By Ms. Rachel Newton (AMC)March 20, 2013
During mid-January, Pine Bluff Arsenal underwent recertification of the installation's Environmental Management System-ISO 14001, and surveillance audits were conducted
on the Quality and Safety Management Systems-ISO 9001 and OHSAS 18001.
A consolidation of the ISO management systems policy letters occurred in November resulting in the management summary - "Right today. Better tomorrow."
"The consolidation came out an idea to make employees more knowledgeable in general about the policies," said Doug McKim, acting environmental chief for the Directorate of Risk Management and Regulatory Affairs. "In past audits, an auditor would come and ask an employee about the environmental policy, and they just didn't have good answers. This phrase made it easier for the employees to remember. The auditors will want to know during the next
audit what that phrase means to the employee."
In brief, the policy letter states that the Arsenal is "committed to producing quality ammunition and chemical defensive equipment in an environmentally sensitive and sustainable manner. 'Right today' simply means complying with regulations, policies, plans, work instructions, Standard Operating Procedures and other requirements. 'Better tomorrow' means that every day, the Arsenal will make improvements. Every time we start a manufacturing or administrative process, it should be more efficient and more environmentally friendly than it was before."
Nancy Owen, Arsenal quality management systems representative, said members of the audit team praised the policy consolidation. "Steve McKee with Orion Registrar, Inc. said 'the new policy is outstanding, unique and is easily understood. It encompasses the organizations desire to integrate the three standards'," said Owen.
In addition to the policy letter consolidation, Owen said fiscal year 2013 internal audits for quality and environmental have been integrated too. Stephen Still, chief of safety for the Directorate of Risk Management and Regulatory Affairs, said the Arsenal's safety program, is very mature in how it complies with AR 385-10, the Army Safety Program.
"Combining existing safety audits into the integrated quality and environmental audits is something we may consider in the future. We need to determine how the integration would take place and that there are no negative impacts on either the integrated audits or existing safety audits and other safety programs," he said.
The Arsenal has twelve internal auditors that conduct audits across the installation, during each fiscal year. Internal audits are conducted in all areas including each operating production line, Business Operations, Engineering and Technology, Contracting, Logistics, Security, Resource
Management, Public Works, etc.