Before: Paper based

PDF

When I joined, they had the quality manual in electronic form: PDF files. It was more suitable to handle. Furthermore they did not distribute the manual to every employee at every change: the latest version was only available on the intranet, and it was forbidden to create hardcopies.

Worked, but still, there were problems. Every process was in separate PDF file and the links between them was not successfully maintained. The consistency has gone as changes were made. To avoid of frequent changes the processes were designed on too high level, only providing requirements to the daily work, not best practices or a real workflow with advices. Therefore staff did not feel that is helpful enough; they were not able to overview that. They were not allowed to copy and store the documents, so they needed to download them every time. This would have been fine, if the server had not been 2000 km away, behind an internet access with extreme narrow bandwidth…

This was an acceptable way to handle these documents, until the company was taken over by another one. The acquisition required the complete revision of the quality system, and that required a lot of changes. These changes made PDF files confused, full of interfering processes, undefined roles and inconsistent terminology. A change was necessary.

Will be continued…

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