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Developing and bringing new products to market keeps companies competitive. When manufacturers listen to what consumers want and deliver it, they win customer loyalty.

However, introducing new products to market can be risky. If manufacturers don’t take a preventive approach to quality, faulty products can reach the customer site. This could result in costly recalls and damage to the company’s reputation.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that equipment defects in automobiles resulted in 87 recalls last year, affecting over 5 million consumers. In the first half of 2019, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reported more than 20 medical device recalls. Many of these recalls were due to cracks, leaks, and fragmentation and led to problems ranging from inaccurate readings to fires.

QAD CEBOS Enterprise Quality Management Software (EQMS) includes advanced product quality planning (APQP), production part approval process (PPAP), and an inspection application, allowing manufacturers to automate and streamline the new product introduction (NPI) process.

The Challenges of NPI

Many manufacturing companies take a reactive approach to quality. Once a flaw in a product shows up, the manufacturer looks for the cause of the problem and tries to avoid or eliminate it. Unfortunately, if problems aren’t detected or eliminated quickly enough, a nonconforming part or product can reach the customer. A defect in a new product can result in a failed launch and, at a minimum, a reduction in product margins due to costs of the defect.

Manufacturers often rely on spreadsheets to monitor quality. Manually processing these spreadsheets takes time the company doesn’t have. Manual processes are prone to error, and it is difficult to get a complete picture of the production process.

Sometimes processes get duplicated because they can’t be tracked effectively. When manufacturers rely on spreadsheets, they increase the time to market for their products and it can be difficult to manage change for a family of parts.

The Advantages of APQP/PPAP

APQP and PPAP ensure that only the highest-quality products reach the consumer. With APQP, a proactive approach to quality is easy to adopt.

APQP has two main functions:

  • Managing the whole project using a template that controls who, what, and when throughout the product development cycle, making sure things get done when they need to be accomplished so design, development, and production occur on schedule
  • Proactively managing risks at the Design and Process phases of a new product through failure mode effects analysis, making sure you are avoiding severe and high-risk failures ahead of time

Spending time upfront to control product quality with APQP saves time and money in the long run and lowers risk during a product launch.

With QAD CEBOS APQP, change management is library-based. Manufacturers no longer need to rely on spreadsheets and manual processes to detect problems and implement necessary corrections.

In the automotive industry, products are constructed from parts that come from third-party suppliers. PPAP helps ensure that these parts meet the strictest quality standards before they are incorporated into the assembly process. In manufacturing, these flawed parts are like the one bad apple that spoils the whole bunch.

APQP and PPAP provide the documents, such as failure modes and effects analysis (FMEA) and control plans, that both manufacturers and suppliers need to ensure product and part quality.

Why Manufacturers Need an Inspection Application

Aligning a control plan and an inspection plan is difficult. The control plan sets quality standards and policies. The control plan also specifies when things need to be measured and how many samples need to be taken. The inspection plan must enforce all these elements. If any measurement deviates, it creates a nonconformance, and the product could fail.

The QAD CEBOS EQMS contains an Inspection Application that automatically aligns the control and inspection processes. This alignment allows manufacturers to conduct inspections with the necessary documentation. Inspections occur in real time, and the data can be matched against the control plan requirements. Any deviations can be corrected quickly so they don’t happen again.

A Preventive Approach to NPI

Upfront planning ensures new product introductions run smoothly. QAD CEBOS EQMS helps with this planning by delivering APQP, PPAP, and an Inspection Application.

With our APQP, manufacturers can manage NPI projects using templates. PPAP makes it easier for suppliers to update tasks assigned to them and provide necessary documentation. These solutions promote standardization, efficiency, and change management using a library-based approach to FMEA and control plans. The Inspection Application streamlines and tracks the inspection process for more efficient quality management.

QAD CEBOS APQP ensures all project milestones are reached and completed on time and within budget so your new product launch is a success.

Don’t miss the next QAD CEBOS webinar. Register for the webinar QAD CEBOS EQMS: APQP/PPAP and Inspection Application Overview today.