Lessons Learned System LogoQuality Management (QM) is critical in most production and testing operations, whether in industry on a production line, or in a testing laboratory facility. Ensuring that an adequate and useful Lessons Learned system accompanies these processes is paramount for successful operations and mandatory for ISO accreditation. An interesting example of introducing Lessons Learned to a testing laboratory is ESA’s cobalt-60 irradiation facility, for which our experts set up such a system. This was the first facility in ESA’s Product Assurance and Safety Department to apply for and receive ISO 17025 accreditation; the systematic and elegant approach was hailed as exemplary for Europe.

ESA’s cobalt-60 irradiation facility

Implementing Lessons Learned in a useful manner in the case of this lab involved the very sensitive scenario of comparing teams in similar environments, but in different organizations / directorates (external audits and internal audits). There naturally arose concern about such audits – especially external audits. But whereas the prospects of such audits were first viewed with fear and trepidation, as trust was built up and the usefulness was realized, the audits transformed into events that were looked forward to!

Accreditation ceremony as ESA’s Cobalt-60 Irradiation Facility gains ISO quality stamp. F Moser (collaborating partner of this consultancy) headed the data management team that was instrumental in achieving this goal.