In manufacturing environment, control of process is needed to make sure a system is producing at the expected quality level. Control is often done by inspection, which can involve measurement, tasting, touching, weighing, or testing of the product. Its goal is to detect a bad process immediately.
Inspections, or audit, can take place at any of the following points:
- At supplier’s plant while the supplier is producing.
- At your facility upon receipt of goods from the supplier.
- Before costly or irreversible processes.
- During the step-by-step production process.
- When production is complete.
- Before delivery from your facility.
- At the point of customer contact.
In my earlier post, The Toyota Way, we learned that team leaders in the car giant’s plant stopped the assembly when they detected quality problems. Inspection was done during the step-by-step production process, as noted above.
Jay Heizer & Barry Render, “Operations Management”, 8th edition