Customer Designated vs. Customer Approved? Definitions

chinadaddy02

Involved In Discussions
#1
Had my 1st preliminary assessment last week and it went ok. Had a question about a finding in my Purchasing area,

What is the difference between a customer designated vs. customer approved supplier? Is it, for a customer designated supplier, if a a customer says to use a supplier but it is not on our approved supplier list, then it is ok to use the supplier the one time for the particular project? Then for a customer approved the customer wants us to use the supplier and we would put it on our approved supplier list, but still maintain the supplier as any other supplier (periodic on-site audits)?

Will probably have more questions in the future.
 
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R

ralphsulser

#2
Re: Customer designated vs. customer approved?

1st question-yes, and make sure you get a customer authorized document stating so with the details of duration and/or frequency, and make sure it is signed and dated.
2nd question-yes, even though customer approved, supplier needs to meet your customer approval list criteria unless waived in writing by you customer as above.
 
D

Duke Okes

#3
Here's my interpretation, although your customer/industry may vary:

Customer designated means you didn't have to go through a selection process. However, they should still be on your approved supplier list, and you should still review their performance (and report results to them as well as to customer)

Customer approved means you may have selected them, but customer maintained right to approve/deny.
 
K

KwalityWonk

#4
I tend to agree with Duke. Customer designated in Aerospace often means a single source of supply for a given product or process. Sources may often have to go thru qualification processes in order to manufacture a product or perform a process. Proprietary products and processes are often specified on Customer Blueprints, and while the specification may be an industry standard spec, the customer prefers one supplier over another based on design or validation testing. I believe the point that should be taken from the clause is that you are ultimately responsible for the quality of the product regardless of whether you you used customer directed / approved processors. And yes, they would need to be on your approved supplier list, but the controls you have in place for Customer Directed Suppliers may be as simple as 'Customer Directed', and validating the product or process at receiving or final inspection, to ensure you get what you payed for.
 

Ajit Basrur

Staff member
Admin
#5
Yes Duke is right - customer designated means that the customer goes through the selection process, audits and approves the supplier. After having done this, they mandate their supplier to use this qualified "sub-supplier".
 
L

lrsiyer

#6
I go with Duke. Designated means already verified and designated to the down tiers.
Approved - No need to explain.
 

Jim Wynne

Staff member
Admin
#7
Perhaps having the wording of the clause in question would help because I'm not familiar with the standard, but I'm confused. How could a customer designate (which I interpret to mean "mandate") a supplier if that supplier were not approved? :confused:
 

somashekar

Staff member
Super Moderator
#8
Had my 1st preliminary assessment last week and it went ok. Had a question about a finding in my Purchasing area,

What is the difference between a customer designated vs. customer approved supplier? Is it, for a customer designated supplier, if a a customer says to use a supplier but it is not on our approved supplier list, then it is ok to use the supplier the one time for the particular project? Then for a customer approved the customer wants us to use the supplier and we would put it on our approved supplier list, but still maintain the supplier as any other supplier (periodic on-site audits)?

Will probably have more questions in the future.
Please let us see the finding issued as it is worded, if this concerns to customer approved supplier.
There is no difference as far as a QMS application goes. Some say designated and some other say approved. Perhaps you are holding to both and now confused, trying to find the difference.
 

Wes Bucey

Prophet of Profit
#9
FWIW:

Whether the customer provides a list of "approved" suppliers or a single "designated" supplier is immaterial in terms of whether the material from such supplier may be incorporated in a component, package or kit, or assembly your organization delivers to the customer. You need a written process or procedure to address this situation.

As a supplier, the situation should have been covered and signed off during Contract Review.

In terms of "approved" suppliers list provided by a customer, your organization may pick and choose which of them to approve and use yourself. The routine for your organization should include the same approval criteria you would use for any random supplier picked out of a telephone directory.

In terms of "designated" supplier
dictated [mandated] by your customer, you should ask (during Contract Review) whether the customer guarantees the quality and service of such designated supplier. If not, why not? Despite the guarantee or lack thereof, you still need to assure the quality of the product or service BEFORE installing it in the product you deliver to your customer. This is accomplished in one of two ways:

  1. Through laborious incoming inspection before sending product to your production line.
  2. Through approving the supplier's internal methods in the same way you approve ANY supplier with whom you want or have a "dock-to-stock" agreement which bypasses your own costly incoming inspection.
IMPORTANT NOTE:
For "customer supplied" product, you definitely need to cover (in Contract Review)

  1. who pays for incoming inspection, if necessary?
  2. what criteria will be used to determine whether customer supplied product is conforming enough to be installed in the product you deliver?
  3. who pays for delays caused by nonconforming product supplied by customer?
  4. what are the repercussions if "hidden nonconformities" of customer supplied product are discovered AFTER the product is in the field? (This is occasioned by a case where a customer inadvertently supplied counterfeit bolts which had not been properly heat treated and subsequently broke in the field, causing consequential damages for the end users of the equipment. The supplier who installed the bolts was limited to a visual inspection of the "ID lugs" on the bolt [counterfeit], designating the hardness category.)
Had my 1st preliminary assessment last week and it went ok. Had a question about a finding in my Purchasing area,

What is the difference between a customer designated vs. customer approved supplier? Is it, for a customer designated supplier, if a a customer says to use a supplier but it is not on our approved supplier list, then it is ok to use the supplier the one time for the particular project? Then for a customer approved the customer wants us to use the supplier and we would put it on our approved supplier list, but still maintain the supplier as any other supplier (periodic on-site audits)?

Will probably have more questions in the future.
Here's my interpretation, although your customer/industry may vary:

Customer designated means you didn't have to go through a selection process. However, they should still be on your approved supplier list, and you should still review their performance (and report results to them as well as to customer)

Customer approved means you may have selected them, but customer maintained right to approve/deny.
Please let us see the finding issued as it is worded, if this concerns to customer approved supplier.
There is no difference as far as a QMS application goes. Some say designated and some other say approved. Perhaps you are holding to both and now confused, trying to find the difference.
 
Q

qmanager2012

#10
Hello, I have the same situation and trying to come up with a form/document that I would send to my customer to have them sign stating they have approved the supplier that they are directing us to procure from. We are ISO13485 certified (Medical). Can anyone provide a sample document? Thank you
 
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