How To Determine Your Suppliers' Capability

December 29, 2015

Most supplier quality defects come from manufacturing processes that do not have the capability to produce the desired repeatable outcome. For example, you can manufacture a part within specification on a 40-year-old Bridgeport machine and a 50-year-old Cincinnati Lathe, but it's highly unlikely that the process will be repeatable.

While the First Article Inspection process will show that this single part can be made within specification, it will provide no insight to the true capability or quality of the supplier. In order to make sure a supplier has ongoing, predictable capability, 20 or more measurements may be required for each established specification.

To aid customers in interpreting this information as well as their suppliers' performance, Net-Inspect generates a capability score based on the sigma zone (+/- 1–6) where each measurement is located. The closer each measurement is to the target nominal, and the smaller the overall variance in the process, the better the score they receive. The higher your supplier's score, the more they can guarantee repeatable production.

This new method of analysis, which functions similar to a FICO credit report, lets you drill down to any level of manufacturing, from entire companies to individual features. This gives you the ability to, for example, analyze a part in detail and determine which features are causing the part's overall score to be lower than it should be. The same data is also available to your suppliers, so you can easily provide them with direct input on how to improve their manufacturing process.

The precision of this capability score allows customers to make uniquely informed decisions. By using Net-Inspect to provide identical inspection requirements to multiple suppliers, receive their measurements back, and generate a score for each company, you can effortlessly select the appropriate supplier for every part. No guesswork - just real solutions based on real data.

supply chain management capability chart

The image above represents the analysis you could use to determine supplier capability. Please contact [email protected] or head to the Contact Us page to request a free demo!