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What is the efficient way and tricks to address, handle and treat the risk and opportunity?

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Guest user Created:   Jun 17, 2020 Last commented:   Jun 18, 2020

What is the efficient way and tricks to address, handle and treat the risk and opportunity?

What is the efficient way and tricks to address, handle and treat the risk and opportunity? We are proceeding to cover all risks and opportunities for our laboratory activities and I'm asking is there a generic optimum (more efficient) method to carry out this task?

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ISO 17025 DOCUMENTATION TOOLKIT

Step-by-step implementation for smaller companies.

ISO 17025 DOCUMENTATION TOOLKIT

Step-by-step implementation for smaller companies.

Expert
Tracey Evans Jun 18, 2020

The most efficient way to address, handle and treat the risk and opportunity is to start by knowing what ISO 17025 requires and keep it simple!

ISO 17025:2017 does not require a formal risk management program nor documented risk management process.  What it requires, as a minimum, is for laboratories to consider and address risks and opportunities that may impact (negatively and positively), on its activities and objectives including the validity of results. Address the activity bearing in mind, at all times, that the objective is to safeguard competence, impartiality and consistent operation of your laboratory.

The goal is to create a structure where the management system is shielded from “upsets” i.e. nonconforming events; and opportunities to drive improvement are enhanced. I suggest initially coming up with a method to consider and address risks first. Then adapt or integrate opportunities into your approach.

You can approach this activity through a sequence of simple steps, whilst using a spreadsheet as a register / risk index.

The steps and measures taken to address risks and opportunities will vary depending on the context of your laboratory. Remember this is an activity that is iterative – it will involve getting started then repeating the cycle to improve the process and adjust the risks and controls as your management system evolves.

As a general overview, considering and addressing risks to meet ISO 17025 involves five steps:.

Step 1: Identifying risks (What can happen, when, where why and how?).

Step 2: Evaluating the risk (Determine existing controls, determine likelihood and consequences leading to estimate level of risk).

Step 3: Ranking the risks (Determine which is to be addressed first, then second, and so on).

Step 4: Determining actions to be taken (Compare against criteria, Identify and weigh options, dependent on availability of resources and the costs to address the risk. Decide on response and establish priorities).

Step 5: Implementing, monitoring and following up (Selected actions must then be implemented within the laboratory. Laboratory management will be responsible for ensuring that resources are provided, that the proposed actions are taken, and that they are having the desired effect).

I shall be sharing more detailed methods and tips in the Free ISO17025 Academy webinar – How to manage risks in laboratories according to ISO 17025. You can register at https://advisera.com/17025academy/webinar/iso-17025-risk-management-how-to-manage-it-free-webinar-on-demand/ to attend on the 1 July 2020.

For more information regarding  actions to address risks and opportunities, see the ISO 17025 toolkit document template: Addressing Risks and Opportunities Procedure - https://advisera.com/17025academy/documentation/addressing-risks-and-opportunities-procedure/ 
and for more information on the five steps to address risks, see the article Five-step laboratory risk management according to ISO 17025:2017 - https://advisera.com/17025academy/blog/2019/12/05/iso-17025-risk-management-in-five-steps/

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