Control Plans vs. Operator Instructions



I am seeking info about how to make minor changes to process characteristics that are not "key characteristics" without having to obtain Ford approval every time. To my knowledge, the Control Plan needs to have Ford approval for all revisions. We want to make the Control Plan as detailed as possible but not so detailed it will be a struggle to operate. Is it possible to list all characteristics on the Control Plan and only need Ford approval for "key characteristics"?

Al Dyer

If you are making a change to a characteristic it is probably driven by the customer. Even if it non-critical it still has a bearing on another process down the line, thats why it is on the print.

Please tell me if I am wrong.

If there is a change to a control plan I'm sure the customer would want to at least know and have the chance to sign-off on the change.

What if a supplier of yours started to change characteristics on the control plan that was approved by your company?

Would you at least want to know?

Any more detail for us to base a response?

Al Dyer

Sorry, didn't fully answer the question.

QS-9000 page 67 Paragraph 3 clearly states that control plans and FMEA's shall be approved and revisions shall be approved and obtained.

Just think about good business practice and how easy it is to comply with some of these requirements if you have a good system in place.

Good luck, and any other opinions?


One question comes to mind. Does Ford initially approve the control plans? If they require that then you are probably required to have them re-approve any changes. JMHO


Al Dyer

My guess would be that they are not approving the revised control plan as opposed to a new warrant. In an instance when the control plan is changed, I would expect approval from the customer. This approval usually comes from the part warrant. If they approve the warrant without looking at the new control plan that is their problem, but they can make it your problem very quickly!!!


Hello everyone. Long time reader, first time poster. I might be able to help shed some light on the subject matter. Or at least share my experience with this subject.

Our largest final customer is Ford, we may be anywhere from Tier 1 to Tier 10 on any one of our products depending on the application. Unless the product in question has a Control Item (inverted delta) on the design record, signatory approval is not necessary. This is explained in more detail in the AIAG PPAP manual, page 24.

We literally have a couple hundred control plans with Ford as the customer. If we had to get a signature everytime we made a change to the control plans, many very bad things would happen to many very good people (myself included). Besides, trying to get a Ford engineer or STA to sign off on any document might imply accountability. Good luck.

Of course, my whole point is moot if your STA is requiring you to get the control plans approved in the first place. Then you're stuck.
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