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Thursday, 19 July 2012

Adopting the GCSE-Food & Health Protection SSQA - Safety, Security and Quality Assurance Model

Various concepts for product safety and quality management have evolved over the years. Adopted systems have progressed from periods of complete absence of formal approaches to the adoption of various quality and product safety management models by different companies in different industries. We have: TQM (Total Quality Management); the Six Sigma; the 5-S or 6-S systems (Sorting, Stabilizing or Straightening, Sweeping or Shining, Standardizing, Sustaining the Practice); the SWOT (Strength, Weakness, Opportunity, Threat) analysis and the FMEA (Failure Mode and Effects Analysis) models, Statistical Process Control, Statistical Quality Control, etc. We also have Lean Manufacturing approaches, ISO (International Standards Organization) system, HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point) system, GFSI (Global Food Safety Initiative) Benchmarking system, and many more.

The evolution continues with the Safety, Security and Quality Assurance (SSQA) concept. Why do we need this concept and where does it fit in the scheme of things? Several areas of key differences are listed: GCSE-Food & Health Protection SSQA.

Here are some of the significant differences:
Many of the current approaches force operations to adopt them exclusively and in isolation. In contrast, the SSQA model is an open-minded yet focused approach to product safety and quality management. The adoption of the SSQA concept by an operation means that the operation actively encourages its personnel to search, investigate, recognize, adopt and expand upon winning ideas. Such ideas could come from current and future excellence-producing management approaches. The SSQA model is didactic, eclectic, organic and progressive in producing continuous improvement in any operation. The SSQA concept brings together the theory and reality of product safety and quality assurance. 

There is another salient difference. GCSE-FHP SSQA does not only require continuing, and direct contributions from all parties; it also directly and actively drives the engagement of all parties. Through its Participatory Alliance Principles, the SSQA concept actively engages the entire material supply and utilization chain. It drives continuous improvement processes and loss mitigation  actions with strategies for measuring and expanding successful achievements.

Other Differentiating Key Concepts and Strategies:
The SSQA system involves strategies that ensure resource-efficient and effective implementation of programs, procedures and actions.These strategies can be represented in this short instructive phrase: "Entice team-mates who care about facts". A brief explanation of the specific strategies is  provided as follows:

Entire Chain Engagement – otherwise known as “ENTI-CE”
Through the ENTI-CE strategy, SSQA drives the active engagement of the entire material supply, processing, distribution, product utilization, regulators and assessors chain in the continuous improvement process with measurable success. ENTI-CE is one of the primary strategies in the SSQA concept.

Team Mobilization to Action through Tracking of Exceptional Success “Team-MATES”      
Engaging the entire team with the incorporated Extra Pay Incentive in the tracking of successes (positive internal achievements and positive consumer feedback) and the contributing factors as part of the strategy for maintaining continuous improvement action. 

Continuing Analysis of Realized Effectiveness and Efficiencies“CARE”
CARE involves a review of implemented actions (identified), expended resources (quantified) and realized benefits (quantified) as part of the Continuous Improvement Accounting. The CARE strategy drives a continuing commitment to ensuring resource efficiencies and optimization.

Failure Analysis and Control Tracking System“FACTS”
This SSQA strategy ensures the ongoing failure elimination process through the tracking and prevention of real time quality control incidents, as well as the tracking and prevention of the causes of consumer complaints. Note: Positive feedback from consumers or customers are considered under Team-MATES

DMS-HACCP (HACCP with consideration given to DMS - Difficult to Manage Situations). A DMS-HACCP  program incorporates FACTS that are real to the operation.

Key SSQA Roles
In the SSQA model, there are some key universal roles of Assessor (Auditor), Facilitator and Consultant. The general definitions and differentiation are provided briefly as follows:

The Assessor:
This is not a consultant's role but the assessor serves as a provider of technical evaluation of implemented programs. The Assessor evaluates operations against identified effectiveness standard in order to establish the level of effectiveness achieved. Where effectiveness is deemed to have been achieved, the assessment process is expected to conclude until another scheduled assessment. Where the satisfactory effectiveness is not deemed to have been achieved, the program is noted as having failed that requirement. The Auditor submits a corrective action request and awaits the corrective action response in order to determine if a satisfactory level of effectiveness  has been achieved.

Under the SSQA model, the emphasis is always on the validity and effectiveness of implemented programs. In other words, the Assessor’s conclusions about implemented programs are not based merely on the wordings of a written standard. The persistent frame of reference is the effectiveness of what is evaluated to mitigate real concerns that are associated with the evaluated item.   

The Facilitator:
This is an implementation level consultation role. The Facilitator serves as a technical assessment and solution implementation resource. This is in addition to performing the Assessor’s role. Where systems are found to be effective the process does not conclude. It loops into the continuous improvement cycle. Where systems are found to be ineffective, the operation is noted as having failed in that aspect. The Facilitator conducts the root cause analysis investigation (with the facility's full involvement) and works with the facility to assess different available and effective solution options. The Facilitator assists in the solution implementation & re-assessment through the continuous improvement loop.

This is the expert level consultation role. The consultant serves as the technical solution finding and implementation resource. This is in addition to the Facilitator’s role. The Consultant is expected to recommend best solution options and assist the facility in the implementation of recommended solutions. The Consultant also assists the facility in its continuous improvement initiatives.

SSQA is for food businesses that no longer wish to continue with food safety cat and mouse games:

Write your story - leave a lasting legacyJoin the SSQADevelopment (SSQA-D) Community – "the SQUAD"

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