Defining Customer Property - Specifications, templates, patterns from customers

K

kglennie - 2003

#1
I have a question regarding customer property. I currently work for a foam manufacturer. They receive specifications from customers regarding the sizes and patterns needed for fabrication of those products. In our initial audit, we used customer property as an exclusion. However now it is said that it could possibly fall under this requirement. Can you give me your opinion? The customer does not want the patterns back, we use them as a template and once worn out we request new one....how do I deal with this requirement if it is customer property?

Thanks
 
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J

Jimmy Olson

#2
Hello and welcome to the cove :bigwave:

If the procedure is to request a new one from the customer once it is worn, that could be the basis for your customer property policy. The templates should be controlled anyway since that is what you are building to.

You might work with the customer to develop something or have them review your policy. It could be as simple as you recieve property from the customer at which time you become responsible for it. Once it is worn you should have some sort of procedure for disposing of it and specify that the customer is notified through a request for a new one.

You can work in a few more details, but hopefully this gives you a starting point
 

Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
Staff member
Admin
#3
Typically items such as prints, which in your case I would equate to "sizes and patterns needed for fabrication", are considered customer property. I would want evidence otherwise (such as a written agreement) to agree you could exclude them.

That is - unless ownership of patterns and such is defined differently as an 'industrty standard' . Not working in the specific industry so I have to 'cage' my response.

Just ask 1 question: Can I give this to someone or some company without consent of my customer? If not, your customer probably owns them.
 
J

JaySturgeon

#4
Customer Property

I agree with Marc:
"Just ask 1 question: Can I give this to someone or some company without consent of my customer? If not, your customer probably owns them."

That is the criteria I have always used to define customer owned property.

Jay
 
R

Randy Stewart

#5
Fwiw

Here's my spin on this:
If the patterns are not returned to the customer (disposable item) their cost is rolled into the piece price (the customer isn't making them for free), therefore you have bought them and they are your property. I agree that there needs to be some type of control over them, if this was something I had to set up I would have it in my inventory as disposable tooling.
Now this all depends on what your deliverables are. What I have seen with foam patterns is that they are a guide, a reference, only.
They serve a function similar to a NC Mill cutter, a cut off tool, etc. While they have a say in the final product, they are the tool that makes the final product.
Just an idea.
 

gpainter

Quite Involved in Discussions
#6
kglennie said:
I have a question regarding customer property. I currently work for a foam manufacturer. They receive specifications from customers regarding the sizes and patterns needed for fabrication of those products. In our initial audit, we used customer property as an exclusion. However now it is said that it could possibly fall under this requirement. Can you give me your opinion? The customer does not want the patterns back, we use them as a template and once worn out we request new one....how do I deal with this requirement if it is customer property?

Thanks
This is the Cusomer's property. They also need control since they are your specifications. Like a sample. Based on the info read from your post.
 

Mike S.

Happy to be Alive
Trusted Information Resource
#7
Marc said:
Typically items such as prints, which in your case I would equate to "sizes and patterns needed for fabrication", are considered customer property. I would want evidence otherwise (such as a written agreement) to agree you could exclude them.

That is - unless ownership of patterns and such is defined differently as an 'industrty standard' . Not working in the specific industry so I have to 'cage' my response.

Just ask 1 question: Can I give this to someone or some company without consent of my customer? If not, your customer probably owns them.
Interesting. I never considered drawings/spec. sheets, etc. from a customer under the aegis of "customer supplied property", I only controlled it under doc. control. My customer supplied property procedure only addresses raw materials, tooling, test fixtures, etc. but does not mention documentation. Since I can put a customer drawing on a copy machine and make 50 copies of it in a few seconds, it seems uniquely different than other types of customer property. But maybe I need to rethink this.

How many other folks out there address customer drawings/spec's. etc. (paper or electronic files) under the aegis of customer supplied property?
 

gpainter

Quite Involved in Discussions
#8
Mike S. said:
Interesting. I never considered drawings/spec. sheets, etc. from a customer under the aegis of "customer supplied property", I only controlled it under doc. control. My customer supplied property procedure only addresses raw materials, tooling, test fixtures, etc. but does not mention documentation. Since I can put a customer drawing on a copy machine and make 50 copies of it in a few seconds, it seems uniquely different than other types of customer property. But maybe I need to rethink this.

How many other folks out there address customer drawings/spec's. etc. (paper or electronic files) under the aegis of customer supplied property?
Take a look at the note under 7.5.4
 
#9
Hi KGLennie: Welcome to the Cove. :bigwave:


gpainter said:
Take a look at the note under 7.5.4
gpainter is right. The note says it all: As a matter of fact, we have a procedure about how to handle business secrets = Intellectual property.

Our customers would most certainly not be happy if we showed their specs to their competitors. Thus, what the procedure is saying is quite basically: Information about a customer concerns only the customer and ourselves. It is simply a matter of confidence.

/Claes
 

Mike S.

Happy to be Alive
Trusted Information Resource
#10
gpainter said:
Take a look at the note under 7.5.4
Yeah, I saw that note. But CAN is the operative word IMO, it does not say SHALL.

Under 4.2.3 (f) if I control the distribution of customer drawings/spec's. as required by the customer or, in the event they don't say anything, according to my internal policy, I figure I'd not need to mention it under 7.5.4. In my industry, even doing work for the DOD and defense contractors, I never had a customer demand that I not copy their drawing or that it remain locked-up, only that I not disclose it to outside parties as per a standard NDA. So, we just made sure we did not have them laying out if a visitor was in the plant.

Are y'all saying that I MUST address customer spec's/drawings (paper or electronic) under 7.5.4?
 
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