Quality leaders face millions of challenges a day and have to make decisions that can quickly turn into quality errors costing auto manufacturing companies time, money and a competitive edge. Many of these companies still use paper forms that take time to check and double-check to ensure teams adhere to critical process compliance so that quality issues can be minimized. However, paper processes can be filled with mistakes because there are often hundreds of items employees must check through without truly being engaged in the process or evaluating the criteria, leading to quality issues.
Boosting product quality is one of the top objectives for every auto manufacturing company, but it can be a struggle without timely, accurate data. In a market where quality is a key indicator for success, leaders have an opportunity to improve quality control and layered process and supplier audits by switching from outdated paper processing to digital connected worker solutions.
Benefits of digital connected worker solutions for quality management & audits
1. Unlock critical data at the earliest point possible
The last thing a quality leader wants is a defective product, leading to wasted product, time, and money. Connected worker solutions make it easy and possible to capture real-time data and audit trails from frontline workers, which is the key to identifying defects at their earliest point. Paper quality management systems (QMS) and layered process audits can easily lose critical points where quality is not being met, or assistance is needed. Digital solutions highlight valuable data in-the-moment, delivering immediate insight into problematic areas or processes that need to be improved. As a result, issues are discovered faster, meaning product defects can be captured before they make it out the door.
2. Ensure process compliance
Digital mobile solutions that collect real-time data from frontline workers help ensure compliance by engaging the worker. When workers are engaged in the processes and procedures tied to achieving and maintaining quality standards it leads to better quality outcomes. Solutions that deliver guidance and prompts in real-time to ensure work is executed properly removes the guesswork and take workers through the correct path. The guided workflow experiences help keep everyone engaged and involved so compliance is achieved. These flexible connected worker solutions also safeguard supplier quality by providing proactive quality requirements as well as safety and operational procedures through remote supervision.
3. Maintain accountability at all levels
With paper quality processes, it’s hard to know exactly how to put an end to inefficiencies and defects. Instead of falling into a cycle of manually tracking quality problems, digital solutions help hold everyone accountable for the final product. Immediate data analysis across the organization makes it easy to know who’s responsible for different aspects of the workflow and track whether those crucial items have been completed. This real-time insight into the data allows for quality leaders to take immediate action.
4. Ultimately reduce the cost of quality (COQ)
It’s well-known that the cost of quality is high. The ASQ states that some organizations have a COQ of up to 40% of their sales revenue. Poor quality in a company tends to be in the 10%-15% range of sales revenue. Implementing digital connected worker solutions allows frontline workers to become quality leaders themselves, capturing data in a meaningful, actionable way. This is key to driving improvements in quality and process compliance, which ultimately will reduce the cost of quality.
Adopting connected worker solutions supports the production of high-quality products. Understanding long-term patterns, trends and early reports of quality issues will help drive continuous improvement in your company.
About the author: Robin Fleming is the co-founder and CEO of Anvl, an award-winning software company helping companies unlock real-time data to improve product quality, safety and productivity. Anvl's easy-to-use connected worker platform has collected over 11 million leading data points and routinely sees over 90% engagement from their user base.