Embracing Change for Growth and Improvement

Embracing Change for Growth and Improvement

Hello Food-Biters!

Is this year whizzing by or what?

We would absolutely fail in our duty if we did not tell you that we have a bumper-filled May ahead of us.  Our public workshops are up and running in Paarl and Johannesburg and we still offer you the option to Zoom in if you are located remotely or just prefer the safety of your own environment.  Click here to see our training programme and details of all the workshops we are offering over the next few weeks.

This week we will conclude our change management discussion and look at planning, risk assessing and updating.

The ISO 22000:2018 stipulates that changes should be communicated and carried out in a planned manner.  For us to plan the process of changing, we need to have a clear process in place – in the world of management systems we tend to call this a procedure.  A procedure will dictate how changes are initiated, risk assessed, approved, implemented, validated and finally, how the system is updated after the changes have taken effect.

An important aspect of planning is the allocation of resources.  At an early stage of the change management process, we need to be aware of what resources we will need and whether the availability of these resources will impact the feasibility of the change itself.

With a clear process which is understood by all the stakeholders, we can now start to look at the impact of the proposed change and assess how this change would affect the integrity of our food safety management system as well as our ability to manufacture safe food.  The secret to the risk assessment process is to make sure that the correct people provide input in terms of assessing the risks.  Our multi-disciplinary food safety team members together with the team leader are the perfect people to fulfill this role.  They already understand the concept of risk in the context of the food safety management system.

The outcome of our risk assessment will be the green light (or red light) to proceed (or not) with implementation of the changes.  Depending on the nature of the change, the implementation stage could include factory trials, testing of new equipment, training of key staff who are affected by the change, etc.

The final step in the change management process is the one often forgotten.  We are so chuffed with ourselves after implementing a change that we soon forget to review the documentation associated with the change and update our FSMS accordingly. This leads to outdated HACCP studies that do not necessarily reflect your hard work in terms of managing the risks associated with the changes.  Very often procedures and production records are not updated to reflect these changes either.

Embrace change – it helps us grow, improve and above all, keeps us remarkably busy indeed!

Until next week…

Food Bites Team