PPAP Submission NOT required by customer... but... Do I have to do it anyway?

Help me understand what I have just been told of this week:

An automotive customer, with an automotive part, waives the requirement of having to do a PPAP submission... However, I am told that, by "rule" I am still required to perform all of the necessary operations and have them on file... otherwise, I will have a serious nonconformance come audit time.

Now... try to ignore the issue of whether or not conducting the Control Plans, FMEA, Capability Studies, and all the rest are value-added steps.

I want to know if what I have been told is true. I have always operated under the guise that, if the customer waives it, I don't NEED to "do it anyway."

The reason, I am told, is that "just because the customer waives the requirement for PPAP submission, doesn't mean that you are absolved of the requirement to compile one and retain the data/paperwork. PPAP is *still* a requirement of the standard.

Have I really been misinterpreting the requirement this bad and do I need to re-evaluate my operation of the PPAPing?

Clue me in!

Elsmar Forum Sponsor


Hi ALM..
It was always my understanding that a full PPAP was required to be completed and on file when any of the process / product change reasons listed in the PPAP manual were there - new or changed equipment, changed location, drawing release, etc. This applies whether it is a customer originated change or your requested change.

However, the actual submission requirement, that is, the requirement for amount of documentation sent to the customer for approval, was up to the customer. The "levels" listed are submission levels. Your customer determines this submission.

The reasoning behind a complete PPAP for any of the changes listed is to protect you and your customer from nonconforming product. ANY changes should be verified, and any related operator instructions and measurement devices and manufacturing aids and etc., etc. should be reviewed. If there are any problems after the process change, a FMEA review is likely in order. This could result in a revised control plan. Basically, with any "change" to the product or process, an APQP type review is in order, and perhaps to the extent that a feasibility review is in order.

But, the good news is that this review could be only a few minutes, and one or two folks. Depending upon the scope of the change, a quick review of the appropriate process documentation, a part layout or capability, items like that that are used to verify product conformance, may only take a few minutes. If there is no change to your documentation, copy it, put it in the PPAP file for that change. It could be that easy.

What your auditors are looking for, and more importantly what you should be looking for, is verification that the process / product change had no negative impact to the product quality, or if there is a change to the product quality, it is known, assessed, and resolved. All of the methods and tools that help make the product conforming must be reviewed. This includes a consideration of a review of a new supplier.

Horror stories are always circulating about this. Recalls, lawsuits, things like this many times have their origins in a "change" that someone thought was no big deal, and was not verified. I cannot tell you how many times I have seen a customer change a print, even for a minor dimension, and the change was not relayed to the tool maker, or the minor dimension turned out to be a key characteristic to the manufacturing folks, or a necessary gage was not ordered in time and the product is ready to ship, and so on.

An appropriate review - could be 10 minutes, could be longer - when the customer document came in could have allowed a review of the scop of the change by concerned parties, plans for the amount of needed verification work, and the timing for the assembly of the PPAP. You may have a running change, or you may have to build inventory of the current part to allow testing and verification of the changed part at the customer.

No, don't take the chance. Yes, do your PPAP, to the extent necessary. Submit the appropriate level as requested to your customer. File the whole thing, and then proudly show it to your auditor next time. They likely won't be back for a while.

When I teach this, I ask to consider this: Suppose the customer calls [he has every right to] a few days after the first shipment and says the parts don't work, send the PPAP stuff.


We have operated for YEARS, both under QS and now under TS (and yes, it's been audited under TS) that if a customer waives the PPAP requirement we are NOT required to perform one, even a "desktop" ppap. It's no different than the requirement that your suppliers be ISO certified - if one of your customers wants you to use a supplier or sub who is NOT certified and they give you the OKAY (in writing, of course) , then you use that supplier. Voice-o'-the-customer rules. In a recent audit to TS this was looked at hard because we have a new Tier 1 Automotive customer who wavied both the requirement for a PPAP AND the requirement that we have/comply with their "Supplier Quality Manual." Raised eyebrows, but not an audit issue, because bottom line that's what the customer wanted and we had their preference in writing.


An Early Cover
Trusted Information Resource
Lucky you! I have been dinged twice by two differnt registrars at two different companies. They both said even if the customer waives PPAP you need to do it anyway. The said the customer cannt waive PPAP despite a written waiver!

Batman - you are right on - forget PPAP and requirements, we should want to satisfy ourselves things are good regardless of the customer or registrar.

Howard Atkins

Forum Administrator
Staff member
TS says

The organization shall conform to a product and manufacturing process approval procedure recognized by the customer.

If the customer waives then you are conforming

IMO you should still do all the work as the various documents are all required by different clauses of the standard you just do not need it all in one binder with PPAP on the front


The customer overules the standard, even if you can get PPAP waived, then there is probably another clause in the standard which loops back and says you have to do it.

Howard Atkins

Forum Administrator
Staff member
Morcs74 said:
The customer overules the standard, even if you can get PPAP waived, then there is probably another clause in the standard which loops back and says you have to do it.
Exactly and 2 design output supplemental, FMEA, Flow chart, Control plan
7.6.1 MSA


But come to think of it, our current project wasnt done to PPAP, we used IBC vehicles' own ISA process and it was all done on the back of a cigarette packet so to speak.
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