Rachel Beavins Tracy

Rachel Beavins Tracy
Rachel Tracy is a writer for EtQ with expertise in environmental, healthcare and technology topics. She has a master’s degree from Vanderbilt University and has been writing for businesses since 2008.

Recent Posts

5 Ways Cloud-Based QMS Software Can Help with Task Management

[fa icon="calendar'] Fri, Dec 08, 2017 / by Rachel Beavins Tracy

If you’ve watched the hit satire Portlandia, you might remember a sketch where Fred Armisen is frantically switching back and forth between reading funny blogs, answering text messages, checking email and updating his Netflix queue.

His friend, Carrie Brownstein, tries to help him overcome this endless hamster wheel of distractions. Suddenly, they’re speaking telepathically via “Mind-Fi,” which she says is like WiFi for thoughts and will let Fred put down his devices (until an ad interrupts them and makes his brain melt down).

Quality managers often have similar problems, jumping from one system to another, sifting through spreadsheets and checking off audit questions until they can barely see their larger quality goals.

With that in mind, let’s look at 5 ways cloud-based Quality Management System (QMS) software can help streamline your work through more efficient task management.

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Quality Management

4 Risk Management Gaps and Opportunities [Infographic]

[fa icon="calendar'] Thu, Dec 07, 2017 / by Rachel Beavins Tracy

To achieve operational excellence, you need a comprehensive, forward-thinking approach to managing safety and quality risks.

This infographic identifies 4 of the most common risk management gaps and shows you how solutions like quality management software can help mitigate these risks.

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Quality Management Life Sciences Food and Beverage EHS Risk Management

Ask a 70s Pop Deejay Anything About Quality Management

[fa icon="calendar'] Tue, Dec 05, 2017 / by Rachel Beavins Tracy

If you’re a fan of the satirical news site, The Onion, you might be familiar with the advice columns with titles like “Ask a Bee,” “Ask a Close Personal Friend of Teri Garr,” and “Ask a High-School Student Who Didn’t Do the Required Reading.”

What makes them funny is that the responses have less to do with readers’ inquiries, and more with the columnists’ own issues (like a rambling, off-topic attempt at fudging the plot of Animal Farm).

In a similar vein, today’s post is a fun take on what a 1970s pop deejay would have to say about common quality management questions and concerns.

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Quality Management Fun Takes

3 Types of Leading Indicators for EHS Management

[fa icon="calendar'] Fri, Dec 01, 2017 / by Rachel Beavins Tracy

You hear it all the time on Car Talk, the classic radio show where mechanics Tom and Ray (aka “Click and Clack”) dispense hilarious advice to clueless car owners. The caller’s car was smoking for months before breaking down. Or the driver taped over a flashing temperature light, continuing to drive her dad’s car until it died altogether.

It’s a similar story in companies struggling with Environmental, Health and Safety (EHS) problems. It sometimes seems like incidents come out of nowhere, but the signs were actually there all along. Those signs are leading indicators.

While lagging indicators like incidence rates look backward, leading indicators such as near-misses hint at potential future problems.

This post examines the 3 types of leading indicators defined by the National Safety Council, including operations-based, systems-based and behavior-based indicators.

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EHS Management

4 Benefits of Using a Cloud-Based Quality Management System to Improve Traceability

[fa icon="calendar'] Fri, Nov 24, 2017 / by Rachel Beavins Tracy

If you’ve seen The Secret Life of Pets, you probably remember the scene where dogs Max and Duke happen upon a sausage factory.

They ride a conveyor belt throughout the factory, gobbling up sausages as fast as they’re made. Soon, they’re in a dream sequence with thousands of singing and dancing sausages, until they’re swimming in a pool of them. By the time animal control discovers the dogs, fat and drunk on sausages, the dogs have presumably contaminated the entire production line.

Will food safety pros find out about the incident before products ship? What’s the plan if customers report dog hair (or worse) in their food? Obviously, this isn’t the movie’s focus, but if it were, traceability would certainly be an issue.

In today’s post, we examine how a cloud-based Quality Management System (QMS) improves traceability, helping protect both consumers and manufacturers.

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Food and Beverage

A Dog’s Guide to Quality Management Software

[fa icon="calendar'] Tue, Nov 14, 2017 / by Rachel Beavins Tracy

Gone are the days when most dogs were relegated to a lonely backyard existence, when a pup might never set foot in the house (let alone take up more than their fair share of the bed). Nowadays, the most fortunate dogs are pampered with such delights as a dog massage, specialty bakeries and webcam-equipped pet hotels.

Today, we’re looking at quality management software from a dog’s perspective, focusing on things your dog wishes you knew about employee training, supplier management, corrective action and more.

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Quality Management

Tips for Managing the Top 5 Life Sciences Risks [Infographic]

[fa icon="calendar'] Tue, Nov 07, 2017 / by Rachel Beavins Tracy

Life sciences companies face risks that threaten product quality, patient safety and profitability--this infographic reviews these risks and provides tips for mitigating them. Read More

Life Sciences Risk Management

How Wearable Technology Can Improve Aviation Safety

[fa icon="calendar'] Tue, Oct 17, 2017 / by Rachel Beavins Tracy

According to Forbes, the wearable tech market will be worth $34 billion by 2020, with experts predicting over 400 million wearable devices in use by that time.

When most of us think about wearable technology, things like Apple Watch, Fitbit and posture monitors usually come to mind. But they also have the potential to help companies improve in areas like safety and efficiency, and the aviation industry is no exception.

Today, we’re exploring how wearables can have an impact on aviation safety, from streamlining maintenance with smart glasses to preventing worker injuries.

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aviation

Do You Know the True Cost of EHS Risk? [Infographic]

[fa icon="calendar'] Thu, Oct 05, 2017 / by Rachel Beavins Tracy

Ineffective EHS risk management practices contribute to huge costs at U.S. companies, causing a drag on the entire economy. Workplace injuries, inefficient systems, and the release of toxic chemicals are just some of the downfalls.   

Ineffective EHS risk management practices contribute to huge costs at U.S. companies, causing a drag on the entire economy. Workplace injuries, inefficient systems, and the release of toxic chemicals are just some of the downfalls.   

View our infographic to learn the true cost of EHS risk.

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EHS

Operational Excellence in Food and Beverage: What Are Market Leaders Doing?

[fa icon="calendar'] Mon, Oct 02, 2017 / by Rachel Beavins Tracy

Research by the Aberdeen Group shows that operational excellence leaders in food and beverage outperform their profit margin goals by a full 9%, also spending one-third less on quality costs than their competitors

What are market leaders getting right about operational excellence that laggards are missing? These leaders maximize productivity and minimize costs by focusing on areas like data integration, standardization and performance management, all while keeping quality and safety at the forefront.

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Food and Beverage

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