The term quality control refers to any measures that are taken to ensure that the products made in a particular facility are free of defects. Given the high volume of products leaving most modern manufacturing facilities every day, it is critical to ensure that production standards remain high on every machine and throughout every shift. If standards begin to fall, thousands of units of products could be affected.
Improving quality control in your facility is both an important goal and an attainable one. There are three techniques you can employ to achieve better quality control in manufacturing and ensure that every product that leaves your facility meets the high standards set by your company.
The Importance of Quality Control in Manufacturing
There are countless reasons to optimize manufacturing quality control. Some of the most compelling include:
Less Waste – Curbing production problems early on allows you to minimize the amount of product that they impact, producing fewer wasted defective units.
Better Compliance – Many industries are legally bound to uphold certain standards in their production processes, and strong quality control measures ensure that these rules are followed.
Higher Customer Loyalty – Customers are much more likely to make repeat purchases from your company if they know that they can count on you to deliver quality products.
More Referrals – Likewise, happy customers often tell people they know about your brand and recommend that they try your products for themselves.
Empowered Employees – Good quality control is a team effort, and every individual worker must do their part. Playing an active part in this process often improves morale among staff members and may lead to production gains in other areas as well.
Better Safety – Many product defects have the potential to cause injuries among consumers. Producing fewer defective products results in fewer injuries, fewer costly lawsuits, and less negative PR for your company.
Better Corporate Image – Building a reputation for quality products can help your company gain public favor and become more prominent within your industry.
Higher Profits – Better quality control means fewer recalls and fewer lost customers, leaving you with a greater percentage of your overall revenue as profit.
How To Improve Quality Control at Your Facility
1. Use Statistical Process Control
Statistical Process Control (or SPC) involves monitoring a facility’s output in statistical terms at every step in the production process. The goal is to identify production problems by observing anomalies in the data, allowing managers to correct the root issue before it can ruin the entire batch in which it manifested.
Statistics are invaluable in the quality control process for manufacturing, particularly when highly granular data is available. Tracking the number of defective products that are made on each line and during each shift will help you to pinpoint the origins of every individual production issue and take steps to correct it as soon as possible.
2. Embrace Lean Manufacturing
Lean manufacturing seeks to maximize efficiency to reduce waste within the production process. Using lean manufacturing processes at your facility requires you to carefully examine your current processes and determine where they could be streamlined for greater efficiency.
When you do this, you will discover that lean manufacturing and quality control go hand in hand. For example, you might find that one of your injection molding machines tends to overfill the mold and create products with imperfect seams. Fixing this problem will result in less wasted plastic, but it will also lower the number of defective products coming out of your facility.
3. Use Total Productive Maintenance
Total Productive Maintenance (or TPM) is a manufacturing strategy that encourages individual workers to work together to help maintain the machines they work with. The goal of this strategy is to create an environment where your equipment is constantly being adjusted and fine-tuned over the course of each shift, keeping it in good working order at all times.
If executed well, this approach can prevent many of the machine errors that cause production defects to appear inside a facility. Eliminating this common source of defects automatically boosts manufacturing quality control and reduces the amount of work you will have to do to track down the source of any other quality control problems you identify.
Matics Improves Manufacturing Quality Control
Manufacturers who successfully implement effective quality control measures have much to gain, and your facility’s production data contains all of the information you need to accomplish this goal.
Matics is a powerful tool for quality control managers that leverages the power of statistics and automation to quickly boost quality control inside a facility. Our shop floor control software can be used to integrate any of the three strategies described above into your facility’s existing quality control measures.
With Matics, you can:
- Plan and implement a detailed, consistent manufacturing quality control strategy.
- Define specific test parameters to track quality control performance over time.
- Capture and analyze testing data to determine the effectiveness of your quality control regimen.
- Send automatic notifications to staff when statistics or unexpected events indicate that quality control intervention is needed, encouraging individual action and accountability.
- Provide real-time predictions with SPC to ensure that all actions taken support your facility’s quality control goals.
Our comprehensive plug-and-play solution supports your experienced staff to ensure that your facility produces as few defective products as possible.
Contact us today to learn more about how Matics can help you manage your facility’s manufacturing quality control initiatives to reduce waste and improve profitability.