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Career Story: Quality Assurance Manager For A Digital Production Company

Quality Assurance Manager For A Digital Production Company

Job Title: Quality Manager

Type of Company: I work for a company that does digital production like web-sites and on-line advertisement for large companies.

Education: Electrical Engineering, Universidad de Costa Rica •• MBA, Universidad Hispanoamericana

Previous Experience: I started as a test engineer in a laser surgical company, then moved to an electronics manufacturer as a production superintendent. From there I went to the healthcare industry as a software quality assurance engineer, to an aerospace software company as operations manager and finally to a digital production company as a quality assurance manager.

Job Tasks: Typical tasks for me are checking on a customer complaint to try to fix it, investigating why some of our processes are not as efficient as we expected, creating procedures that explain how we perform certain tasks, training people in those procedures and conducting interviews when we need to hire personnel for our department.

Sometimes we need to tell our customers how long we expect a project to last so they'll know what the cost of the project will be. To do that, I need to go over the scope of the project and start thinking with my key people how long each task will take, as well as what risks are involved so we can avoid problems.

One tool that I have to use a lot is the root-cause analysis. This is a process to find out what is causing a specific problem. Sometimes we think that it is enough to stop the manifestation of the problem but this is just like putting a bandage to it. We need to investigate more in depth and eliminate the root cause of the problem.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job is seeing everything work as expected; that processes are being followed and that our efforts are leading to success.

The worst thing in my job is when I have to let go someone go, especially if that person is performing well but we don't have a project to assign him. Sometimes you have to juggle many tasks at the same time and you can't devote the attention you would like to each task. This causes a lot of stress because everybody is asking things at the same time. This is also a bad part of my job.

Job Tips: Dedicate a good part of your time to understanding the process. That way you can improve it.

Work with your people to understand their needs.

Always involve all parties in the process' design. That way you will get less resistance to change.

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