ISO 9001 clause 7.2 competency - Three questions to ask
15 January 2019
ISO 9001 clause 7.2 requires your organisation to determine the competency requirements for people performing work under its control, take any actions necessary to resolve any competency gaps and evaluate the effectiveness of the actions.
In this article, we share three questions to ask when planning your strategy to tackle this clause, and how you can use Q-Pulse to identify, assess, monitor and address competency gaps.
1) Who are the people performing work under our control?
ISO 9001 clause 7.2 refers to people performing work under its control. This embraces contract, agency people, and all other outsourced providers.
Many organisations lose track of all their different external providers and this poses a great threat to their ability to produce products and services at a consistently high quality.
Q-Pulse, which has been awarded CPD accreditation, enables organisations to keep a central record of anyone performing work under the organisation's control, and associate any risks, NCRs, issues, audits and training documentation. If you want your suppliers to manage their training requirements, the Supplier Portals provide a very simple and easy view of their actions. This controlled view ensures each supplier will only ever see the information relevant to them.
2) How do I retain appropriate documented information to evidence competence?
ISO 9001 clause 7.2 requires organisations to retain documented information to evidence competence. There are two fundamental parts to this: documentation and evidencing competence.
Documentation best practice
With Q-Pulse WorkRite by Ideagen, each stakeholder can be given access to update and manage their set of training records and requirements. Custom forms ensure the relevant information is captured.
In terms of managing any gaps, the competency gap matrix provides a live graphical tool to identify training requirements, expired records, unconfirmed training, valid training and training that is soon to expire.
Each training record can be given a unique quiz to test how well employees have understood the course content. If an employee fails, notifications are sent instantly, and workflows can be initiated to ensure competency gaps are filled.
3) How do I determine competency deficiencies?
ISO 9001 competency requirements defines ‘competence’ as the "ability to apply knowledge and skills to achieve intended results." So, how do you monitor whether intended results have been achieved?
Marguglio’s Seven Human Error Causal Factors
- Knowledge-based—Error based on the absence of knowledge of the requirement, expectation, or need.
- Cognition-based—Error based on the absence of ability to process the knowledge necessary to fulfil the requirement, expectation, or need.
- Value-based—Error based on the absence of willingness to accept the requirement, expectation, or need.
- Reflexive-based—Error based on the absence of ability to immediately respond to a stimulus.
- Error-Inducing Condition-based—Error based on the absence of ability to counteract the error-inducing condition.
- Skill-based—Error based on the absence of manual dexterity.
- Lapse-based—Error based on the absence of attention.
Start with assessing non-conformities
Ideagen’s CAPA software, for example, provides a report with statistics of certain issue types, issue type sources, actions completed, time to complete, and outstanding actions. This data will tell a story of employee competency gaps. From that report, you can then drill down into more detail.
Then, look at customer and supplier feedback
This is a useful tool to collect feedback from your customers, suppliers and employees. From here, you can automate workflows that can be used for reports.
This is key for:
- Capturing risks, opportunities and vulnerabilities
- Identifying training gaps
You could also schedule war room meetings
In a war room meeting, you gather all the vital information in one place and brainstorm with all the people who are working on a particular project. Scheduling a monthly or quarterly war room meeting can be a valuable tool to training, learning and filling any competency gaps.