Achieve a QMS internally, or use a professional business management systems consultant?

Budgeting for consulting services requires a strict value analysis. When I’m discussing AS/NZS 4801, OHSAS 18001 and ISO 9001 consulting with organizations, the typical push-back is: “Why should I bring in someone from outside, when I can avoid the extra cost by utilizing my internal resources or hiring someone in-house?” Let’s unpack that question and explore the answer.

To find the answer for your organization, we need to consider additional questions. Is your organization using the right metrics to measure value? Do you know how to accurately assess potential costs? Are costs your only consideration, or are you deploying other factors to determine value?

Organisations that default to an internal quality management solution are making two potentially large errors. First, they assume a full understanding of the resource allocation and cost required to successfully complete implementation. Second, these organizations condense a full value analysis into a simple cost analysis and ignore other (likely more important) factors.

So… why bring in a business management systems consultant? Let’s take a closer look at one of our support services – QICE Quality Management System Implementation/Maintenance (QMSIM) – to examine both scenarios using a full and accurate value analysis.

Using Internal Resources

To achieve successful implementation of a full Quality Management System (QMS) implementation using internal resources, you must flawlessly achieve ALL of the following:

  • Earn AS/NZS 4801, OHSAS 18001 and ISO 9001 qualifications
  • Conduct a Gap Analysis
  • Create a Project Plan
  • Update employee training
  • Document/update your QMS
  • Implement your QMS
  • Complete an internal audit of your QMS
  • Register and interview auditors

Depending on organization size (these numbers apply to organizations up to 100 employees), the estimated cost to your organization in employee hours is:

  • Implement new QMS: 400-700 hours
  • Update existing “basic” QMS: 300-520 hours
  • Update existing “good” QMS: 150-300 hours

Do those allocations make sense for your organization from a cost analysis standpoint – are you really saving money vs. hiring an outside consultant? Can you afford to redirect internal resources at that scale away from your core business operations? Most importantly, are you confident your organization can accomplish each of those requirements with existing staff and resources?

Consider carefully, as a failure in one requirement squanders those costs and resources, and also sets you back to square one needing a successful QMS implementation.

Hiring In-House

Hiring someone new potentially leaves you with all of the same challenges, as well as an extra salary to pay. Let’s use an average employee cost analysis for an Auckland-area “Quality System Engineer” as the basis for a closer look. Here are some questions to ask your potential new hire:

  1. Are they current with all training and certifications? If not, what are the expenses you’ll need to absorb for up-to-date training?
  2. Do they have full experience with each of AS/NZS 4801, OHSAS 18001 and ISO 9001?
  3. Do they have experience working with an organization your size?
  4. What are annual leave and sick day costs, and who picks up the slack when your new hire is away?

It’s easy to see how costs can quickly accrue to meet or surpass the cost of hiring a professional business management systems consultant. It’s even easier to see how performance capabilities of your new hire might be inadequate to your needs, which again leaves you in the red on costs and back to square one for QMS implementation.

   Professional/Quality System Engineer
Role type Office based Cost
Annual salary 85000
Employee type Employee
Fixed costs Annual 87788
Salary Monthly 7083.333333
ACC Monthly 19.83333333
KiwiSaver rate Percentage 3
KiwiSaver Monthly 212.5
Discretionary Annual 6980
Recruitment Annual 1500
Advertising Upfront 300
Recruitment agency – initial fees Upfront 1000
Time spent interviewing Upfront 200
Setup and training Annual 5000
Desk, chair, workstation Upfront 1000
Computer, hardware, software Upfront 2500
Training – initial Upfront 1500
Employee benefits Annual 480
Workplace food and drink Monthly 40
Total for 1st year   94768
Upfront cost   6500
Monthly cost   7355.666667

New Zealand Business Management Systems Consultant

QICE specializes in quality management consulting for New Zealand manufacturers and product developers, including the full range of support for AS/NZS 4801, OHSAS 18001 and ISO 9001 requirements. Trust QICE for:

• Complete and up-to-date AS/NZS 4801, OHSAS 18001 and ISO 9001 certifications
• Knowledge leadership for Quality Management System support
• Leading experience in the field
• 24/7 availability
• Defined, affordable costs

Contact us to discuss how QICE can add value and help your organization engineer its most efficient path to greatness.

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