Last year, Consepsys asked various non-DC clients around the world to anonymously give their honest impression of their Document Control colleagues.
These clients included Managers, Engineers, Planners, Scientists, Construction Supervisors, Architects and even Aircraft Pilots.
We have selected a few anonymous testimonies, and we have split them into two categories: (1) Positive and (2) To be improved.
Please note that all names have been changed for anonymity.
John, Planner, Malaysia: “The Document Control Executive is very helpful. We are sat next to each other in the open space. It allows us to exchange information about the plan and deliverables in real time. I am always aware of progress before anyone else, thanks to the DC.”
Jack, Engineer, United Kingdom: “We are in the design phase of a new project. I love the way the Document Controller distributes documents per reviewer role, like “Review”, “Approval” or “Information only”. It saves me from unnecessarily opening tens of emails before I can find out what really concerns me. It allows me to focus on what I need to do when things get really busy.”
Peter, Project Manager, Canada: “I didn’t know much about Document Control before I hired Jane. I had a very limited idea of what I expected from it, really. All I needed was for someone to create Document Numbers for me. What I got in Jane is someone that pro-actively manages a whole lot of activities for me, like distributions, reviews and comments and that keeps an audit trail of all submissions. She taught me all I know about Document Control and, funnily enough, with all I know now, I am now more demanding towards DC than I have ever been!”
(2) To be improved
Paul, Package Manager, Australia: “I get very frustrated with the Client’s Document Control person. The rules are not clear and they keep delaying our progress, for no good reason. Some transparency on the rules and processes would be appreciated.”
Bill, Operations Manager, United States: “The final documentation packages I receive from Projects is always messy and full of mistakes. We have to wait an eternity for the documents, and when we finally get them, the Document Controller sends us lots of incorrect revisions and lots of drawings that are not even “as-built”. We are thinking of hiring our own Document Controller, just to sort out their mess.”
Bob, Construction Superintendent, United Arab Emirates: “This Document Controller was hired because he was supposed to be the best. But all he did was come in with procedures and templates from his previous job, and he tried to implement them here. It doesn’t work in this company. We are not in the same industry and the practices and tools he brings don’t even apply to us! A lot of time and money have been wasted in the process.”
Whether the above testimonies are in category (1) or category (2), they should be seen as an opportunity to better understand the perceptions and the needs of Document Control stakeholders.
We hope that the above gives our Document Control readers a glimpse of the areas where they can make sure that they perform impeccably.