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Control Plans and Process Flow Diagrams: What is the Difference?


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Control Plans and Process Flow Diagrams

I need some more education

What is the difference between a Control Plan and a Process Flow Diagram?

I think I am on the right track, but I need some assurance.

A Process Flow Diagram is like a flow chart showing all the manufacturing steps required to make a part.

A Control Plan provides detail on how each of these steps will be monitored and controled.

Am I on the right track here?

Thanks all.


Bill Ryan - 2007

Hi Carol,

The "natural" order of the PPAP documents is:
a) Process Flow Diagram which lists (and numerates) each
processing step in the production sequence;
b) PFMEA which investigates all POTENTIAL Failure modes,
Causes, and Controls at each step;
c) The Control Plan which goes into detail concerning the Product
and Process Controls listed in each processing step of the

Hope this helps some?


Cooking School

Here’s the quirky way I think of it. Let’s bake a cake. A Control Plan is the recipe card. It tells you all the ingredients, measurements, time and cooking temperatures, etc, that if followed will give you a good cake every time (not like the ones mom used to make that were a bit flat). Process Flow is simply a visual representation of that process from start to finish, without much detail and IMHO is 100 % worthless. If you do the FMEA right, you walk the process from start to finish anyway. Then you generate the CP from the good FMEA,,,……… Just another worthless AIAG document that again confirms to me that they get kickbacks from the paper companies. :bigwave:


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a better understanding now

Bill, Al and noboxwine

Thanks for you great explanations. Certainly makes more sense now. Especially yours, noboxwine...great anaology. And as a real outsider to all this, it does seem a bit repetative, but.....gotta give the customer what they want.


as a real outsider to all this
Come on Carol, you've been hanging around the Cove (and participating) long enough to be as much of an insider as any of us. It is just no one knows it all, but together we come close!!! :cool:


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I guess your right..I've been hanging out here for a while...but this is my first foray into PPAP...hence the outsider comment. Thanks for the uplift!


Manoj Mathur

Quite Involved in Discussions
Besides the above points A Control plan (In my Company we call as Process Control Standards) essentialy contain the following:

a) General data
- control plan number,
- issue date, and revision date, if any,
- customer information (see customer requirements),
- organization's name/site designation,
- part number(s),
- part name/description,
- engineering change level,
- phase covered (prototype, pre-launch, production),
- key contact,
- part/process step number,
- process name/operation description.
b) Product control
- product-related special characteristics,
- other characteristics for control (number, product or process),
- specification/tolerance.
c) Process control
- process parameters,
- process-related special characteristics,
- machines, jigs, fixtures, tools for manufacturing.
d) Methods
- evaluation measurement technique., -error-proofing.,
- sample size and frequency, -control method.
b) Reaction plan and corrective actions
- reaction plan (include or reference),
- corrective action.

Al Dyer

I just want to say that I am in love with Carol, and do have a processs flow plan to get to my goal!!!!!

Good posts, and good luck Carol! :lick:


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Al Dyer said:

I just want to say that I am in love with Carol, and do have a processs flow plan to get to my goal!!!!!

Good posts, and good luck Carol! :lick:

I bet you say that to all the girls!

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