A quality control and quality assurance plan helps you and your project management team to meet the needs of your customers. Your quality control plan will detail the internal processes you will need to implement to stay on track with meeting quality objectives, while the quality assurance plan outlines all external processes required to make your quality control plan work. The result is a quality management plan that provides a comprehensive approach. Your customers will feel secure in your organisation's commitment to meeting their needs.
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Write down the quality objectives for the project and define them precisely. Every project will require concise quality objectives, easily understood by internal staff and external vendors. Start by looking at your customer base and determine its needs as respects quality. Communicate with your customers and document what is important to them. You can then define the project's quality objectives. A quality objective must be measurable, specific, achievable, timely and realistic. For example, if you have a customer complaining of products shipping late from your warehouse, you will need to find out how long the average shipment takes and compare it to when your customers want the order to arrive. Determine how your can speed shipping time to meet or exceed customer expectations.
Assign all responsibilities and the roles internal staff will play for the quality plan. Do the same for the quality assurance plan by selecting vendors who will carry out specific roles and handle specific responsibilities. When you assign roles and responsibilities, you should also assign ownership of all activities within those roles, whether internal or external. All project members must assume ownership of their roles, successes and failures to assure quality objectives. Create roles and actions plans that clearly define and will assist in meeting your quality objectives.
Review all other business plans to assure continuity with the quality control and quality assurance plans. The last thing your want to do is implement quality policies that run counter to the overall objectives of the organisation. Get input from all other departments to understand what those departments can realistically contribute. Your financial department will help insure you are implementing the most feasible solution from a financial perspective. The objective is to align the quality management plan for your projects with the overall goals of the organisation.
Write out timelines to meet the quality objectives required of the quality management plan. When putting together your timelines, you want to insure that all tasks directly translate to activity that helps meet or exceed your quality objectives. Assign a deadline for all tasks completions. This will require input from both internal staff and your chosen external vendors to ensure the timeline is realistic, but still meets quality objectives in a timely fashion for your customers.
Outline all review processes for the quality assurance aspect of the quality management plan. Articulate when the reviews will occur, who is responsible for the reviews, and what data requires extrapolation to assure progress to reach quality objectives. Quality assurance requires independent reviews; therefore this aspect will require outside vendors. Internal staff may potentially sabotage the quality control plan due to biases. The quality assurance plan does not end with the implementation and success of the project. It will extend beyond the project indefinitely to assure you are consistently meeting your customers' needs.
Tips and warnings
- When the needs of your customers change, revisit your quality management plan, set new objectives and tweak the quality assurance plan to reflect the new objectives.
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