Systek's Quality Assurance
Systek has a long-established Quality Program for assuring the quality of services and customer deliverables as well as compliance with contract provisions. Systek is an ISO 9001-2015 certified organization, and all of our Quality Assurance actions are undertaken in accordance with ISO 9001-2015.
Quality Assurance Policy and Goals
It is Systek's policy to provide superior services that meet or exceed our customers' expectations by thoroughly evaluating their unique needs and tailoring our products and performance to those needs.It is Systek's policy to establish and execute an effective and economical quality program, covering both processes and deliverables. It is also Systek's policy to perform all activities in a manner that reflects a total commitment to quality. This means maintaining the highest standards of quality in all actions and a constant dedication to the principle of maintaining the highest levels of quality and integrity in communicating with people inside and outside of Systek. Systek holds its Program Managers, Project Managers, or Lead Engineers responsible for monitoring customer satisfaction on a continuing basis, making appropriate adjustments and corrections if problems occur. It is Systek's goal to encourage all employees to strive for individual excellence in their work and in their association with other people inside and outside of the workplace. It is Systek's goal to motivate employees to achieve this excellence by providing leadership, training, proper materials and facilities, and a cooperative environment.
QA Organizational Structure
Systek Program Managers, Project Managers, and Lead Engineers have established quality goals and a commitment to follow standards and procedures allowing the management of multiple projects or task orders.
Our deliverables documents are the result of consultation and collaboration with the customer such as: white papers, Statements of Work (SOWs), test reports, test procedures, specifications, procurement data packages, acquisition plans, contract type recommendations, and evaluation criteria. All project work is performed under the direction of Systek Program Managers, Project Managers, or Lead Engineers who are responsible for directing and monitoring the efforts of Systek personnel assigned to the task.
Role of the Program Manager, Project Manager, and Lead Engineer
Activities of the Program Manager, Project Manager, and Lead Engineer include monitoring deliverables to ensure the highest level of technical quality, compliance with customer direction, and conformance to the contract and SOW. Duties also include: Reviewing the status of activities completed to date, near-term objectives, and any critical risks or problems affecting deliverable quality; participating as active members in reviews and corrective action activities; auditing work products to verify compliance with contractual requirements and deliverable development plans. Program Manager, Project Manager, and Lead Engineers are authorized to set and reorder immediate priorities to respond to urgent requirements established by our customer in the following manner:
- When an urgent request is made by a customer, the informed Systek engineer notifies the cognizant Program Manager, Project Manager, or Lead Engineer.
- The Program Manager, Project Manager, or Lead Engineer alerts his peers of the urgency in the event that resources may be required from elsewhere in Systek.
- The Program Manager, Project Manager, and Lead Engineer implements his response with the cooperation of his peers to assure that the plan is workable and has the least impact on existing activities while satisfying the urgent request.
Systek services activities are project oriented, allowing Systek staff to be able to respond to multiple Task Orders.
Customer reviews, both formal and informal, are conducted regularly and are used to:
- Evaluate SOW requirements.
- Validate engineering approaches and processes.
- Ensure customer satisfaction with Systek's approach and deliverable products.
- Obtain customer feedback with regard to the totality of the service provided by Systek.
- Program Manager, Project Manager, and Lead Engineers monitor these reviews to ensure the customer requirements are addressed appropriately. They also ensure that review proceedings and results are documented properly.
Peer reviews are used to identify and remove defects from deliverables early in the development cycle and to increase communication across teams and departmental boundaries. Findings resulting from peer reviews form the basis for corrective actions to be taken by the primary author of the product. The Program Manager, Project Manager, or Lead Engineer acts as the Peer Review Lead and is responsible for ensuring that the primary author has conducted adequate peer review of the product. Prior to delivery to the customer, the Peer Review Lead is responsible for conducting a complete review of the product to ensure validity of technical approach, confirm that the highest technical standards have been applied, and to ensure compliance with customer direction, the SOW, and the contract. In the event corrective action is necessary, the Peer Review Lead is responsible for discussing the actions with the primary author, monitoring progress toward completion of the actions, and conducting a follow-up review to ensure that all corrective actions have been satisfactorily incorporated into our Deliverable Production Process. In order for Systek to produce deliverables according to requirements, a clear and effectively defined Production Process is key.
The following steps describe the Production Process:
- The requirement for a deliverable product is determined through discussion between the customer and the Peer Review Lead.
- The Peer Review Lead assigns an author to the task and discusses the product and appropriate peer resources to be utilized by the author.
- The primary author prepares a draft product and actively seeks peer input and review during preparation, and additionally seeks Peer Review Lead’s input when necessary.
- The draft product is given to the Systek Publication Staff where the type of document and formatting requirements are determined. The primary functions performed by the Publication Staff include assignment of a unique Systek Document Number reflecting the contract and task number, technical editing, spelling and grammar checking, preparing new graphic diagrams, inserting existing graphic diagrams, renumbering of paragraphs, formatting tables and figures, preparation of a table of contents, preparation of an acronym list, establishing or maintaining a revision history, and preparation of front and back covers.
- The Publication Staff reviews all changes with the document author. After the author and the Publication Staff have completed the draft document, a hard copy goes back to the author for final review. When the author is satisfied, the Systek Program Manager, Project Manager, or Lead Engineer reviews the product and may initiate a further peer review if necessary. The Systek Program Manager, Project Manager, or Lead Engineer discusses any changes with the author who then instructs the Publication Staff to make the corrections to the soft copy of the document.
- In the course of incorporating the final changes, the document is then edited/reviewed for final content, grammar, spelling, and correlation between TOC and its references. Someone other than the person doing the formatting always conducts editing. When editing is complete, suggested editing changes are reviewed with the author for approval.
- The author informs the Production Staff of the distribution and the manner in which the document will be delivered to the customer at which time a Delivery Letter is created. The Program Manager, Project Manager, or Lead Engineer conducts a final review of the deliverable and signs the Delivery Letter.
- Once the Delivery Letter is signed, the Publication Staff returns the document to the author in the requested media format, at which time it becomes a formal deliverable to the customer. The deliverables record is updated to reflect this latest deliverable. The deliverable is distilled into "read only" PDF format and added to all the other baselined deliverables on the Systek file server.
- Any modifications or changes to a base-lined deliverable result in the revised document receiving a new Systek Document Number while the original deliverable is never changed.
Meeting Urgent Requirements
Those requirements made on an immediate basis for a short term but critical work effort are best handled by those currently working with the customer to respond to the need. Systek is well suited to such tasks as the depth and breadth of Systek's experience, combined with the knowledge of the customer's needs, allows Systek engineers to respond and deliver ffectively on urgent requirements in the following manner: Upon evaluation of the requirement, Systek's Program Manager, Project Manager and Lead Engineers are authorized to set and reorder immediate priorities to enable response to urgent requirements established by our customer. When our customer establishes an urgent requirement, the informed Systek engineer notifies the Program Manager, Project Manager, and Lead Engineer. The Program Manager, Project Manager, and Lead Engineer alerts his peers of the urgent requirement in the event that resources may be required from elsewhere in Systek. The Program Manager, Project Manager, and Lead Engineer then formulates his response with the cooperation of his peers to assure that the plan is workable, and has the least impact on existing customer activities while satisfying the customer's urgent requirement request. Systek addresses short-term urgent requirements resources from within the current staff. When urgent requirements are forecasted to go beyond a two to three week span, Systek initiates the short-term process outlined above to satisfy the immediate urgency, and simultaneously initiates an action to recruit and hire appropriately skilled staff to assign to the longer-term requirement. Systek maintains an inventory of profiles and resumes of skilled staff for the purpose of responding to longer-term requirements. This inventory includes skilled staff seeking permanent assignment as well as staff willing to begin work on short notice, either on a part-time or a full-time basis. In the event that permanent assignments are necessary, professional business practice dictates that such people would take at least three weeks to augment the staff with time to interview, prepare offers, and tender notice of termination.
All senior Systek engineers provide personal guidance and mentoring in the Systek deliverable process ensuring that the quality control standards and procedures are met and complied with in the normal course of business with Systek customers. There are periodic reviews of this plan and all modifications or changes are published in a general memorandum to all staff members.