No response to CAR's - Supplier refuses to answer a corrective action

D

dbulak

#1
What can be done when a supplier refuses to answer a corrective action? They just will not repond.
 
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D

dbulak

#3
Not really bigger,but do supply some unique products. What would an auditor say if I close a CAR that said they will not respond. Still have to keep buying from them.
 

DannyK

Trusted Information Resource
#4
I would keep as evidence the number of attempts made in order to get the supplier to address the problem.
You can also make sure that your purchasing department communicates the information to the supplier's sales department.
You can also ask to speak to the General Manager or President of the company and ask for their cooperation.

If you complain loud enough, you usually will get results.

Danny
 
J

Jonell

#5
Having the same problem

dbulak,

You are not alone. We're having the same problem with one of our suppliers. 3 CAR's have been issued to this supplier, with no response to any of them. And we can't go any higher up in their company; the CAR's are being issued to the owner/president of the company. This company was customer recommended, but sadly they have no QMS of any kind, as is evidenced in the quality of product that they ship to us. We are in the process of recommending to our customer that the job be pulled from their shop and placed with another of our chosing. However, that doesn't seem to be an option for you. I have, in the past, directed accounting to withhold payment to them until I get CAR's answered, and that seemed to work. I did however, send out a letter to them first, notifying them of my intent to do so. Sometimes, the letter alone is enough.


Best of luck!
Jonell
 
J

Jim Howe

#6
Some time back when I was working as a young inexperienced QA Engineer at a major aerospace firm I received my first lesson regarding CAR's from an old beloved purchasing agent. It goes something like this.

1) When a CAR is written it must be forwarded to purchasing. Only purchasing can communicate with the supplier.

2) Purchasing then writes a letter to the supplier demanding corrective action regarding the CAR.

3) Purchasing gives the supplier 60 days to respond.

4) After 60 days with no response a followup letter is written giving another 30 days to respond.

5) In 30 days a response is obtained from the supplier and it usually contained a statement requesting clarification of the issues with an additional couple of specific questions.

6) Of course now these questions have to be answered and it all takes time.

The key here is time (the purchasing gentlemen said to me) they get 90 days, we take 60 days, they get another 90 days, etc. and guess what, before you realize it the contract is over and everyone has forgotten that there was never a corrective action taken just a bunch of letters sent back and forth.

I of course was absolutely dumbstruck but came to learn that in huge corporations this was the "norm". This of course was done because no one else in the world made this particular part and this part was critical to the project.

What do you think, would this approach work today? God, was I young then, i am surprized that I can remember that far back. :lmao:
 
T

Tom W

#7
In a perfect world - they would no longer be your supplier. However that is not always the solution. If they supply you with truely one of a kind parts or service then you are "stuck" with them. it would then IMO, take a longer time to convince them that you are an improtant part of their business and only want to help the relationship improve. If that does not work hit them were they will take notice and withhold payment until they answer. if it was a serious enough isse to warrant a CAR, then they can wait for their money untell that issue is resolved.
 
D

David Hartman

#8
If your company is willing to continue putting up with the level of quality received from this supplier, then simply close out the CAR with a statement to the effect that this supplier's current quality level is acceptable as is, and drop the issue (do not continue sending more CAR's to the supplier and shooting yourself in the foot).

But, if their quality level is not acceptable (it impacts your ability to meet schedule or your quality requirements) then by all means let your supplier know (the suggestions of others here are quite good).

I for one am a proponent of speaking directly to the head honcho and letting them know of my companies displeasure (and the possibility of seeking out another supplier - whether you really are or not).
 

Wes Bucey

Prophet of Profit
#9
ddhartma said:
If your company is willing to continue putting up with the level of quality received from this supplier, then simply close out the CAR with a statement to the effect that this supplier's current quality level is acceptable as is, and drop the issue (do not continue sending more CAR's to the supplier and shooting yourself in the foot).

But, if their quality level is not acceptable (it impacts your ability to meet schedule or your quality requirements) then by all means let your supplier know (the suggestions of others here are quite good).

I for one am a proponent of speaking directly to the head honcho and letting them know of my companies displeasure (and the possibility of seeking out another supplier - whether you really are or not).
Am I gettin mellow in my senior years? Probably.

I experienced this scenario [unanswered CAR] dozens of times over the years.
As I grew more experienced and got grayer, I realized the issue had two sides.
The primary reason a supplier ignores a CAR is because the customer did not work out the scenario as part of the contract in the first place. This is particularly true where a customer orders a proprietary item from a single source supplier. If the product is not custom made to the customer's design, asking for a CAR (as opposed to mere replacement for faulty merchandise) is unreasonable.

The other side of the coin is that the supplier may be absolutely incapable of addressing ANY CAR because the internal QMS doesn't have a mechanism for this. This is particularly true of model and prototype shops used to "tinkering" with products and processes and unwilling to waste time completing paperwork for a small production run (include machining job shops in this category.)

The customer may be so hidebound in filling in blanks on its check sheets, it doesn't stop to determine whther the CAR is one aimed at a systemic problem or a one-time glitch. One late delivery may not be reasonable cause for a CAR.

Too frequently, issuers of CARs don't have a true picture of the real purpose of a CAR. It is not a replacement for normal communication between customer and supplier. Suppliers are remiss and trigger CARs when they know they will be late on delivery, but do not proactively alert the customer. Customers are remiss when they trigger a CAR without a phone call or email asking for an explanation of the perceived nonconformance.

Customers often issue CARs to suppliers that are actually in error. I have seen instances of customers issuing CARs because of a perceived product nonconformance only to later discover their incoming inspection was flawed and the product was actually perfect.

Bottom line:
Try a little tenderness. Problems between customers and suppliers are not resolved at incoming inspection level - they need to be escalated to the "suits" who get paid to resolve issues, not to detect them. Before escalating the problem, try a phone call to see what the real issue is.
 
#10
Good thread, all :agree1:

dbulak said:
Not really bigger,but do supply some unique products. What would an auditor say if I close a CAR that said they will not respond. Still have to keep buying from them.
Ok, they do not respond. Good advice has been given and I see nothing much to add (except maybe the option to return the parts), but I have another question...

Of course they should respond to the CAR, no question about it... Now: The generally accepted reason to issue CAR's is to get rid of the problem and it's root cause. Is the problem still there?

/Claes
 
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