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Beacon Quality Blog

A blog on plant floor quality: IATF 16949:2016, ISO 9001:2015, layered process audits, 5S, health and safety, gemba & more. Our software, Beacon Quality, simplifies these processes with our mobile auditing solution.

How to Talk to Your Quality Director About LPA Software

Nov 06, 2018  |  Joe Bollard

Layered process audits (LPAs) are mandatory for automotive suppliers and growing in popularity in the aerospace industry due to its effectiveness in improving quality at the process level. However, you may find that an effective LPA program isn’t easy to manage when done manually through spreadsheets, resulting in administrative burden.

Maybe you’re doing ok scheduling these high-frequency audits, but people are just checking the box during the process checks (if they complete them at all). Or maybe you’re bogged down in reporting, and it’s taking too long to find and fix problems.

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Top 5 IATF 16949 Challenges (and How to Solve Them)

Aug 21, 2017  |  Joe Bollard

As of September 14, 2018, ISO/TS 16949 certificates will no longer be valid, requiring automotive suppliers to certify to the new version, IATF 16949. Transition audits are underway and will continue into next year, but many companies still have a long way to go to prepare. 

Let’s look at some of the biggest challenges companies are facing, including new requirements that could trip you up and how to efficiently document compliance.

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The #1 Mistake in Layered Process Audit Programs

Jun 19, 2017  |  Joe Bollard

Layered process audits (LPAs) are a standard requirement in the automotive industry, which saw more than 53 million vehicles recalled in 2016, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. The reality is that many companies struggle with implementing an LPA program effectively due to the overwhelming complexity of scheduling and data management.

The number one mistake we see these companies make? Trying to manage LPA programs with paper-based and spreadsheet-based systems.

Executed properly, LPA programs require hundreds or even thousands of individual audits over the course of the year. It’s extremely difficult to do the multilayer scheduling correctly with spreadsheets alone, and next to impossible to fully analyze the results for meaningful quality improvements with a paper-based system.

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3 Key Investments to Increase Quality and Reduce Production Costs

Apr 28, 2015  |  Joe Bollard

In today’s competitive environment, manufacturers are more focused than ever on delivering high-quality products while reducing costs. Unfortunately, too often efforts are driven by a skewed perception of how best to achieve this goal. This is because many manufacturers pay greater attention to the cost of poor quality (CoPQ), comprising internal and external failure costs, over the cost of good quality (CoGQ), comprising proactive prevention and appraisal costs. As a result, they make reactive investments that yield less return and later prove to be insufficient.

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