4 Steps to Exceptional Quality Conformance for Electronic Components
November 8th, 2018
Quality is a fundamental business imperative in the electronics manufacturing industry. But achieving exceptional quality goes beyond simply checking the boxes of certifications and inspections. The art of exceptional quality starts at the beginning of the process and ends with a satisfied partner, every time.
Counterfeit and non-conforming parts represent one of the biggest threats that suppliers must acknowledge and address to ensure superior quality conformance in electronic components. Combating this evolving threat requires innovation paired with expertise.
Let’s put numbers on the scope of the problem. ERAI, a global information services organization that monitors, investigates, and reports issues affecting the global electronics supply chain, reported 361 non-conforming or suspected counterfeit parts from January-June 2017. ERAI posits several causes for the lower numbers in 2017, including improved anti-counterfeiting procedures during the procurement process.
But this declining trend is not holding for 2018. From January-June 2018, ERAI reported 462 parts. EPSNews notes that counterfeits historically increase during component shortages. And the impacts are significant — counterfeit and non-conforming products threaten the security of the global supply chain.
With the shortages likely to rise in 2018 and beyond, it’s important to consider how your partners are addressing counterfeit and non-conforming parts. To that end, we’ve identified 4 critical steps for eliminating non-conforming electronic components.
4 Steps to Ensure Exceptional Quality Conformance
1. Supplier Selections and Ranking
Non-conformance can come up at any point in the supply chain. Incoming parts represent a critical link for ensuring conformance. A robust supplier selection process indicates that your distributor starts their process with a clean slate on conformance issues. To start with the highest possible quality components, we take an active approach with our vendor rating process. Key value drivers are employed to track our suppliers. These value drivers include product conformance, order accuracy, on-time delivery, and transactional volume. We acquire metrics up front in all of these categories. The result? Closely tracked in-bound materials that ensure a strong starting point for our process.
Certifications are more than just a box-checking exercise when it comes to conformance and counterfeit identification. Adherence to the requirements of conformance-focused certifications like AS9120B and ISO 9001 is imperative. To excel in this industry, suppliers need to embrace not only the methods for achieving certification but also the spirit behind them.
For example, our quality management systems in Austin, Amsterdam, and Singapore are all certified to AS9120 and ISO 9001, achieving the most comprehensive level of Quality Management System certification available. We meet the requirements for certification in all areas of our quality management processes — from purchasing and sales, to inspection, storage, distribution, and overall management processes.
Velocity Electronics is also certified to AS6081, the foremost fraudulent/counterfeit components avoidance and mitigation standard. This confirms our commitment to quality and ensures our customers we have the tools and processes in place to protect them from fraudulent and counterfeit parts. We are one of only a few distributors that have qualified for this prestigious certification at multiple locations. Even fewer distributors hold this certification on multiple continents.
3. Material Inspections
Material inspections represent a critical point for counterfeit and non-conformance detection. Taking an out-of-the box approach to materials handling may work for some companies, but we’ve chosen a holistic approach. The Velocity Inspection Protocol (VIP) combines sophisticated equipment with exceptional quality professionals. The result? Velocity has processed more than 1 billion parts with zero quality conformance issues. The numbers speak for themselves.
4. Quality Material Handling
If you are looking for a true end-to-end quality process, take a close look at a distributor’s material handling process. Robust inventory control systems indicate a focus on speed and accuracy. We lead the industry with inventory control systems that include vertical automated storage and retrieval carousels. Quality control checks continue to happen at critical phases of the process, with the use of bar-coded labels to ensure accuracy. Our IDCs are located across the globe, guaranteeing the most efficient routing for our partners.
Eliminating Non-Conformance and Counterfeit through Excellence
Excellence in electronic components goes beyond labels and box-checking. Velocity uses innovative and creative processes to achieve a zero non-conformance record. With the threat of counterfeit and non-conforming products on the rise, we must all stay alert to new challenges and partner with the best to overcome them. If you would like more detail on how we eliminate non-conformance and counterfeit parts in our process, please reach out to us.
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