Is Complexity Killing Compliance?
A global panel of experts have been discussing how digital technologies can help solve some of the industries biggest issues.
As part of the current Exemplar Global Food Safety Expo, a series of panel debates have been held with industry leaders in digital compliance transformation.
One of their biggest areas of concern was the growing number of ever changing schemes required by retailers, brand owners and regulators.
This leads to cost and complexity that can't be absorbed by consumers or certification systems without more advanced digital solutions.
Food producers are increasingly having to spend time with different auditors for different schemes, for different countries' retailers, and brand owners. Many of the questions being asked are the same and are repeated.
Panellist, Colin Christmas, co-convener of the IAF Working Group (International Accreditation Forum) focused on the GFSI 'race to the top'. “Non-standardised approaches have a detrimental effect” [to] “food safety, security and supply, in International trade’
Anthony Auffray, the recently retired Head of Global Quality and Compliance at Amazon Foods agreed.
“It also makes life very difficult for Certification Bodies“ added Marco Roffia co-chair of GLOBALG.A.P.’s Certification Body Committee. “Each scheme owner - such as GLOBALG.A.P. - is building their own system and asking each compliance body to integrate with them. That becomes impossible for CBs, who typically are asked to audit over 50 schemes. What is needed is one system that can handle all of the scheme owners’ requirements and reduces complexity and duplication.”
Graeme Munroe, audit leader of an 800 avocado producer co-operative, highlighted that they were solving this problem by using the QuantumLeap online platform, specifically designed to solve this problem. “We have significantly reduced the complexity of multi-scheme auditing, and reduced time and cost. And, a fantastic added value is that we are able to aggregate the data across all the schemes, and use it as management information for continuous improvement.”
Phil Cryer the CEO of Telarc, a compliance body that audits more than 50% of the ISO certifications in New Zealand, uses the same platform across ISO 9001, IS0 9014 and ISO9045. “There is about a 40% duplication in those schemes. An integrated system saves us a lot.”
Keith Phillips, CEO of QLBS - the QuantumLeap platform provider for auditors and assessors - pointed out that the integrated multi-scheme capability had been a design priority for the QuantumLeap team from the beginning - some 20 years.
To review the debates and join the discussion register here.
Read more about these debates in the The Auditor Online
If you want to know about QuantumLeap, email Keith.Phillips@qlbs.com.