The company states that “ASR is committed to QUALITY and makes every effort to ensure that its products meet the highest international standards for safety and quality.” As an ISO 9000 registered company, ASR is required to document its manufacturing processes. As a conscientious supplier, American Safety Razor works with its customers to maintain historical product quality documentation.
When a customer increased its document retention requirements from five to ten years, ASR Quality Engineer/Management Representative Melissa Bailey knew it was time to go digital.
In order to maintain such a volume of paper records, “We (ASR) would have needed an entirely new storage facility!” she said.
ASR’s Knoxville, TN manufacturing facility decided to contact Qualtrax, Inc. After comparing Qualtrax Compliance Software to three or four other solutions, ASR selected Qualtrax to handle its document control and employee training needs.
“Qualtrax has an excellent system for reviewing and approving documents; that was essential to ASR. We also liked the ‘expire for review’ setting – a function we did not find in the other packages,” said Ms. Bailey. She described the employee testing and training records management feature as another Qualtrax advantage.
Controlling the Paper
In addition to the basic Qualtrax Compliance Software product, ASR purchased the Imaging Module to enable seamless scanning and storage of its paper documents. ASR inspectors collect samples of the .004” thick blades it produces and tapes them to inspection documents. Notes are recorded and the entire sheet is scanned directly into the Qualtrax database for approvals and storage. Before Qualtrax, employees had to follow manual approval and storage procedures.
Employee Testing and Training Records Management
Using the testing feature within Qualtrax, ASR has been able to improve the timeliness and visibility of employee training. In the past, workers were required to go to a particular part of the plant to receive and acknowledge training on each procedural update. Now, each employee receives an email alert from Qualtrax that allows direct access to the documented process. Depending on the settings put in place by management, employees either take a test on the new process or apply an electronic signature to confirm understanding.
According to Ms. Bailey, Qualtrax has made workers much more receptive to training because it is no longer a hassle. Maintaining the records in Qualtrax is also easier and more stable than in the aging database ASR had created years earlier.
Qualtrax Influences the Entire Company
The Knoxville division of Personna American Safety Razor is already experiencing a change in the way it does business. With 35 to 40 employees currently using Qualtrax, the newfound access to documents enables workers across the plant to reference information previously unavailable. Audits require less time than ever as Melissa Bailey can simply direct customers and auditors to the view-only instance of Qualtrax accessible without a login. ASR has begun working with a new facility in Mexico to implement Qualtrax from the start of its operations.
“Now when we have a process meeting, people ask, ‘Can we do that in Qualtrax?’ We are excited to get started with workflows very soon,” said Ms. Bailey. “We have a vision for the software and a belief in it. We know it will continue to make our work easier.”