Integrity Issues Prevention in Quality Control Inspection
During quality inspection, all QC providers who are professional should be very careful in preventing the issues of integrity by putting in place specific practices. This is according to inspection service that were provided since 2008. Strict policies are provided by AQI Service so that you may be protected and ensuring that your reports are transparent and accurate as much as possible.
•High Integrity Behavior Which is Encouraged by Hiring Practices
Hiring the right people is the beginning of encouraging high integrity. To discourage the habit of receiving corrupt finances and accepting bribes outside, the inspectors must be financially stable by being well paid. This ensures that they are receiving what they deserve after the hard work they do. For this reason, AQI Service provide higher and competitive salary to our inspectors which is beyond the average market salary. The inspectors who are financial stable can more likely work independently and objectively
•Screening of Integrity During the Process of interview
Our screening and hiring process to potential inspectors are a wonder to some importers. They ask how we do it. Questions the hiring managers often ask to assess integrity of the candidate include:
- From the several rewards and gratuities you may receive from staff working at the factory, which one do you think would seem inappropriate?
- Have you ever received a reward from someone else other than an employer for causing result on a certain job?
- By accepting bribe, do you consider your job may be affected and how?
How the inspectors will respond, we are able to assess his experience and judgment on how he will handle challenging situations. By so doing we are assured that the inspectors are able to identify any attempts of corruption and thereby report them.
•Code of Ethics Used to Address Integrity On Inspection Staff
In any company, employees must always be reminded the importance of company values by the set Code of Ethics. Likewise AQI Service has its own Code of Ethics which is more detailed. It includes what is appropriate and inappropriate behavior in this field. One example is the prohibition of any activity that can affect the effectual judgment of the inspector. The activities include:
- Any socialization outside of inspection area with factory staff and or vendor staff while having any leisure activities including and not limited to alcohol consumption, sight-seeing, karaoke and many others that are not job related.
- Giving and accepting any form of bribe, kickbacks for all or part of contract payment.
- Giving any confidential data to unauthorized person apart from factory staff and consultants who are directly related in providing to our clients quality services.
- All personal business which includes but not limited to selling, buying and providing services for or on behalf of client, supplier or vendor
The AQI Service Code of Ethics also specifies that if the factory in any way tries to bribe our inspector with cash or gifts of any kind, this should be reported to the management of AQI Service immediately and without fail. If for any reason they fail to report on time, then severe disciplinary action should be instituted on them. It is also very clear that should AQI find out that an inspector received bribe, then their employment is terminated immediately.
•QC Inspectors Policies and Integrity Documentation
Factory Integrity Declaration Form is submitted for every service AQI Service takes as another way of preventive measure. A factory representative must fill out the form and sign it after the completion of services. This will restrict providing unauthorized benefits like gifts or personal favors like meals, transportation or accommodation to the inspector.
Also we discourage any interactions that seem to be common or normal in Chinese culture which include accepting meal or cigarette which may be provided by the factory. It is in the policy that the factory is prohibited to provide lunch to AQI Service staff which exceeds 20RMB or about US$3 per one staff.
•QC Inspectors Rotating Regularly
Even without offering bribes and gifts to the inspectors, familiarity can influence and corrupt reporting. Familiarity may occur due to a certain inspector being in one factory for several weeks. Rotating them can prevent this familiarity which develops friendship with factory staff.
Even some importers would specifically prefer a particular inspector in their every factory visit. But to prevent this from happening, we rotate them regularly to regulate impartiality and being reliable.
•Monitoring Inspector Conduct in the Field by Internal Audits
While all the above practices are adhered to, it is still very difficult to monitor the behavior of the inspectors in the factory. Sometimes we even send inspection supervisors to shadow the inspectors in their assigned factories. While arranging to undertake this process, we make sure the inspector is not aware of it so that it can be effective in exposing the interactions that take place between the inspector and factory staff.
Inspectors may change their behavior when the supervisor is around. But the managers can easily notice discrepancies in the review history and in the inspection results or method used which exactly shows there was an integrity issue
Example, if in five consecutive inspections a certain product narrowly passed, and then suddenly the same product in the next few inspections and with the same inspector start to easily pass, then the managers will question the process and institute investigation on those sudden changes by rotating inspectors.
It is hard for the importer to notice integrity issues during the phace of product QC. This can easily happen when having a low-budget QC who is mean in paying their staff and is not keen on integrity issues which relates to Quality Control Inspection Providers in Asia. When AQI Service fail in keeping up to their quality services, it will definitely affect your factory and also your customers.
AQI Service is keen in preventing integrity problems by tackling all the above mentioned issues. We manage this by putting high policies, documentation and observing strict measures in hiring and closely monitoring their inspectors.