By: Caroline Thomas
If I had to tell you one thing I have learned in the past year working at Partners In Association Management, it is the importance of quality control systems in our workplace. My position within the Membership Services team, is serving as quality control for our credit card charges, continuing education for multiple clients and membership status. Additionally, our team handles payment processing, time sensitive data entry and special projects every day. When you add in the high call volume we experience, there is a lot going on at once. Patience, attention to details, and quality of work are crucial. It may sound a little boring, but read on. I use the following tips that could help you too!
- Three Times a charm. One way to achieve quality work is to use a system of “3s”. On our team, one person types the credit card transactions for that day, another team member checks over them, and a third person actually runs them. This allows for three sets of eyes to look over the information before it becomes a done deal. After all, Pythagoras did feel that “3” was the first real number.
- Use the Technology Available to You (and go above and beyond too). You could say that Microsoft Access is somewhat of our lifeline at Partners. I had not worked with it prior to my current job, but I have been amazed at the things it can do. I can use Access to run a query, which presents information in a concise and editable way. Queries allow me to catch errors before the final report is run. A query may sound a little daunting to you, but it is a very useful tool! If Access is new to you, I encourage you to check out this website for online Access training: http://www.gcflearnfree.org/office2013/access2013. It helped me navigate the ins and outs of the database!
- Know When to Step Away. Imagine that you have been entering data for hours and checking your totals along the way. The time finally arrives for you to print your receipt log. Low and behold, your numbers are not balancing. It has happened to me many times (and it can be incredibly frustrating)! I typically dive in right away to try to figure out what the error. Occasionally, it’s a simple solution, but more often than not, I have to be convinced to step away and come back to what I am doing at a later time. Fresh eyes are usually the best eyes (and that’s hard to remember sometimes)!
I think we can all agree that quality control systems are vital in the workplace. I can’t guarantee you will always produce flawless work by following these tips, but it’s a start! Aristotle claimed “quality is not an act, it is a habit” and I live by this. What do you do to implement quality control in your workplace?