Queries, or whatever you choose to call them are the lifeblood of QMS, and the heart of QMS is the Query list.
This is the list of things that you want to track and manage.
The lifecycle of query creation, response, and closure starts from the QMS Main Query Screen.
Let’s start with adding a query to QMS.
Add a query
Look for the ‘New Item’ button in the Toolbar (the line of buttons, running along the top left of the Main Query Screen).
If you can’t see this button in your toolbar then you may not have permission to add queries to the system.
Note that in the screen grab above, Peggy Carter doesn’t have a New Item button in her toolbar.
Here’s a screen grab from Jessica Jones, who has permission to add queries. The screens are almost identical - the ‘New Item’ button is highlighted, top left:
Your local QMS Admin should be able to help with any questions.
Even if you can’t add a query please keep reading, we’ll get to how to View and Process a query in a bit.
Click the New Item button, select the project you’re interested in, and click OK.
The Add Query page looks like this:
(In the screengrab above - Jessica Jones logged into QMS, clicked the New Item button in the toolbar, selected the InterfaceManagement project, and clicked OK.)
You’ll see there’s quite a lot going on in this page, but creating a query is straightforward.
As a minimum, you only need to complete the sections marked Required on the Query Details tab.
Let’s do that now.
Go ahead and enter a Query Title. Try and make this as informative as possible. Once your query list contains hundreds of queries a concise title can help the reader identify what the query is about at a glance.
The Query Number will be generated for you when you save the query.
The Query Title and Query Number are displayed in the header of the query edit screen.
Select the Type of query (e.g. DR, IQ, TQ – although your query types may be different).
Select the QMS user the query is being addressed To.
Note that the creator of the query appears as From. (Jessica Jones in the example above.)
Pick the Date Due. This is your deadline for getting a satisfactory answer and checking the ‘Query Response Completed’ checkbox. (We’ll get to this.)
You can now allow creators of queries to edit the query due date, even if they do not have permissions to edit queries once they have been created.
Enter a Query Description. Go into as much detail here as necessary to avoid, “What do you mean?” responses.
You can optionally select a Scope of Work, and highlight Impact Areas, and Implications.
The Attachments tab allows the addition of supporting documents and pictures. Query and project attachments are date-time stamped automatically on upload.
Here’s a completed example:
Once you’re finished, click the Save button. This notifies the involved parties and returns to the Main Query Screen.
A Save as Draft button has been added to the query create screen. This button allows queries to be saved while they are still being worked on, so that the creator can come back to them at a later point in time. Saving a query as Draft prevents it from being set in motion, and only the creator can access it. Once they become Live they will be visible to all members of a project/team.
Remember that QMS is totally configurable to match your business and processes so don’t be alarmed if your Add Query page looks different.
If information is missing or confusing, please contact your local QMS Admin.
Now let’s take a quick look at processing a query, starting with viewing a query.