This week we caught up with our Quality Assurance guru Lucy…

How the devil are you?

I’m ok.

What’s keeping you busy?

I am working on updating our CHAS accreditation, the latest in a number. I am also working through a business transformation programme to make our Finance operation even more effective by increasing their availability through business process improvement and a bit of tech. I am also ironing out a few wrinkles with our Customer Feedback system to make it a better customer experience and easier when they want to feedback. When I get back from my hols (I go in 2 days) I will be knee-deep in our Quality Audit process

Wow, that sounds a lot. Is it all Quality, Quality, Quality?

I continue to monitor and improve our Quality processes to make sure we are meeting and exceeding the requirements of the ISO standards. We have our annual external audit in October and we are ready !! My approach to Quality is that it should be simple, easy and embedded in our daily operations not a conceptual thing. We should be able to get rid of all our Quality manuals because it is part of our culture and how we go about things and the audit just confirms that. That said, I won’t be getting rid of the manuals just yet.

So, what was life before Formation?

I spent a number of years with one of the UK’s largest Main Contractors working directly with their Quality Director setting up their systems and processes. Often when you join firms it’s already in place, so it was a great opportunity to start with a blank canvas in a large firm. We simplified the Quality automation and made it more interactive so it would guide staff on our Quality process and ensure compliance.

Do you see Customer Feedback as important and is it separate to Quality?

Feedback is vital to Quality. A lot of the ISO standard is based on us measuring how happy our customers are with our service. So it is integral.

Your role changed from pure Quality to Business Assurance earlier this year, why?

Quality is just one pillar in broader Business Assurance – Business Assurance is the process of overseeing how robust Formation is in all aspects of its activity. Business Assurance for us encompasses both business review and continuous improvement.

Tough question, but how do you see the future of Business Assurance and Quality?

I would like to see more meaningful KPIs. It is important that we hold people’s feet to the fire on delivery. If we are coming up short against our agreed KPI, then we can take remedial action, it should be a dynamic process. My job is never ever done, as we grow and the market evolves, there is more to do.

Where you off to now?

I am off to pack for my holiday, you are my last meeting. Bye !!!!!

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