This article is written to meet the following sections of the Standards:
|BRCGS Food Safety Issue 8||1.1.4 Senior management review meetings|
1.1.5 Management of product safety, authenticity, legality and quality
|BRCGS Packaging Issue 6||1.1.3 Food safety and quality objectives|
1.1.4 Senior management review
1.1.5 Management meetings
|BRCGS Agents & Brokers Issue 3||1.1.3 Setting objectives and targets|
1.2.1 Review schedule
1.2.2 Review process
1.2.4 Product safety alerts
|BRCGS Storage & Distribution Issue 4||1.1.4 Objectives|
1.1.5 Reporting of issues
1.2.1 Review schedule
1.2.2 Review process
1.2.3 Meeting records
1.2.4 Operational meetings
|FSSC22000 Version 5.1||ISO 5.1e)f)g) Leadership and commitment|
|IFS Food Version 7||1.4 Management review|
|SQF Edition 9||2.1.2 Management Review|
Your solutions for business performance reviews
Everything you need to implement an effective and BRCGS compliant system is here:
- Senior management commitment eDocs (which include business performance reviews).
- Business performance reviews mini training.
- Senior management commitment super course (which includes business performance reviews).
To make it super simple for you we would recommend the eDocs and the super course – then you’ve got everything you need to comply with all of section 1 (including business performance reviews).
End-of-year business review
Management must attend a business review, to ensure that business objectives have been met.
The review must be planned and must be carried out at least once every 12 months.
End-of-year business review agenda
This must include evaluation of:
- Results of:
- External audits.
- Internal audit programme.
- The corrective and preventive action system.
- The complaints system and any customer feedback.
- Assessment of systems which:
- Identify non-conformances such as returns, rejections, wastage, testing, inspection and non-conforming materials.
- Control product safety, product defence, product fraud and process control.
- Any incidents, including both recalls and withdrawals.
- Review of the business plan objectives and completion of the SMART actions.
- Root cause analysis of any objectives that haven’t been met.
- Culture plan.
- Information review, business plan and set objectives and SMART actions for the forthcoming year.
- Resource requirements.
To ensure that the business plan is achieved, performance reviews must be scheduled and carried out:
- At a set frequency for BRCGS Packaging.
- At least quarterly for BRCGS Food and BRCGS Storage and Distribution.
- At least 6 monthly for BRCGS Agents and Brokers.
It’s essential that performance reviews are carried out at all levels within the business, to allow information to effectively flow up and down through the reporting channels.
Reporting of issues
Staff must be aware that they need to report any issues relating to product safety, legality, authenticity and quality, to a designated manager, so that immediate action can be taken where needed.
This must also include a mechanism for proactive suggestions for improvement.
Meeting records must be available for audit and include:
- Review of the business plan and objectives, including evidence that SMART actions have been verified.
- Root cause and preventive actions where objectives haven’t been met.
- Documentation of the forthcoming business plan and objectives.
Communication of the business plan, objectives and SMART actions to those who need them.
Types of business performance reviews
The mini training for business performance reviews, splits the meetings down into:
- Business review meetings
- Management meetings
- Performance review meetings
- One-to-one meetings
Each type of meeting has a purpose and they all link together to ensure that comunication flows up and down the levels of management in the business. Learn how to implement this structure into your business using this eLearning in just an hour.
Once the business plan and the objectives have been set, then the management team need to ensure that they’re met. They must do this using a programme of business performance review meetings.
Although the standard says these meetings must be at least every 12 months, you can’t really check that you’re on track by only reviewing it once. You have to report the information to senior management (as we discussed in the last section) regularly (e.g. quarterly if you’re a food site), so it makes sense that it’s reviewed when this happens.
These meetings must be scheduled. This means you must be able to prove that they’re booked, so the auditor has confidence that they’ll happen.
When these reviews happen you need to review:
- The last meeting and any actions, to make sure they happen when they said they should.
- The objectives and if they’re on track.
- Any resources that are needed to make sure that the objectives are achieved.
- If it’s the annual review, you need to assess any objectives that haven’t been met, to understand the underlying reasons – using root cause analysis. This information shall be used when setting future objectives and to facilitate continual improvement.
The BRCGS standards also say the following must be reviewed, but these items are really objectives – so they’re essentially saying you must include them in your objectives and targets:
- The results of internal, second-party and/or third-party audits.
- Customer complaints and the results of any customer feedback.
- Incidents (including both recalls and withdrawals).
- Returns/rejections, wastage, out-of-specification results and non-conforming materials.
- Progress with corrective and preventive actions.
They also say the following should be reviewed; this is to ensure that senior management have a top view understanding of how the overall management system is performing:
- The effectiveness of the systems for hazard analysis, product defence, authenticity and site security risk assessments. This means they need to review, the reviews of these systems – not the systems themselves. The aim is here, is for them to check that things are working as they should.
- Any changes to the standards, relevant legislative and customer codes of practice. Because if there are changes, they need to ensure these changes are implemented and that the business has the resources to do this.
It’s essential that performance review meetings cover all levels of management in the business, to allow information to effectively flow up and down the reporting channels.
Your business will most likely have meetings already in place and these are the meetings that the standard is referring to. If you have a huddle in the factory when the shift starts – this is included. The information that’s discussed here, should then be relayed at the morning meeting for example. The information at the morning meeting should then be wrapped up and discussed at weekly and monthly meetings. Which is then reviewed at quarterly senior management meetings and so on.
The communication should flow the other way too. When a direction is given in the quarterly senior management meeting, this should be transferred all the way back down to the shift huddle. The level of detail and the way it’s communicated would change, but the overall aim is to ensure everyone is working to the same goal.
If you don’t have shift or daily meetings, that’s okay, as long as they happen at least monthly. And make sure that it’s clear in the evidence of these meetings, that this is where issues relating to product safety, legality, authenticity and quality are reported.
Also, make sure that you can prove that staff know that they need to report any instances of unsafe or out-of-specification materials to a designated manager, so that action can be taken to resolve them. This also needs to include a way of staff being able to make suggestions for improvement.
Records of these meetings must be documented and used to aid the development of the following year’s business objectives. Where actions are raised in meetings, there must be evidence that these actions have been verified and signed off as completed within the agreed timescales. These records need to be available for audit.
2 key aspects to business performance reviews
- That the review is designed to correct any issues and ensure that the objectives are achieved.
- That the review should happen at all levels and information should flow up and down.
The mini training for business performance reviews explains how to build a meeting structure using these key aspects.
The purpose of business performance reviews
“The purpose of the business performance reviews is to ensure that:
- The business plan is achieved.
- Which ensures that the product is safe, legal, authentic and to the agreed quality.
Everyone within the business understands their role in achieving the overall business plan.”
This is an extract from the mini training for business performance reviews. In just an hour you can learn how to implement a BRCGS compliant meeting structure which continually assesses your performance against the business plan.
Your next steps
To make the process as quick as possible, we would recommend you complete the senior management commitment super course and use the senior management commitment eDocs. The eLearning and eDocs contain everything you need to comply with BRCGS section 1 for senior management commitment, which includes business performance reviews.