Three Proven Methods to Ensure Quality Maintenance across Supply Chain


Product recalls have become a major concern for industries worldwide. From the food industry to the automotive sector, hardly a week or two passes by when the sourcing consultants of respective industries do not have to be caught by quality issues witnessed by their customers. Rigorous surveys before the COVID-19 happened have surveyed manufacturers responsible for servicing beverages and life science and found to their surprise that they have experienced a product recall within the past few years of their career. The study revealed some higher figures for food manufacturers who were charged for supplying even inferior quality products by their customers. COVID-19 has only worsened the situation where extensive manufacturing inspections and supplier audits were lawfully caught up due to decreased-scale on-site operations and work from the home decree. Less frequent inspections are the one supremely responsible factor that has spawned other potential product issues which manufacturers are unmindful about. Once the oversight inspections resume, a drastic spike in product recall is expected to be witnessed.

While the diminishing product quality continues to worry manufacturing sectors, there is still a way out. The quality control subcontractors can have their concerted focus on reviewing quality management issues across the supply chain and logistics over and over again before ensuring products in the hands of their customers. So, what are the ways of escape? This context will take you through some of the best quality control measures adopted and utilized by manufacturers across the globe.

Read on to click on these measures while you perform your quality checks and effectively reduce waste, product defects, variations across the supply chain.

Measuring supplier standards and performance

With everyone being engrossed to work from the comforts of your home, you must be overwhelmed with the worry about how to carry out negotiations with your suppliers. You need not worry anymore. Manufacturers can deploy cloud ERP to notify suppliers about their specific quality and product requirements. The ERP solution enables manufacturers to showcase the modern versions of the organization’s quality standards, policies, and implemented procedures. With this technically advanced, easy-to-use tool, manufacturers can seamlessly communicate with the suppliers regarding non-conformances, and effectively document the related scraps, downtime costs, sorting, and freights. Based on how the suppliers perform and if they are capable of providing defect-free products to the consumers, the organizations can also use scorecard features to rate the suppliers’ performances. This can contribute to strengthen the supplier-buyer relationship and control the entire picture from manufacturing to the shipping status of how the supplier performs.

Deploying this solution will allow manufacturers to conduct real-time inspections over the supplier, realistically keep an eye on the supplier’s performance, and make sure that no suppliers can become deceitful with their manufacturing process.

Pinpointing supplier problems

A complex supply network as evidenced nowadays is likely to develop problems if not maintained and monitored regularly. But pinpointing the issues early is the secret to finding long-term solutions more effectively and quickly. Nevertheless, a quality control subcontractor cannot pinpoint issues early without extensive visibility into the vendor operations and collaborating with their working strategies. What these subcontractors can do is deploy ERP solutions in the quality control process to pinpoint the problems and isolate them, negotiate with the vendors about the problems, and minimize product recalls extensively. The ERP solution works independently by signaling automatic notifications to both the manufacturers and suppliers about an identified problem within the supply chain, thus informing them to take necessary actions. ERP identifies and creates a problem case, notifies suppliers to respond to related cases and associated cost recoveries, who can then negotiate with the manufacturers and either approve or reject the case. This can ensure a reduced-scale product recall and a positive impact on the overall product quality and cost.

Improved supplier communication

Manufacturers who rely on several parts of the supply chain need to evaluate the subsystems and components from suppliers and frame a clear strategy for better compliance with those standards. Manufacturers can deploy the Production Part Approval process that authorizes them to make required changes in the manufacturing process and notify suppliers of the same. They can also put Supplier Corrective Action Requests to action to conduct a root-cause problem analysis, risk analysis, and corrective analysis. This can ensure extensive visibility to anything that is out of specification both to the manufacturers and suppliers. This can centralize visibility into supplier performance through quantitative and qualitative measures, notify suppliers of customer complaints, provide transparency over the qualification process, and in turn, strengthen the supplier communications with manufacturers.

The final effective role for the sourcing consultants to play is to expand supplier quality management’s role from the team to everyone who is in touch with the supplier. This can strongly ally proper supplier quality and reduce product recalls.

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