Production and customer processes at steel fencing systems manufacturer Zaun have been through the mill of audits in recent weeks – by customers, the Security Ratings standards body and an international certification agency. At the end of the various checking procedures the company has passed each test with flying colours.
First, Zaun’s processes have been re-certified to the 2015 edition of ISO 9001 for Quality Management Systems by Bureau Veritas. The 2015 iteration of the standard puts more emphasis than its 2008 predecessor on stakeholder impacts and requires greater awareness of risks by the manufacturer.
Conversely, the scrutiny by the Loss Prevention Certification Board at the Building Research Establishment is entirely on the security performance of products in their actual installed state. Zaun’s SR product range has been re-accredited to SR4 from SR1 ratings.
The acid test surely is when a customer with a requirement for for Critical National Infrastructure protection affords its solutions supplier a ringing endorsement, which is exactly what one of Zaun’s largest and longest-standing CNI clients has just done.
Quality control and Health and Safety manager Dave Sayers, who has driven continuous improvement at Zaun, has a raft of developments to put in place for the new ISO standard, with the emphasis more on people, training and the environment. Sayers stated: “This has to be driven from the top, so senior management have to be on board to ensure we embed a passion for people, training and the environment and continue a focus on quality and excellence throughout the organisation. The first thing any auditor does is to interview a director to ensure there’s senior management buy-in.”
Just last month, Bureau Veritas gave Zaun a ‘flying colours’ re-certification of its ISO 9001 standard with only a couple of observations for improvement. Zaun has undertaken extensive work through its continuous improvement plan to understand its processes and how they interact and impact on each other. It’s now monitoring that all deliveries arrive right first time, which includes them being on time, in the right quantity and of optimum quality. Zaun has also introduced Key Performance Indicators for complaints handling and, so far, is performing favourably.
Sayers believe the continual improvement drive is never “for the sake” of attaining the certification, but is instead wholly driven by customer demand.