Entela Registers Clarion to TS 16949


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Clarion Technologies, Inc. is a leader among automotive suppliers in North America and the world with ISO/TS 16949 certification. The company received their certificate today. ISO/TS 16949 is a brand new quality standard which specifically addresses the requirements of the automotive industries in the United States and Europe.

The ISO/TS 16949 common automotive quality system requirement is based on ISO 9001: 1994, AVSQ (Italian), EAQF (French), QS-9000 (U.S.) and VDA 6.1 (German). The standard is the end result of months of effort to standardize the different countries' automotive industry requirements. The International Automotive Task Force (IATF) members jointly developed the standard.

The new standard does not replace previous standards, but represents a preferred option for suppliers that will improve products and processes and provide additional confidence for global sourcing.

``Clarion Technologies is pleased to be a leader in the receipt of ISO/TS 16949 certification,'' said Bill Beckman, President of Clarion Technologies. ``The IATF established this new global standard to meet the quality requirements of the French, German and Italian automotive industries as well as the Big Three in the United States. Qualifying for ISO/TS 16949 allows us to be more efficient and effective in providing products and services in not only the automotive industry, but for our other customers as well.

``ISO/TS 16949 is an automotive quality systems standard, but this certificate is an indicator of the quality standards Clarion Technologies maintains for all of our customers, including those in the heavy truck, furniture, consumer goods and product development markets,'' Mr. Beckman added.

David Tinsley, Quality Operating Systems Manager for Clarion, noted that the process of achieving ISO/TS 16949 has been another valuable experience for the company. ``Three years ago Entela was asked to add additional audit hours to our upcoming surveillance audit. As a true partner in the supply chain, they did just that. That one audit created an internal paradigm shift that led us to focus on a system that has become the personality of the company. Since that audit three years ago, we have re-defined virtually every element within our system, with the philosophy of keeping everything as simple, focused and fun as possible. In return, the system has given us significant improvements in every one of our 14 Quality Operating System Measureables.''

``We have strengthened our internal audit efforts to the point that we are extremely focused upon our internal and external customer expectations,'' Tinsley continued. ``This has tremendously impacted our improvement; however, we have only scratched the surface. We are just beginning to realize the potential of our efforts.''

The ISO/TS 16949 certification was awarded to the company's plant on Fairplains Avenue in Greenville, Michigan. It is the company's intent to pursue ISO/TS 16949 certification for its other manufacturing locations as well. ``Plans are already in place to invite the auditors in to begin the certification process at our other plants and our Tech Center,'' Mr. Beckman said. ``The overriding systems goal is for all facilities including the Tech Center to be registered by January 1st, 2001.'' The Clarion-Greenville plant is one of six manufacturing facilities operated by Clarion Technologies in Ohio, Michigan and South Carolina. The company also operates a technical design center in Jenison, Michigan.

Entela, Inc., QSRD conducted the ISO/TS 16949 audit for Clarion. Entela is the first of an anticipated 31 firms to be approved as registrars, compared to 165 for QS-9000. Management Solutions Group, a Grand Rapids consulting firm, assisted the Greenville facility in preparation.

``This system is designed to help global suppliers meet tough standards without having to go through certification one country at a time,'' said Bill Vosburg, vice president of registration services for Entela. ``The IATF issued a report announcing that ISO/TS 16949 will be accepted as the international equivalent of a host of other standards now being used. The IATF said they do not intend to replace these others standards, but want to eliminate multiple registrations wherever possible.''

The new standards include elements additional to the requirements for QS-9000 certification. For example, ISO/TS 16949 standards make quality- responsible personnel's authority to stop production a requirement, rather than a suggestion as in QS-9000. The new standard also introduces ``product realization'' to address the process of designing, planning and delivering products that meet customer requirements.

``We congratulate Clarion Technologies for this accomplishment,'' said Margaret Jenkins, Operations Support Manager with Entela, Inc., QSRD. ``Clarion had a strong QS-9000 based quality system in place, which made the transition to ISO/TS 16949 certification an easy one.''

Clarion Technologies is planning an ISO/TS 16949 certification celebration at the Greenville-Fairplains location on Tuesday, June 6. ``We invite the community and the industry to come and celebrate with us,'' Mr. Beckman said. ``ISO/TS 16949 certification is a great accomplishment. We challenge others in the industry to join us in pursuing this standard, which will result in higher quality products world-wide.''

With its six manufacturing locations and technical design center, Clarion Technologies' total operating space is approximately 700,000 square feet. The manufacturing operations include 150 injection molding machines ranging in size from 50 to 5000 tons of clamping force. The company's headquarters are located in Holland, Michigan.

SOURCE: Clarion Technologies, Inc.


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Anyone know how many companies have registered since this 'long ago' post?
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