Quality Control (QC) measures vary widely by industry, and the concerns or standards of those industries. For example, in food processing and water management, quality control checks may include tests for contaminants, annual inspections, and certifications. In manufacturing, quality control measures may include certification by a particular group and random product testing to make sure the items are functioning as they are intended. Various professional occupations may have their own quality control standards to ensure that those practicing in the profession have met certain standards as well.
For food and water service, there are many different types of quality control measures put into place. An initial inspection of a restaurant will determine whether it is able to open, and then annual inspections usually happen from that point forward. The inspectors will look at food preparation, making sure the food surfaces are clean and that it is cooked to, and maintained at, the proper temperature. Food handling issues include making sure there is no chance of cross contamination. In public water systems, testing may take place more frequently to ensure contaminants are within acceptable levels.
Manufacturing often has many different types of QC measures, depending on the product being produced. For example, industrial equipment may be tested for strength and durability, and some products may be tested for consistency and conformity. Depending on the industry involved, there could be a variety of certifications or standards that must be met. A few of these include ASTM International, the American National Standards Institute, and the International Organization for Standardization. Each of these groups has certain benchmarks that manufacturers must meet in order to achieve certification.
Depending on the situation, quality control measures may also apply to various professional occupations. For example, teachers, attorneys and medical doctors are just a few of the professions that require a license in order to practice. If there are issues that come regarding professionalism or malpractice, then review boards will look at the issues and perhaps approve sanctions for the professional, up to possibly losing the license to practice. In addition to those oversight responsibilities, quality control policies may also require continuing education in certain areas for a professional to maintain an active license.
While quality control measures may help to ensure that consumers are protected to a certain degree, they do not always ensure a quality service or product. Therefore, consumers still must do some research in order to determine if their needs or wants are likely to be met in choosing a particular product or service provider. Quality control may help provide some direction, but is not the only consideration.