I'm nearly 2 years into my QA career. It's a small company and a lot of room for Q improvements. I can only learn so much from books and YouTube video. My supervisor mentioned professional organizations may sometimes offer facility tours; he did a few as a member of ASME. Has there ever been any facility or QC lab tours offered by ASQ members?
I understand there may be proprietary knowledge at risk but I know I would certainly learn a lot from touring a large member facility and seeing the ISO or AS programs in action. I'd also be interested in seeing digitization and co-bot implements.
Local ASQ sections in past years did attempt to schedule a company tour each year as part of their regular program. I do not know whether that practice is still encouraged. If you are active in your local section, you might suggest it to your section program chair.
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I encourage you to attend ASQ Meetings to enhance your knowledge. My experience at ASQ meetings and conferences has been that the presenters are experts and provide tools and information for me to apply and use in my organization. I have learned tremendously from people like Phil Crosby, Grace Duffy, Duke Okes, Joe DiSimone, and others when attending ASQ meetings and conferences. And meeting other Quality people can provide a network of resources for exchanging knowledge and experiences.
ASQ Section Leadership usually arranges tours (this was pre-COVID) of the businesses that the section members work at or through friend-of-a-friend networking. I have attended many company tours and learned much.
Learning is a wonderful thing. No one can ever take from you what you have learned. Learning about quality can improve your personal life and the company to which you contribute. I wish you success.
If you want to see how other companies are doing some of the items mentioned is is possible to arrange visits to your suppliers (say as part of an audit) or a customer (say as part of a sales call). I have been able to do both of these items and learned a lot. Visiting a customer is a great opportunity to see how your product is handled, managed, and processed. This experience accomplishes two critical items: having contacts with your customer and starting to learn how they think. Both of these are well worth the time and expense of the visit.
We offer tours - we are appx 110k sq ft facility with appx 160 employees, both ISO9001 and ISO14001 certified, located in upsate NY - where are you?
Facility tours are refreshing and widen your perspective, but often not relevant to your needs. I stay most curious about the needs in my own organization, but look to publications like Quality Progress and my Section meetings to expand my awareness of other organizations and industries, and how they implement trends in quality practices.
Being a host of external visitor and as a visitor to a external facility provides rewarding experience and growth both academically and professionally. Im still optimistic that, with the lesson learnt from this pandemic, there will be organisations who are still willing to open their doors for students and professionals to gain insight of their quality activities and best industry practices.
Steven, where are you located?
Hello Valued Contributors,
My 2 cents on the ASQ Member facility tours.
The idiom “ walk the talk” for the benchmarking of Quality practices is realized by these tours.
It prevents the reinvention of the wheel and we get fresh ideas.
Normally the facility tours are conducted in the afternoon shifts followed by Q&A sessions at the company premises.
These visits create a great networking opportunity within ASQ membership and also the host company.
At Section 402(Toronto) we have been having at least one plant tour to companies such as Ford, Toyota in the pre-Covid era.
QMS Lead Auditor-independent contractor
Partial Load Professor-Sheridan College
ASQ Education Chair-Section 0402
QA Manager, Innovative Solutions Unlimited
Current Chair of ASQ Section 815
Could there be a virtual aspect to the tours for 2 reasons
1 COVID 19
2 To include members that are located elsewhere.