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Changes in quality management of electronic components

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1 Author(s)
D. S. Girling ; ITT, Components Group, Paignton, UK

Quality management is not a striving towards perfection but a practical, realistic, objective approach to the achievement of an agreed standard. Quality engineering involves the design of quality systems and the investigation of nonconformance with feedback for corrective action. This can only be achieved by creative interaction with the other functions in a manufacturing unit. Quality engineering is not a narrow specialisation but a broadly based activity which could well lead to general management. With the growth of consumer demand for high quality and reliability, legal requirements for consumer protection and the needs of advanced technology, the importance of the quality function will continue to increase. It must now rank equally with the other functions such as design, production, marketing and sales. All of these functions have an important part to play in achieving quality. A total quality system has been described suitable for a technology and process based industry such as electronic components. This system provides for the continuing improvement of processes, products and quality costs within the unit. There is still scope for further reduction of quality costs as processes with improved capability and control are introduced. This can be achieved with improvement in product performance, conformance and reliability. There is a need to create a greater awareness of the importance of quality improvement at the shop-floor level. Quality circles giving greater responsibility to the shop foreman and increased scope to the production operator and the inspector may be the way forward. The quality management techniques described conform to the requirements of the BS 9000/CECC systems for electronic components of assessed quality. These systems provide broadly based assurance over the complete range of environments for which the component is designed. They are playing a major part in improving electronic components and the benefits are now being seen at the equi- ment level.

Published in:

IEE Proceedings A - Physical Science, Measurement and Instrumentation, Management and Education - Reviews  (Volume:127 ,  Issue: 6 )