In order to answer this question, we must first define the term ‘quality’. In everyday life, the word is often used in an evaluative way – something is either good or bad. Originating from the Latin qualitas, quality in neutral terms means the nature and thus the ‘totality of features and inherent or assigned characteristics of a product, process or procedure’. The quality management representative of a company is tasked with at least maintaining the quality of products and services and improving them in the long term. Essential tools for this include cross-departmental and cross-site processes and guidelines that are constantly being developed and optimised according to customer, market and technology requirements. With its GDPR-compliant, ISO-certified quality management (or QM) system, EVS Translations ensures smooth internal processes and punctual delivery of high-quality specialist translations and localisation services for B2B customers in a wide range of specialist areas.
The quality manager is responsible for the implementation and development of this quality management system (QMS). Together with the Management, he or she develops the necessary processes in accordance with the PDCA cycle (Plan-Do-Check-Act). Tools and performance indicators are developed to bring clarity and orientation into the organisational structure and to optimise it. In consultation with the departments, the quality manager ensures that all processes are updated and coordinated. The focus here is also on communicating the policy and objectives of quality management to employees at all levels. After all, informed, engaged employees will develop an understanding of potential for improvement, which in turn can have a positive effect on customer benefit.
Certified quality management and translation processes in accordance with ISO 9001 & ISO 17100
EVS Translations was successfully certified for the first time in 2012 – in accordance with DIN ISO 9001 and DIN EN 15038, the predecessors of ISO 17100, at the time. The first standard certifies the application of a quality management system for optimising the internal organisation, while the second contains provisions specifically for translation service providers. For example, it regulates what training, experience and skills all persons involved in the translation process must have. The requirements of the ISO standards are by no means exhaustive – they can always be exceeded! Since its foundation in 1991, EVS Translations has worked exclusively in accordance with the native speaker principle. This means that the language into which the translation is made is always the translator’s mother tongue. This gives our clients a further advantage and the certainty that their documents will be translated with cultural characteristics taken into account.
The instruments of a quality management representative
The Management Review is prepared on a yearly basis. It is based on the data gathered from customer feedback, results from the complaint management report, supplier evaluations and internal and external audits. It also acts as an opportunity to set corporate goals, analyse the extent to which they have been achieved and identify risks for the company.
Translation service providers can register or be certified in accordance with the ISO 17100 standard. In contrast to mere registration, certification involves an on-site audit at the translation company’s premises and thorough testing of its processes. Registration, on the other hand, is a commitment of the service provider to work in accordance with the relevant standards.
The quality manager prepares the audits for certification and follows up on them, in consultation with the domestic and foreign offices. During the audits, he or she supports the auditor and the respective process representative of the department. The annual audit by an independent, external auditor lends credibility to quality management and supports the growing esteem in which employees are held. After all, the QM system requires the involvement of all employees so that it may be developed further, brought to life and have significance.
The task of the quality management representative involves a lot of responsibility. Reliability, neutrality and an instinct for dealing with people are three qualities that an employee appointed to the position of quality management representative should possess (you cannot apply for this position).
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Your EVS Translations HR team