If you’re on the path to leaner quality, then quality control is not just a non-value-adding ‘evil’.
We’ve talked a bit about quality control (QC) and quality assurance (QA) on the path to being “lean”. (See Quality, parts One and Two, and also check out how SME’s can benefit from lean manufacturing.)
QC (traditional approach) finds defective products (but doesn’t prevent them), while QA (proactive approach) designs production and packaging processes that minimise “not quite right” or substandard output.
Often QC is seen as the “necessary evil” — a non-value-adding process that manufacturers really must do so they don’t send defective products out the door.
However, the underlying value is in establishing an integrated lean manufacturing process that incorporates QA and QC, and is measured for continuous improvement.
Take this example of one of our customers, who has iDSnet Manager. They are using this reporting tool to capture not only the downtime and availability of the production line, but also the quality metrics — including number of rejects, the reason for rejects (via reject codes) and the number of rejects in a set time period (so they immediately get an alert if rejects exceed the normal tolerance level).
At that time they can assess the situation and stop the line to fix the issue up-stream rather than have a lot of defective product.
Now that’s a very proactive way to reduce wastage and errors, and simultaneously increase automation and improve efficiencies. The impact on profit is substantial. And it’s all very simple.
Contact us to find out more about iDSnet Manager, vision systems and real-time dashboards.