Strategic Quality Programme for Hydraulic Cranes
This client had recently outsourced all component manufacturing whilst retaining in-house mechanical, hydraulic and electronic assembly operations. The brief was to establish a defect containment perimeter – or quality firewall – for the factory, assuring the quality of cranes leaving the factory whilst preparing the ground for an advanced product quality planning (APQP) system.
Working in collaboration with local management and shop floor teams, a pilot programme was implemented on one assembly line. The programme began by raising awareness of key concepts, including hold/check points, critical to quality (CtQ) criteria, acceptance standards, visual management and continual improvement loops. Next, we introduced tools for planning and establishing the firewall, then guided the client’s team towards full ownership and implementation.
Deliverables included a master firewall template, detailed check sheets with integral CtQs, data collection facilities, skills matrix, KPIs and quality planning procedure. On completion, benefits were demonstrated in terms of: time and money saved by finding assembly defects early; reputation protected by preventing problems escaping into the field; overall reduction in nonconformity; positive impact on workforce behaviour.