Tag: supplier

A New Year for Quality

As 2016 gets started, there’s reason to believe it will be a good year for quality.

We reached out and asked our clients and partners what their quality goals are for the year. We received some positive and reassuring feedback.

Common quality objectives and a few helpful resources include:

  • Establish (or improve) a supplier evaluation program. 
  • Utilize existing inspection data to identify trends and make improvements.
    • Check out a previous blog post where we use inspection data and a fishbone diagram to determine root cause.
    • Follow-up when opportunities for improvement exist.  For example, consider a process audit when consistent defect trends are noted.
  • Evaluate new suppliers.

ISO 14001:2015 – Who Needs Environmental Management?

aa6efe67-5c6a-4d07-862e-1cb1ab7145a4-largeThe quality industry is buzzing this week as the International Organization for Standardization released the latest revision of the ISO 14001 environmental management standard.

“ISO 14001:2015 is an internationally agreed standard that sets out the requirements for an environmental management system. It helps organizations improve their environmental performance through more efficient use of resources and reduction of waste, gaining a competitive advantage and the trust of stakeholders”

Notable revisions per the news release include:

  • A greater commitment from leadership
  • An increased alignment with strategic direction
  • Greater protection for the environment, with a focus on proactive initiatives
  • More effective communication, driven through a communications strategy
  • Life-cycle thinking, considering each stage of a product or service, from development to end-of-life

With the latest release, ISO discussed the benefits of incorporating the standard.  Described as a way of helping organizations identify, manage, monitor and control their environmental issues in a holistic manner, issues considered include:

When do you switch suppliers?

supplier-quality-devoI’ve never heard the process of switching suppliers described as easy.  People may say that it “went smoothly” or “could have gone worse,” but the reality is that it’s not easy.  Because of this, many organizations delay the process and experience increased costs and consumer dissatisfaction as a result.

Questions to consider:

Ask us: The 5W1H of Product Quality Control

One of the most commonly used quality tools is 5W1H, “a method of asking questions about a process or a problem taken up for improvement.” This socratic questioning method is said to be rooted in Rudyard Kipling’s poem:

I keep six faithful serving men

(They taught me all I knew);

Their names are What and Why and When

And How and Where and Who.

Using 5W1H, we have developed a list of the most common questions we receive from inquiries regarding their product quality control initiatives.  Ask us for more information, and let us know if you have any questions to add.

5W1H_PQC_QC

Five Ways to Ensure Quality Manufacturing – Sourcing Success

Whether you’re sourcing abroad, or from a manufacturer down the street, similar issues with product quality, shipment delays, cost and safety concerns, etc. still apply.  To mitigate the quality risks and cost involved in sourcing, we recommend five actions that have been proven successful throughout the three decades of experience we have working with clients and suppliers around the world.

1 – Audit Potential & Existing Suppliers 

To help ensure that potential or existing suppliers deliver high-quality products, operate efficiently, and support continuous improvement, process surveys and factory audits are performed.

From supplier capability and qualification to process control and quality system audits, there are a wide range of options.