that makes the customer happy the first time and every time.” AM
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