The Quality Herald – news about quality, global sourcing and manufacturing

How Materialise’s Founding Couple 3D Printed A Billion-Dollar Fortune

For a moment this winter, Fried Vancraen and Hilde Ingelaere, the founding couple behind 3D-printing firm Materialise saw their wealth soar past $2.6 billion, by Forbes’ calculations, as the company’s stock topped $80-a-share. Easy come, easy go: As 3D printing stocks have fallen, the Leuven, Belgium-based company has seen its shares drop to a recent $41, making… Continue reading How Materialise’s Founding Couple 3D Printed A Billion-Dollar Fortune

How manufacturers can unlock efficiency gains through opportunities for improvement & automation

As vaccination programmes continue and lockdowns slowly begin to lift, the focus for many manufacturers will be to revive production as quickly as possible; make global supply chains more resilient; and accelerate digital transformation to optimise financial processes in the long term in order to stay as competitive as possible. To gain a better understanding… Continue reading How manufacturers can unlock efficiency gains through opportunities for improvement & automation

Are Lockdowns Creating Tomorrow’s Opportunities For Manufacturers

In my last article, I started to unpack the idea of a digital rundle, and more specifically its implications when it comes to traditional product manufacturers using digital content delivered on their proprietary device to provision new services. These services could just passively extend the product use frequency, serve as heightened consumer experience to drive… Continue reading Are Lockdowns Creating Tomorrow’s Opportunities For Manufacturers

Ask These 4 Tough Questions to Improve Your Manufacturing Operations

<!– Ask These 4 Tough Questions to Improve Your Manufacturing Operations | 2021-03-17 | Quality Magazine

NIMS and Edge Factor Provide Free Experiences to Inspire the Future Workforce

Quality Insider NIMS and Edge Factor Provide Free Experiences to Inspire the Future Workforce Empower students, parents, and job-seekers to explore skilled trades, apprenticeships, and more Published: Wednesday, March 17, 2021 – 12:00 (NIMS: Fairfax, VA) — The National Institute of Metalworking Skills (NIMS) is partnering with Edge Factor this year to inspire students and… Continue reading NIMS and Edge Factor Provide Free Experiences to Inspire the Future Workforce

Asset Inventory Management

Management Asset Inventory Management Tools and process explained Published: Wednesday, March 17, 2021 – 12:01 If somebody asked you for a list of your company’s assets, would you be able to provide it? What about the exact location, condition, and utilization of each asset? Organizations with a large number of physical assets can answer those… Continue reading Asset Inventory Management

Long-Lasting Impact of Pandemic on Supply Chain Quality

Management Long-Lasting Impact of Pandemic on Supply Chain Quality Some surprising pros and cons are emerging from the global chaos Published: Wednesday, March 17, 2021 – 12:03 It’s been about one year since the Covid-19 impact intensified from a seemingly isolated health scare to a worldwide, ubiquitous tragedy that has upended daily life as we… Continue reading Long-Lasting Impact of Pandemic on Supply Chain Quality

Advantages and Disadvantages of Manufacturing in Turkey

One of the most diverse countries to source from, Turkey offers a lot of opportunities due to its strategic location right on the cusp between Asia and Europe. We discuss some of the benefits of manufacturing in Turkey as well as some of the challenges.
What are the main industries in Turkey?
Turkey offers the capability to manufacture a huge range of products. The top ten exports include vehicles, machinery (including computer components), gems and precious metals, knits and clothing, iron and steel, electrical machinery and other equipment, non-knit clothes and accessories, articles made of iron or steel, plastics, and related products, and mineral fuels including oil.

Export of vehicles makes up 15.2% of Turkey’s total exports, valuing the country’s automotive manufacturing industry at US$23.9bln. While machinery makes up 8.8% of exports, at a value of US$13.8bln, number 10 in the export list – mineral fuels, including oil, alone comprise 2.8% of exports for an industry valued at US$4.3bln.
Products ranging from ceramic sinks, door pulls and handles, to PVC clingfilm and antiseptic wet wipes are shipped off predominantly to the United States, while Germany, another big export destination, has more demand for products ranging from toilets and seats, seat covers, to metal poles and leather notebooks. The United Kingdom, Spain, and even Hong Kong use Turkey as a sourcing destination for various products as well.
What are the advantages of manufacturing in Turkey?
With a well-established and diverse manufacturing sector, Turkey has several advantages for anyone looking to manufacture there. With an established domestic logistics network, Turkey’s geostrategic location is a huge positive – with the added benefit of a huge network of shipyards and a port structure that enables goods to be shipped out to both Asia and Europe very easily. Turkey’s trade agreement network is part of this geostrategic benefit, with both a customs union in place with the European Union, and free trade agreements with more than 20 countries.
Additionally, Turkey has a young and well-educated labor pool. Not only is there a qualified talent pool of engineers, but the country also attracts senior managers with extensive international experience – likely a by-product of Turkey’s strategic location. With such a qualified talent pool, Turkey has a reputation for being able to consider the brand image, yielding speed-to-market and high-quality end products for sourcing companies.
The ability to build strong relationships with Turkish manufacturers has led to an increasing number of US brands getting high-quality leather handbags manufactured there. The combined understanding of diverse production capabilities, understanding of the brand, brand-building, and product destination market, has given Turkey a strong competitive advantage.
Added to these benefits is a competitive foreign currency exchange rate, which makes Turkey’s price-point a positive for most manufacturers.
What are the challenges to manufacturing in Turkey?
Ultimately, there are still challenges to manufacturing in Turkey. These include a slightly higher political risk, so despite reliable manufacturing facilities, security risks may contribute to an inability to visit factories regularly. Currency fluctuation is also important to watch, although it tends to remain competitive, the variations can give rise to markedly different price-points at different times.
Other concerns include language and cultural differences, which can play a role in manufacturing anywhere outside the brand’s home country.
How do you ensure product quality and compliance in Turkey?
With so many manufacturers to choose from, it can be tough to assess which one exactly works for your sourcing needs. Ensuring supplier compliance and reliability as well as controlling quality assurance in Turkey are risks that need to be managed. Pro QC offers the following solutions:
Supplier Quality Assurance and Auditing
Since visiting your suppliers can be a challenge, especially when travel is virtually impossible due to Covid-19, it is important to make sure you match with a factory that can handle your project requirements. To do this, an initial supplier evaluation, conducted by a third-party inspection service in Turkey, can provide relevant information through a one-day on-site assessment. This covers primary Quality Management System components, equipment, facilities, documents, and certifications, as well as general capabilities. Relevant information is submitted to the sourcing agent through a report with photos of the factory, a concise assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of the supplier, and a recommendation on the risk level of the supplier.
Based on the product categories for import, there is a menu of different audit solutions that can be applied. For example, buyers of medical devices could consider conducting audits based on ISO 13485 (requirements for a quality management system that demonstrates an ability to provide medical devices that meet customer and regulatory requirements). Buyers of auto parts would want to ensure their potential supplier either has a strong quality management system in place, or complies with ISO 9001, IATF 16949 (quality management system for automotive-related components), or VDA 6.3 (a process audit assessing the entire life cycle of a product manufactured for the automotive industry).
2. Third-Party Inspection Services in Turkey
Third-party inspection services in Turkey are particularly useful for ensuring that product quality standards are met before goods are shipped. This service ensures the product conforms to product specifications and also identifies any defective products before shipment. The third-party inspection service deploys inspectors to the factory site for a factory audit, to verify workmanship, functionality, packaging, labeling, quantities for shipment, and other criteria as required. This enables quick identification, containment, and resolution for any quality issues at an early stage of the manufacturing cycle.
Contact us anytime at or visit our website to learn more about our quality solutions in Turkey.

All You Need to Know About Production Part Approval Process (PPAP)

Quality and efficiency in the automotive supply chain – Production Part Approval Process (PPAP)
The automotive supply chain is extremely complex and dynamic. PPAP (Production Part Approval Process) is an industry-standard that drives down nonconformances and delays.
Read this article for an understanding of PPAP and Pro QC’s solutions.
Objective of PPAP
PPAP is meant to standardize automotive product design and manufacturing. A supplier embarks on this process to demonstrate they can consistently produce the part according to specification at the agreed-upon rate of production. Other objectives of the process include optimizing supplier-client communications, identifying problems early, and establishing a framework for monitoring and controlling manufacturer and supplier changes.
An automotive parts supplier follows the PPAP guideline to ensure they meet the design and product specifications of the customer. A PPAP submission is required when a customer asks for it.
Some language and procedures in PPAP are very specialized and industry-specific. But engineers and quality professionals will recognize the underlying concepts of process validation, change management, standardization, and continuous improvement.

Where does PPAP fit in automotive quality?
A group of American carmakers formed the Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) in the 1980s. Their mission is “driving down costs and complexity from the automotive supply chain.”
In the 1980s AIAG developed a set of automotive industry project management standards called Advanced Product Quality Planning (APQP). PPAP is the foremost process in this set of standards. It sits alongside other essential components of a product launch or change such as failure mode effects analysis, design reviews, and prototyping.
Among these, PPAP is a prominent standard. Its effectiveness has led other industries, including aerospace, to adopt it too. The AIAG publishes the PPAP Manual and the current edition was released in 2006.
The PPAP Manual is the definitive guide to automotive supplier management. The manual sets forth all aspects of a PPAP submission, which are broken down into elements and levels.
Elements of a PPAP Submission
A part supplier submits a PPAP to show the customer that they have refined their design and production capabilities to satisfy the customer’s requirements. Each element serves as evidence and support. The supplier completes the following 18 PPAP elements as applicable:
Design Records: Including drawings technical specifications
Authorized Engineering Change (note) Documents: Describing design changes
Engineering Approval: Approval from the production trial in the customer’s plant
Design Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (DFMEA): Examines part failure likelihood and impact
Process Flow Diagram: Maps the entire manufacturing process from beginning to end
Process Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (PFMEA): A systematic analysis of a new or revised process to avoid or resolve problems
Control Plan: A written plan for controlling production parts and processes
Measurement System Analysis Studies: A thorough assessment of variation in the measurement system
Dimensional Results: Correlates actual part measurements with drawings
Records of Material/Performance Tests: A summary of all tests on the part
Initial Process Studies: Statistical process control charts to demonstrate control of variability in production
Qualified Laboratory Documentation: Includes the certifications of all contributing testing facilities
Appearance Approval Report: Certifies the part meets physical and design requirements
Sample Production Parts: Parts from the initial production run
Master Sample: A part endorsed by supplier and customer
Checking Aids: A list, with supporting documentation, of the tools used for checking parts
Customer-Specific Requirements: Checklists where the supplier shows they fulfilled any customer-specific requirements
Part Submission Warrant: A summary of the full PPAP submission
Some customers require additional elements beyond these 18, such as an initial sample inspection report and others. A supplier must complete every applicable element regardless of the level (see below) of the submission.
Levels of a PPAP Submission
The customer selects the PPAP level based on how much evidence and detail they require in the submission.
Level 1: Part Submission Warrant (PSW) only
Level 2: PSW with product samples and limited supporting data
Level 3: PSW with product samples and complete supporting data
Level 4: PSW and other requirements as defined by the customer
Level 5: PSW with product samples and complete supporting data available for review at the supplier’s manufacturing location
As you can see, meeting a Level 5 submission is a more rigorous process than meeting a Level 1 submission. A supplier will want to establish a robust, mature quality system and gain access to PPAP expertise to be able to meet the customer-specified level.
Production Part Approval Process (PPAP) Addresses These Specific Challenges
The part approval process can vary drastically between customers. PPAP provides a shared understanding of what is required to obtain part approval. It standardizes the process.
A change to the part design or process requires customer approval. PPAP standardizes this approval process.
Part performance and other characteristics can vary once production is underway. PPAP ensures part submissions have enough data to measure and control this. Detailed records of part performance at launch allow for assessment of drift.
Part design is sometimes convoluted. PPAP details design records to ensure traceability of part design status to the origin.
Changes to a part or process can have unintended effects on the next level assembly or process. PPAP controls these changes, subjecting each one to an approval outlet to ensure conformance.
Pro QC’s PPAP Consulting Services
The PPAP is lengthy and detailed. Each PPAP submission is different, and each one is the result of a negotiation between supplier and customer to determine how to satisfy each element of the submission at the specified level.
Most clients source globally and have to manage multiple PPAP projects simultaneously. Pro QC’s PPAP program and associated automotive industry supplier management services cut through the complexity of this process to achieve a lasting transformation of the supply chain.
Pro QC’s PPAP Service Process
Our auditor will provide an on-site gap analysis of the PPAP process. We go through the 18 elements of the PPAP and identify nonconformances. According to the results found during the gap analysis, we help the factory meet compliance with PPAP and implement sustainable changes.
Last Word
Based on your needs, we will partner with you in the PPAP, with the outcome of driving down defects and delays and establishing a framework for supply chain and product development quality.