The origins of the 8-D system actually goes back many years.
The US Government first ‘standardized’ the system in Mil-Std-1520 “Corrective Action and Disposition System for Nonconforming Material”
Mil-Std-1520 - First released: 1974
Last Revision was C of 1986
Canceled in 1995
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While Ford has made the 8-D system popular in automotive manufacturing, it is not a new system or, by any means, a Ford system. From Mil-Std-1520C:
1.1 Purpose. This standard sets forth the requirements for a cost-effective corrective action and disposition systems for nonconforming material. It defines requirements relative to the interface between the contractor and the contract administration office on nonconforming material. This standard sets forth the DOD contracting activity requirements for a properly constituted Material Review Board. The primary purposes of the corrective action and disposition system are to identify and correct causes of non-conformances, prevent the recurrence of wasteful nonconforming material, reduce the cost of manufacturing inefficiency, and foster quality and productivity improvement.