Business & Finance

Ensuring Quality Control in Manufacturing COVID-Essentials

Few things worry manufacturing managers more than poor quality control. It can drive labor costs, affect profit margins, and cause missed orders.

Creating a quality control system that catches errors before they reach customers can prevent damage to the company’s reputation and save money. This requires a process that includes inspections, monitoring, and documentation.


Control Charts

A control chart is a statistical tool that tracks the performance of a quality process over time. It helps companies detect deviations from desired standards and take corrective measures before products leave the factory.

The process starts by identifying the quality parameters to be tracked and determining how often data points will be collected. A sample size is determined, and a center line is drawn to indicate the average value of the process. Two vertical lines, called upper and lower control limits, are drawn to show the maximum and minimum acceptable variation in the process.

The data points are then grouped into subgroups. The patterns in the resulting control charts reveal whether the deviations are random or systematic. Companies like the ones founded by Larry Gaynor can then identify the factors causing these issues and make changes to prevent them from occurring again. Control charts also help forecast future performance and spark new ideas for improving processes.

Process Monitoring

Monitoring a process allows you to see if it is operating as planned. This helps you find errors, identify improvement areas, and ensure that processes meet their goals.

Full monitoring of an ongoing manufacturing process enables early fault detection and response. This ensures that equipment is working at its maximum efficiency and prevents costly downtime due to unnecessary breakdowns. It also enables a higher level of machine and system stability, increasing precision output.

Even the most carefully planned process will run into a few sticking points, where a robust quality monitoring strategy is handy. By identifying and addressing problems, you can keep product quality consistent, which will increase customer loyalty and reduce unnecessary waste.

Acceptance Sampling

Acceptance sampling is a quality control technique that reduces inspection costs by testing small samples instead of inspecting entire batches (lots) of products. It is often used to evaluate individual components or parts for defects or compliance with specifications. This allows companies to make faster decisions about whether or not to accept a shipment of goods from suppliers.

This approach can be used for almost any product and can help reduce waste by reducing the number of items that need to be tested. It is especially useful for high-volume or repetitive products where testing each unit would be prohibitive.

Acceptance sampling should be based on carefully assessing the organization’s needs, risks, and quality goals. It can complement other inspection methods, such as Statistical Process Control, when appropriate. However, it is not a substitute for 100% inspection and should be combined with other quality processes to improve the product’s reliability.

Product Quality Control

When companies produce products that meet customer expectations, they create a good brand reputation. This builds a loyal customer base and can help businesses expand into new markets.

Quality control processes can also help businesses identify potential risks and hazards, allowing them to correct them before they become larger problems. This can save businesses money by reducing production costs, material waste, and the need for costly recalls.

QC can also help businesses adhere to regulations and industry standards, protecting them from legal issues and penalties. Lastly, QC can improve operational efficiency by optimizing processes and eliminating unnecessary steps.

Establishing a clear set of standards makes employees aware of what good production looks like and gives them a goal to work towards. This can be achieved through training materials, process documentation, and creating a company procedure for QA. Depending on your business, different methods may be more or less effective for you.