What is quality for an OEM in their internal manufacturing?

R

Ratbs

#1
Dear Folks:
I have been associated with quality assurance for the past 8years or so and i have been working with an automobile tier 1 supplier and i have been preached by my mentors that customer is quality and improve the process quality which inturn improves the product quality and ges customer satisfaction. Always ask why and not who but my present job is with an non automotive OEM. I am not getting the real meaning of how quality is pursued by an OEM. What is quality for an OEM? We are pretty much an assembly company with minumin manufacturing like press brakes fabrication, welding, painting and assembly. In my present job i have been hearing that for all problems we face in our internal manufacturing i always get an answer as operator error, operator does not read the print, it is a vendor problem. I have been preaching them or telling them that we have to see the process not the person who does that but i think i am hitting a wall everytime:frust: i tell them about corrective and preventive actions, process quality and stuffs like cost of quality all those stuff. It has made me think that may be OEM see quality in a different way. Please throw light on this.
thanks
ratbs
 
Elsmar Forum Sponsor
#2
This is not an easy thing, and you have touched on several issues. Herre is my take. Quality is viewed as the absence of pain. If I am comfortable in my current condition, I see no reason to change. When I start feeling uncomfortable, or can feel some pain, then I am compelled to respond.

In your situation, the organization is comfortable in saying it is the operator's or the vendor's fault. The perceived pain of examining the process to uncover the real root cause is greater than the pain they are experiencing, so they will not go there.

This might explain, but I know it really doesn't help. Perhaps you could show them the real pain in their current behavior, they might not recognize it. Some rarely do. Even as the ship is sinking, they refuse to accept there is pain. And the band played on.....
 
J
#3
Been There

Quality for an OEM is the same as anywhere else. Please the customer. The fact that you do the design doesn't change that.

From what you say, it sounds like a pretty "Primative" culture there.

("We've been doin it this way for 20 years little boy", type stuff.)

I would suggest looking at returned goods for a start to see what your external scrap rates and costs are, then do the same for internal costs. Management has to see what you do as valuable. Show them Dollars wasted.

Finally I would suggest ..... training training training.

Hope this helps

James
 
R

Ratbs

#4
Quality with OEM

JRKH:
I agree the point to start is with the cost of failure and interal wastage cost.
I am doing exactly the same thing right now i have started tracking the reject, rework internally with a cost value to it and also doing something on the returned goods too. I really appreciate all your comments i wanted to get more opinions and view from our knowledgable bunch of experts.
thanks
ratbs
 

Wes Bucey

Prophet of Profit
#5
One possible route to follow

db said:
This is not an easy thing, and you have touched on several issues. Herre is my take. Quality is viewed as the absence of pain. If I am comfortable in my current condition, I see no reason to change. When I start feeling uncomfortable, or can feel some pain, then I am compelled to respond.

In your situation, the organization is comfortable in saying it is the operator's or the vendor's fault. The perceived pain of examining the process to uncover the real root cause is greater than the pain they are experiencing, so they will not go there.

This might explain, but I know it really doesn't help. Perhaps you could show them the real pain in their current behavior, they might not recognize it. Some rarely do. Even as the ship is sinking, they refuse to accept there is pain. And the band played on.....
Over the years, I have frequently faced a similar situation with stubborn managers. Sadly, I admit that, despite my experience and "skill," sometimes the management is too set in its ways to even consider change. I love a challenge, but sometimes you have to know when to keep your head down and live to fight another day.

I have, however, won the battle more frequently than lost, so here's some tips to give you the best chance to win (no guarantees.)

You don't say where you stand in the hierarchy and that does make a BIG difference in your approach and the probability your comments will receive any fair hearing from management.



First, look at the situations where "operator error" is alleged. Examine them deeper to see the root cause behind the operator error. (You have to do this on your own time, since the management refuses to acknowledge a "situation" exists.)
Did he use the wrong drawing? Did he use the wrong tool? Did he leave out a component? Did he do a sloppy painting or welding job? Look deeper. Why was the wrong drawing available? Where was the right tool? Did he have adequate checklist and legible drawings to ensure all components were included? Were all components conveniently available? Were the paint or welding tools in good condition? Did the operator have training to do it correctly? Had he ever done it correctly in front of a supervisor to establish competency? Was the error consistent? Or was it one time? (Maybe the guy was drunk or concerned about a fight with his wife?)


Once you have the details and background on just ONE of these "operator error" events that can clearly be traced back to a cure with corrective or preventive action initiated by the management, THEN you can make a pitch to management.


Without a completely documented "story," the management has every right to view you as "some guy flapping his jaw."

WITH the documented story, you have credibility to suggest that MANY other events could be similarly tracked and "cured." If you have access to income and expense numbers, you can bolster your case by demonstrating the "cost of NON-QUALITY" versus the profit and value of QUALITY.

Risk - if you are not tactful and diplomatic in the way you gather facts and present your story, you may irk the wrong people for any number of reasons and find yourself on the outside looking in because you are not perceived as a "team player" even though your intent is to help the organization.
 
Last edited:
Likes: db
#6
Excellent Post Wes.

Your suggestions could lead to what I referred to as "show them the real pain in their current behavior", but in your usual manner, you said it much clearer than I. :agree:
 

CarolX

Super Moderator
Super Moderator
#7
Wes Bucey said:
Did he use the wrong drawing? Did he use the wrong tool? Did he leave out a component? Did he do a sloppy painting or welding job? Look deeper. Why was the wrong drawing available? Where was the right tool? Did he have adequate checklist and legible drawings to ensure all components were included? Were all components conveniently available? Were the paint or welding tools in good condition? Did the operator have training to do it correctly? Had he ever done it correctly in front of a supervisor to establish competency? Was the error consistent? Or was it one time? (Maybe the guy was drunk or concerned about a fight with his wife?)
Ratbs
Getting out on the floor and asking these questions can be one of the greatest tools in our little box. Connecting with the people doing the work. I work in a similar field, although we have about 1/3 your workforce. My most sucessful corrective actions have been those that I personally handle. Going out to the floor and finding the true root cause. And the people love it...they know I care about fixing the problem...not playing the blame game. Pretty soon...they are doing this themselves. The next step become where they become pro-active, as in preventative action...."hey, look at this...this part is real easy to form backwards..what can we do to prevent it?".
Lots of Luck,
CarolX
 
W

WALLACE

#8
Ratbs,
Is your manufacturing environment unionised?
Are there more than one shift per production out-puts?
I would say that, walking the process would indeed be the first foundational step in gathering information so as to, paint the big picture for your presentation to upper management.
Wallace.
 

Howard Atkins

Forum Administrator
Staff member
Admin
#9
Ratbs
I can understand that the management is willing to accept the answers of "operator error" as a convinient way of not accepting responsibility for their failures
- non allocation of resources to ensure this does not happen.

I do not understand how they use the excuse of vendor problem with out acting.
Despite the fact that this also shows that there is no interest to manage suppliers they here have a direct way to reinburse the costs.

Your situation makes me think that you are there because the management was told that they need a "Quality person" for their organisation and you are their "fig leaf"
You do not say if you are registered to ISO9001, if you are then you should explain to them without efficent corrective actions then this certificate will not be with you long.

I only hope that we can give you enough support to continue to explain to the management their problem.
 
R

Ratbs

#10
Dear Howard:
Thanks for all you views. Howard we are not ISO certified but i am trying implement all the procedures and systems in place as of ISO and trying to educate them inducing quality in the process and i would say that i am successful to some extent in doing that way and i am trying to preach that we have to pro-active rather reactive. To be pro active we have to control the process :bonk: . I have now implemented system to track rejects and scrap and also convinced the management to some extent i would say to 85% that we have to stress quality in every part of our business starting from design to shipment.
Right now i am streamlining the corrective action part with the vendors and it is showing some positive signs.
I thought may be the mentality of being a OEM makes you think that you always try to blame suppliers and operators. Thats y i thought of this question what is Quality for OEM and you know i am getting lot of responses on this which throws lot of light. I am also getting good ways or opinions to tackle lot of stuff. Thanks a lot.
ratbs
 
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