A frequent question account managers receive is how to employ an inspection strategy to identify issues early and continue to ensure that product meets specifications. Most agree that the tangible and intangible costs associated with poor quality support a preemptive strategy. The answer isn’t necessarily a simple one due to the variances involved in product specific requirements. But, a general method of attack is suggested here:
Inspection Plan Development
A good plan is only as good as its foundation, so a comprehensive and detailed product specification is critical to the success of the overall strategy. Pro QC often assists clients with this documentation creation and also uses it internally to direct engineers on-site. A good plan incorporates anything that will affect the salability and performance of the product.
Pro QC inspects first-article samples prior to volume production. That means the product specifications are being met and reengineering won’t be necessary at an inconvenient point of time in the future.
These on-site inspections evaluate samples of your products selected during the manufacturing process. It confirms the quality of your product and allows any necessary changes to be addressed early on. Incorporating these inspections reduces rework time and costs.
During a pre-shipment inspection, engineers verify that the finished goods confirm to your specifications. A representative sample is chosen randomly from the lot using a sampling plan such as ANSI Z1.4.
The criteria is used to determine sampling levels and accept/reject determinations.
Inspection schedules are dependent on factors such past performance, so costs associated with preventative action are also reduced as performance becomes predictable and/or stable. Continuous improvement and consistent results means investing in quality throughout the process and avoiding associated risks and cost in the future.