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Project title

A review of potential efficiency and effectiveness improvements in rail industry supplier assurance (T833)

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  • Topic:

    Safety Policy and Risk Management
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Project Summary

This research has reviewed supplier assurance arrangements across the rail industry.  It has identified significant potential improvements that could be achieved by the development of a supplier assurance framework, which allows suppliers to readily understand the mainline railway industry requirements and demonstrate this through universally recognised evidence and processes.

Project Abstract

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The Rail Industry Supplier Approval Scheme (RISAS) has been in place for some three years.  Designed to provide economies to the rail industry by reducing duplication of the auditing and assessment of suppliers, it is still one of many in-house and industry-wide schemes in use. The potential of RISAS has not yet been achieved, so the industry asked RSSB to identify where efficiencies could be found and more effective practices implemented that would allow the industry to benefit from the potential savings to be made.
The main aims of this project were to:
• Identify the costs involved in compliance within the industry's various schemes.
• Identify where duplication could be removed and existing schemes and processes could be made more efficient.
• Identify what potential cost benefits could be realised by the industry.
• Identify other potential benefits to assist in building a sustainable supply chain for the future.
This project has produced a report that identifies the potential savings available to the industry; the actions needed to realise them; and the barriers to achieving those savings.  The report also prioritises the improvement opportunities in terms of realisable benefits.  A significant opportunity can be seen in reducing the number of assurance process stages that suppliers have to go through.  This could be done by using a common, risk-based approach, and/or by wider recognition of existing assurance scheme compliance activities.
This work has been the first stage in a larger process and has provided the evidence for the industry to decide how the next steps can be implemented, and savings start to be realised, by the RISAS working group.

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