Quality Management Process


Quality assurance involves product testing and the management of nonconforming material. Quality management processes help guarantee a high level of product quality in your supply chain. These processes also help optimize supply chain processes and increase customer satisfaction. Quality management can help you manage turnaround times when you’re dealing with nonconforming products, regardless of point of origin of those products. You can link diagnostic results to correction tasks. The system can schedule tasks to correct problems and therefore help prevent recurrences of those problems in the future. Quality management also lets you track issues (including internal problems) by problem type, and lets you identify solutions as either short-term or long-term. Statistics about key performance indicators (KPIs) provide insight into nonconformance problems that have previously occurred and the solutions that were applied to correct them. You can use historical data to help review the effectiveness of quality measures that have previously been taken and to determine appropriate measures in the future.

Controlling the quality management process

Here are some of the ways that you can control the quality management process:

  • Create quality orders that are based on trigger points such as “at product receipt” for inbound operations or “at product pick-up” for outbound operations.
  • Document test results, and determine whether the results meet the established test criteria and acceptable quality levels.
  • Use document management for detailed product specifications and user-specific notes as part of reporting during the inspection process.
  • Maintain nonconforming products, and correlate these products with additional nonconformance information to track down the original cause of a problem.
  • Document the cost of managing a non-conformance. This cost can include the items (such as spare parts), miscellaneous charges, and the time-sheet hours that are required in order to correct the non-conformance.
  • Schedule error correction processes by using correction handling that is linked to quality orders.

Product testing and quality orders

Product testing is typically referred to as quality control and uses quality orders. By using the quality control functionality, you can do the following:

  • Define the tests that must be performed for material. These tests include the quality specifications, the applicable test instrument, documents that describe the test, a sampling plan, and the acceptable quality levels (AQL).
  • Create a quality order that identifies the tests that must be performed for a specific order, such as a purchase or production order, or for a specific inventory quantity. You can create a quality order manually or generate a quality order automatically, based on quality guidelines.
  • Define the quality guidelines that are related to purchase, quarantine, production, or sales orders in each business process, so that a quality order can be automatically generated that identifies the testing requirements for incoming or outgoing material.
  • Record the test results in a quality order, validate the test results against the AQL, and print a certificate of analysis that displays the test results.

Failure Mode

A failure mode describes an item that has a quality problem. The QM process lets you create an order that describes a quantity of nonconforming material, the problem source, the problem type, and explanatory notes. You can define a classification of problem types to make analysis of material easier. You can also tag and report to guide the disposition of nonconforming material. For example, the tag and report might indicate a condition of Unusable or Restricted usage.  Failure Modes are associated with a problem type. Problem types are where you specify and separate which problem types can be associated with nonconformance and ‘approved nonconformance’.

For example:  Nonconformances of service request type might reflect a classification of customer complaints, whereas the ‘approved’ nonconformances of the Internal type might represent a specific/chosen classification of defect codes.

Approved nonconformance

You can optionally define one or more related operations for an approved nonconformance. A related operation describes the work that should be performed, and contains a list of the quality operations that you’ve defined and descriptive text about the reason for the work. After you define an operation, you can optionally define the miscellaneous charges, items, and timesheet labor hours that are required in order to perform the work. The calculated costs are shown for the related operation, and the total calculated costs are shown for the nonconformance. The calculated costs and the underlying details (about items, labor hours, and miscellaneous charges) represent reference information, and they are used only in the quality management function.

Correction handling

A Corrections page lets you create a list of nonconformances that must be corrected. Each correction item is associated with the diagnostic type that caused the problem to be discovered. The Corrections page also contains information about who must perform a corrective action, and when. You can describe the details of the problem and the corrective action that is required by attaching a document to the correction. After the nonconformance has been addressed or corrected, you “close” the correction item by selecting the Completed option. You can also indicate that the solution was a short-term solution.

It’s a good idea to define a unique document type for corrections by using the Document type page. You can then use the Report setup page to define whether comments for this document type are printed on the correction report. A printed correction report displays information about the nonconformance and the related nonconformance notes. The report also includes correction information, such as the diagnostic type, and the related correction notes.