How to ensure your food safety program is a success!!
Over time people and programs can age....which may mean that they deteriorate and degrade over time. In order for a person to not deteriorate it is important that they eat healthy, exercise and maintain a healthy lifestyle. But what do you do to make sure that your operational and food safety programs don't deteriorate or degrade over time? And if you are like most, what can you do in order to ensure continuous improvement of your programs?
It is important for manufacturers to:
- Have strong leadership support of your food safety program.
- Minimize employee turnover. Minimize temporary employees.
- Have ongoing training and investment into your employees.
- Link financial incentives (bonus, raise) to both food safety and production.
Without strong leadership support your food safety program will fail! This needs to be true commitment and not just lip service. When the Sr. Leaders believe that food safety is as important as production than you can ensure that everyone will be on the same page. Plant managers and Food Safety managers need to have the authority to hold / destroy product when it is questionable in safety or quality. If the Sr. Leaders believe in its importance than you will have all of your supervisors and lead hands support as well. This is an amazing accomplishment.
If you can have everyone believing that food safety is as important as getting the production out the door than you will have people question things when they aren't sure about something. You will have them completing the paperwork with diligence which should increase the accuracy and improve efficiency.
By minimizing employee turnover and temporary employees, the training that has been done with the team will be more impact-full. It will mean that all of your employees will be working from the same knowledge base, and they will know their responsibilities well. Having this amount of consistency in their knowledge will make food safety practices second nature, and ensure that they can keep focused on production.
Ongoing training and investment in your employee continue to show the employees that they are important to you and your operation. With ongoing training employees will have stronger retention of food safety information which means they will perform at a higher level consistently. Opening up the dialogue between management and employees is important to ensure success. They need to be able to ask anything and not fear repercussion.
Ultimately, if you link any financial gain, whether it is a raise or a bonus to both production and food safety they will see that these two things are equally important and are linked. Without food safety you jeopardize your brand but without production you have nothing to jeopardize.
Keeping things fresh and continually improving is as simple as maintaining consistency with what the message is. By changing things up with the delivery of key food safety elements and getting as many people involved with the delivery you will ensure that the you continue to improve and have a successful program!
If you need help with your food safety program please don't hesitate to contact us for a free quote; Melissa Stevenson at www.fsrdconsulting.com.