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As the year winds down, we all have a great opportunity to reflect on our accomplishments over the past year and plan for the year to come.

One accomplishment we are proud of is to have been able to offer dozens of educational opportunities for those in the quality management and compliance fields. In 2020, we hosted dozens of webinars with accrediting bodies and professionals in the field.

We’ve put together a list of our top eight, most popular resources from the past year that we’re sure will give you the tools and inspiration you and your team need for a successful year to come!

1.) Competency and Training: Methods, Actions & Requirements: ISO/IEC 17025 Series

In this webinar, we invited Melanie Ross, a Training Products Specialist with ANAB, to share some insights into the competency and training process. You can view the recording here or read the recap blog here. The webinar reviews the standard requirements for training and personnel competence determination and evaluation, and provides an overview of methods for determining necessary competence. We also address how Qualtrax simplifies the process by automating processes like proficiency tests and documents training records and continuing education credits through workflows, streamlining the audit process and ensuring that every employee has access to his or her own personnel file.

2.) New Requirements Create Compliance Challenges for California Labs

If you work for a water or wastewater testing lab in California, you’ll want to take a look at this blog post. On May 5, 2020 the State Water Resources Control Board adopted new regulations to revamp the Environmental Laboratory Accreditation Program (ELAP). This new regulation will affect the over 650 laboratories they accredit. If this applies to you, your lab is now required to implement a nationally accepted standard called the 2016 NELAC Institute (TNI) Standard. Check out the blog to learn more!

3.) Do I Need a LIMS and a QMS for ISO 17025 Accreditation?

There is a lot of planning that goes into starting a new lab: personnel, equipment, processes and procedures – and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. That planning becomes even more complicated if your organization intends to pursue accreditation to a standard like ISO/IEC 17025. In this blog, we discuss the role of a LIMS and a QMS and we talk about a new offering we’ve created in partnership with our friends at A2LA Workplace Training – the 17025 QMS Quickstart.

4.) How to Take Your Lab from Paper-Based to Paperless

In this webinar, we had the privilege to sit down with Qualtrax Solutions Engineer, Tim Akin, to discuss one of the most common challenges for labs today – how to take a lab from paper-based to paperless. No matter where you are on the journey to paperless, one of the best exercises that Tim proposes is to start tracking all of the quality activities you’re asked to perform and how long they take. So, how often are you being asked for signatures, to track down a record or prepare for an audit? Check out the blog or watch the webinar to learn how you, too, can transition your lab from paper-based to paperless.

5.) What to Expect in Your Initial ISO/IEC 17025 Assessment

We understand that laboratories seeking accreditation for the first time face many challenges regarding how to implement the standard and the expectations of your accreditation body assessor. In this webinar, we spoke with Tracy Szerszen, president and operations manager of Perry Johnson Laboratory Accreditation (PJLA) to help you understand what to expect in that initial audit.

6.) Planning for a Remote Internal Audit

An internal audit is your opportunity to formally check whether a management system is operating in a way that complies with both external and internal requirements. In this webinar, we sat down with Matthew Sica to learn how to design a remote internal audit, an activity that has become even more important and relevant given the global pandemic. This webinar and the accompanying blog will tell you everything you need to know to get started!

7.) Externally Provided Products and Services Requirements: ISO/IEC 17025 Series

If your lab is ISO/IEC 17025 accredited, you need to know the ins and outs of the standard. One area to pay special attention to is nonconformances. In case you didn’t know, the majority of nonconformances are related to section 6.6 of the standard. In fact, 21% of all deficiencies are from section 6.6, specifically 6.6.2. That’s why we sat down with Bibi Abdullah from A2LA. In this webinar, Bibi highlighted the top 5 clauses that receive nonconformances and gave us examples of how laboratories can address and prevent them.

8.) Tackling ISO Audits as a Small Lab

This is another great webinar for both small, environmental labs and any lab facing ISO 17025 or TNI compliance pressure. In this webinar full of great tips and insight, Michelle Robertson, takes us through all of the ways she course corrected and got her water treatment lab back on track. They went from a manual document control system to a complete, automated eQMS, they’ve simplified information retrieval and have it available for anyone in the field, they created workflows, generated reports and gained an efficient, user-friendly system.

Categories: Audits, Calibration, Cannabis Labs, Environmental, Forensic Labs

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