Running a proper quality assurance program in facilities management is important if you don’t want to see your resources go to waste in the long run. There’s a lot that can go wrong even in a smaller organization, and optimizing the processes that drive your QA well in advance is a good idea if you don’t want to find yourself in a messy situation later on when the organization grows.
1. Gather feedback constantly
It’s hard to get a good sense of how things are moving without collecting enough feedback from everyone involved in the QA process. It’s important to ensure that all results of each test are recorded in a database that allows you to easily compare and analyze them later on. Thanks to modern technology, this should normally not be too difficult, unless your QA involves some complicated procedures that can be hard to translate to measurable results. But in that case, this is usually an indication that something is fundamentally wrong with the QA process itself. In the end, the important point of quality assurance is to verify certain parameters of your processes, and when you can’t draw any viable conclusions from the data you’re gathering, you either have a problem with the process itself, or with the way you’re testing it. In any case, some kind of change will likely be in order before you proceed further with your testing.
2. Revise methods regularly
QA is one of the fields most prone to change over time, and it’s important to keep up with current trends if you don’t want your methods to fall behind. This will vary across organizations quite a lot, as the actual methods used in QA in facilities management environments tend to be very different from one company to another, and that also makes it important to share your experience with as many others in your field as possible, in order to ensure that you always have an adequate overview of current trends. Getting in touch with like-minded professionals can go a long way towards ensuring that you have a better understanding of your field as a whole, not just regarding QA but in general. And this, in turn, can help you improve your QA processes significantly.
3. Determine an optimal frequency for checks
It may not be necessary to run your tests as frequently as you might think, depending on the circumstances. Sometimes decreasing the frequency of a certain verification procedure can have a positive impact on the performance of your QA system as a whole, and you might realize that you’ve been wasting lots of resources on a process that’s largely irrelevant in the big picture. On the other hand, running certain types of checks too frequently can have a detrimental effect to the validity of their results too, as some processes have too much variance over short periods of time.
4. Training for new hires
Another important point to consider is that newcomers to the organization need to be brought up to speed as quickly as possible — not just those that are being hired for QA purposes, but members of supporting auxiliary teams as well. There will likely be a lot of cross-work involved between departments if you want to ensure that you’re managing everything with an approach that doesn’t leave anyone out, and this makes it important to ensure that all new hires have a sufficient understanding of the way QA works in your organization.
5. Develop a system for replacing assets
When something fails a test, it’s important to decide what you want to do with that asset. Sometimes a repair is not the most optimal solution, and you’ll need to have a good system in place for replacing anything that breaks down. It’s important to be able to determine the value of an asset, not only with regards to its immediate purchase, but also considering the impact that it will have on your organization while it’s out of service, and after you’ve had to pay for its replacement and subsequent installation. These matters can change the context quite a lot, and sometimes you may realize that your QA process has just identified an obsolete element of your operations.