Tellermate makes electronic cash counters that count both notes and coins by weighing them, allowing a full cash till to be counted in under a minute. Worldwide, retailers, banks and restaurants use the machines to help them to improve the efficiency and security of their cash processes. UK clients include Boots, Homebase, Barclays, HSBC, Pret A Manger, KFC, Argos, Next, New Look, and Peacocks.
A history of quality management
“As a company we have held ISO 9002 covering our manufacturing processes since 1999,” says John Pilkington, General Manager Engineering and Operations.
“We then extended this to cover other areas of the organisation, such as the service and design elements, when we became ISO 9001:2000 certified in 2003. We carried out further work to encompass the sales and marketing function, which had been moved to the UK from our European offices, in order to qualify for ISO 9001:2008 in 2009.”
“Quality of product and service is absolutely vital to us,” comments Paul Rendell, Group Managing Director. “The accuracy of our products is at the heart of their functionality, and it has always been the goal of the company to carry this attribute into all aspects of our organisation and customer service.”
Targets set and achieved
To maintain the goal of ‘each step right, first time, every time’ the company executive directors set specific quality objectives, reviewed by a Quality Steering Group. This group disseminates a policy of continuously improving the quality of each operation, transaction and interaction, between internal and external customers.
Results continue to impress. In its 2008 quality statistics, Tellermate revealed that less than 0.2% of its units sold during 2007 and 2008 were returned during their first year of service.
In addition, over 99% of requests for product customisation were identified and delivered within the timeframe requested by the customer.
The survey also found 98% of customer invoices were issued correctly and on time and over 99% of orders were dispatched on or before the date quoted to the customer on placement of their order.
Reviewing systems for ISO 9001:2008
“It wasn’t a big step to prepare for ISO 9001:2008, because the company keeps all systems under continuous rolling audit review,” says Pilkington.
“We keep our staff involved in the quality process as they run the various committees and audit teams. Team members audit departments independent of their area and use their company knowledge to suggest and implement improvements to processes. There are also a number of committees that meet regularly to investigate internal and customer issues plus the annual management review, which looks at the entire quality system throughout the organisation.
“We gather customer comments via regular surveys, analysis of customer helpline data and monitoring of comments and complaints. Suppliers are also managed within the quality process, and the Materials Department monitors and reports back on quality and timeliness of deliveries.”
The added value of certification
“Working towards certification regulates and provides a structure for all of the company quality processes,” says Pilkington.
“Achieving certification demonstrates to our customers, suppliers and employees that we are an organisation that takes quality very seriously and works towards continuous improvement. We strive to be perceived as a high quality company by all parties that we come into contact with.
“Certification has added customer and supplier confidence in the organisation, as well as positively motivating our staff.”
Certification benefits clients
How does Tellermate’s proactive approach to quality issues deliver benefits to its clients?
“We do everything possible to address and resolve quality issues immediately and use our collective experience to identify, predict and prevent issues from arising,” says Pilkington.
Additionally, end customers benefit from a high quality product that has a mean time between failure in excess of 6 years and a comprehensive customer support programme that has been answering and resolving customer queries in four languages since 2003.
Future impact on the business
In the future, Tellermate aims to maintain its position as one of the market leaders by continuing to provide innovative and reliable solutions to its customers. Good practice and quality control are central to this.
All internal targets have been met and exceeded with the exception of a new target concerning unqueried invoices. This area has shown significant improvement with queried invoices reducing from 3% on first measurement to 1.5% by the end of 2008. This is being monitored into 2009 and the company has seen the goal of ‘under 1%’ met in March.
How SGS services help
“SGS has provided us with a long-term partner throughout our quality accreditation process,” says Pilkington. “Having a long-term partnership like this has allowed knowledge of our company and of ISO requirements to grow and for advice to be proactive and relevant. Tellermate intend to continue towards improved quality standards and look forward to continuing to work with SGS on this.”
“Tellermate were very well organised for the audit,” says Allan Watkins, SGS auditor. “They are clearly a very positive company with a very good product. Without doubt, they are maximizing the benefits of the ISO 9001:2008 standard.”
SGS United Kingdom Ltd
Tel: 01276 697999