Put very simply, a QMS is a documented set of business processes focused entirely on achieving predefined objectives relating to quality, products or services. An effective QMS includes processes, procedures and responsibilities that help a company:
- Deliver quality products and services;
- Become more efficient and effective in what they do;
- Comply with regulatory standards for their industry.
These are all very important benefits for both the manufacturer and their customers. Partnering with a manufacturer who has a well-planned and well-implemented QMS means that quality problems are addressed before they can ever affect an end product. For the company implementing the QMS, benefits include:
- A consistent process: Manufacturers with a QMS in place typically document, monitor and review their processes, which means that they can achieve consistency across their activities. This not only equates to reliability in the quality of the service they deliver, it also means that replacing or expanding staff is less disruptive than it might be in other organizations.
- Minimizing expensive mistakes: A QMS, particularly in a facility like Etratech’s which is dedicated to a culture of continuous improvement, means mistakes happen infrequently. When mistakes do happen, the entire process is reviewed and updated to prevent that mistake from occurring again. That minimization of error results in significant cost savings, as well as more satisfied clients.
- Improved efficiency: Better processes minimize time wasted and result in improved efficiency. In addition to a reduction in time wasted, a good process also means that efforts aren’t duplicated, and that jobs will be done well enough the first time to avoid having to redo tasks. Ultimately, that means greater output and higher production yield. A focus on continual improvement means that processes will only get better over time.
- Improved customer satisfaction: A quality management system inevitably results in better products delivered over shorter time periods, and at the best rate possible. Additionally, having a QMS in place allows team members to focus on customer care, since a quality manufacturing process is assuredly in place.
- Ability to enter new markets and new territories: A known QMS, such as ISO 9001, TS16949 or Total Quality Management (TQM), is exactly the trust symbol many customers need. If your business is considering entering a new vertical market, having a QMS that’s been certified by a third-party can be very helpful.
- Fact-based decision-making: The most effective business decisions are data-based. A documented quality process means that businesses have this data on which to base their decisions – and to make the right choices. Over time, continued documentation will allow businesses to prove the effectiveness of past decisions and make more confident decisions in the future.
- Keep improving everything: The documenting, monitoring and reviewing of processes on a continual basis means that all facets of the business will become more efficient, more effective and less likely to produce any errors or inconsistencies. Businesses that commit to a quality management system will only continue to get better over time.
What does quality management mean for customers? Why does it matter?
As a business, there are many benefits in partnering with a manufacturing partner that has a QMS in place! For starters, depending on your product, your industry may require that your partners comply with certain standards. But the benefits go beyond meeting those requirements and include:
Better quality products: A partner dedicated to efficient processes and quality management will produce superior product, consistently.
Fewer errors, resulting in fewer end-user complaints: When your manufacturing partner can minimize or eliminate errors on their end, that means you can rely on the high quality of your finished product. It will perform as expected, and your own customers will be satisfied.
Protection or elevation of your brand image: Solid manufacturing processes result in solid products, and that means your company can maintain or improve its place in the market.
Long-term cost savings: Your quality-focused partner will have documented processes in place that result in less waste, fewer errors, and greater overall efficiencies. When evaluating total cost of ownership, piece price is only one component. Warranty returns, logistics, brand/customer image, and all of the associated administration costs often get overlooked. Over time, high quality product consistently costs less than bargain-basement unit pricing.
Quality Management Systems make good businesses sense for all parties involved, regardless of your industry. For OEMs in particular, choosing a manufacturing partner with a proven QMS in place means that you will have a reliable partner who will consistently deliver products that meet or exceed your standards. Why wouldn’t you choose to partner with a company focused on quality?
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