With the recent adoption and mandatory flow down of AS9145 across the aerospace supply chain, many of our customers and their suppliers face a mounting challenge. The daunting prospect of adopting a new standard, complete with its cultural and methodological demands, requires strategic thinking and solutions and in reality value add partners with a focus and track record on Supplier Performance Management.
At Verify recognize that the A&D supply chain is a very diverse population with a truly global footprint. The challenges of one tier in the chain are going to be vastly different further down the chain, but all levels are critical.
Many of the initial/known challenges are discussed in our last blog located HERE
With our unique positioning in the landscape, we garnish a consistent stream of feedback from all tiers on this subject most every day.
The number one challenge we hear?
Where do we start? What do we do?
Now that the standard is becoming more prevalent and the flow down requirements are becoming a reality, our customers, their suppliers and our associate organizations are all looking for solutions in APQP education, PPAP deliverables and deployment.
The Primes and upper tiers of the chain have invested time and resources to managing this flow down and making sure that this investment pays off. After all the ultimate goal is quality products delivered on time and that’s a goal for the industry as a whole.
But the adage …”well it worked in Automotive so it will work in Aerospace” is great in theory and should ring true. But it’s really all dependent on the buy in from an entire organization, that supports and believes concurrent engineering and the other principles that made the standard successful. Those same elements and principles are invaluable to Automotive to this day.
So what kind of APQP Solutions increase the likelihood of success?
Taking into account these truths we designed solutions that can be tailored to the prime’s directives and flow them down the chain to address the challenges of buy in, company size, capability, resources etc. We tailor our solution for each company and their specific deliverables.
In these preliminary stages of a full culture shift, some organizations do not choose to adhere to the entire standard out of the gate and instead choose to slice out the more important elements that are relevant to their quality output.
In those cases, we spend time building a successful plan around those objectives and a delivery method that is engaging and palatable but still challenges the stakeholders to implement.
We can engage with any tier in the chain and begin the consulting and planning sessions that ultimately include and explore the accountability of all the stakeholders to make the adoption of AS9145 a success. We start with a 1-day executive APQP overview class with an APQP/PPAP Subject matter expert to ensure that a top down initiative is supported. One of the most common challenges we hear from the general worker population when trying to implement this methodology is that “there is no management buy in” or “how do we know the C-suite is committed to this?” There is no success rate in APQP without real organizational buy in and concurrent engineering.
Next comes the 5-day practitioner class for a more hands on experience that includes process walks of real aerospace parts. The course is designed to be engaging and challenging and really set the foundational knowledge of APQP/PPAP so that all stakeholders in the process can speak the same language. Communication is integral.
In many cases the lower tier suppliers might need assistance with creating their first PPAP. Verify will deploy a tiger team to make sure the deliverables are being met to the standard or their customer flow downs. Ongoing surveillance and consulting is always available to keep suppliers on track.
In a 929 billion dollar industry where quality and delivery are the ultimate goals, we at Verify are starting to see the measurable success from the adoption of AS9145 throughout the A&D supply chain.
Verify, Inc. is a Supplier Performance Management company.
Hank Hagedoorn is Director, Business Development & Marketing for Verify, Inc.