Our 7 accredited branches in Gauteng and the Western Cape, Eastern Cape and Free State are now joined by an accredited site laboratory, a first for Roadlab.
Roadlab's First Accredited Site Laboratory
On 11 May 2022 our N2 Nqadu site laboratory received its ISO/IEC 17025 accreditation.
We spoke to Senior Site Laboratory Manager Mr. Lethabo P Chuene about this fantastic achievement.
Tell us about your time with Roadlab.
I started my career as an assistant materials tester around Ga-Chuene, Maratapelo Village where I was born and raised. I applied for a senior materials tester position at Roadlab in 2010, but was hired as a junior manager instead. Since then I've worked on 5 major SANRAL projects, produced 6 managers and served on more site labs than any other Roadlab manager.
How long have you managed the N2 Nqadu site lab?
I established the site as the Senior Lab Manager in October 2020 and built my own team of 26 members.
Tell me about the process of getting accredited.
The process has been tough but very informative. I would be misinforming you if I said it was easy. We did comprehensive planning, strategy and reviews.
Our first fundamental step was establishing a team that would appreciate the importance of getting accreditated as a site laboratory, since this was a new initiative to support SANRAL.
Were you confident that you would get the accreditation?
Based on my experience managing site laboratories, I was confident that with the team I had established we were going to be successful.
My lab manager, Mr. Siyabulela Mafilika, is well-informed and knowledgeable on site administration and the ISO/IEC 17025 management framework. He and our Trainee Manager Mr. Mohau Bosaletse went the extra mile to make this happen.
At times I had concerns about the time frame, simply because we had to get the accreditation within 6 months from the commencement of the project, but I was still entirely confident that we would get the accreditation.
This is the first time a local site laboratory has been accredited in the country. What does that mean to you?
This is one of my biggest achievements, and the acknowledgement it comes with is so overwhelming.
This means a lot to me as an individual, in my career and in the history of Roadlab. I’m very proud of my supporting structure, the co-managers , the head office quality team, the head office site labs management team and the Directors.
My sincere gratitude to the N2 Nqadu site lab team, the Roadlab quality, health and safety teams, the entire Roadlab family. And of course my lovely wife, Mrs Joyce Retshephile Chuene, for her support through my career.
How does your team feel about this achievement?
The accreditation is a true reflection of the extensive hard work that goes into each project, this recognition is true validation for the site lab. The team is excited, proud and delighted.
Can you tell us about your team's achievement?
The following team members respectively represented us on the following departments.
Do you think more accredited site labs would be beneficial to our clients?
Yes, and it benefits the labs as well. Clients expect high quality materials and service, and accreditation helps reduce risks and improves outcomes.
The preparation of the accreditation assessment itself means setting up an internationally-recognized standard of quality based on ISO/IEC 17025. Within the facility itself, it promotes communication and skill development while identifying strengths and gaps in your QMS.
I definitely expect to see more accredited site labs in the future.
Congratulations to Lethabo and the N2 Nqadu team. Roadlab expects to accredit 3 more site laboratories in Limpopo and the Eastern Cape in the next two months.
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