Re: ISO Document Control for Outside Authored Manuals

Subject: Re: ISO Document Control for Outside Authored Manuals
From: Scott Turner <sturner -at- airmail -dot- net>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 27 Mar 2001 08:53:12 -0600

It?s the externally authored documents that present the problem.
Many of our shop manuals come from the equipment manufacturers. With
these, it appears that the latest-is-the-greatest ISO system may
actually thwart the intention of the quality mandate.

Aren't these other manufacturers in a process like ISO, does your
company have any leverage with them?

Here?s the rub. Technicians usually work with a ?bench copy? of
the official text. These manuals are liberally sprinkled with
handwritten notes, written by and for the tech. Some might argue these
unofficial notes don?t belong, but anyone who?s worked on the equipment
knows better. A good cook will mark up a cookbook, and from these notes
the diners can only benefit.
And yet, according to the ISO quality system, as I read it, these
time worn shop manuals are to be demoted to a ?for reference only?
status whenever a new manual is issued. Rendered ?obsolete.? Hidden out
of sight and scratched from the list. This is where the document control
system would appear to be breaking down.
In a sentence, how does one reconcile the ISO requirements for
listing only officially updated documents against the technician?s
real-world updates? Are there any ISO folks out there who?ve faced and
solved this apparent paradox?

If you have control of the content of these docuements, incorporate
the technicians notes.

If you do not have control of the content, for externally produced
manuals, make a manual incorporating the technicians notes.

More work, but ISO qualified.



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