AS9100: an opportunity, not a threat

management
management

With the new Revision D just published in the US, TEC Transnational’s Dr David Scrimshire looks at the impact the new AS9100:2016 quality management system will have on the aerospace supply chain.

The devil’s in the detail as the aerospace industry prepares for the new AS9100:2016 industry standard awards – but what will they mean for you and your suppliers?

The International Aerospace Quality Group (IAQG) announced in June that the new standards will be published from October to December this year – six months behind schedule.

And there are already worries it may leave some companies struggling with the IAQG’s 15th June 2017 deadline to comply. From this date onwards all third-party certifications, re-certifications and surveillance audits will use the new AS9100 series of standards.

But here at TEC Transnational we want to stress that this is an opportunity rather than a threat. The new high level structure imposed by ISO 9001:2015 provides a more logical arrangement of clauses, making it easier for the additional aerospace/ defence requirements to be incorporated.

New clauses to address risk based thinking, product safety, ethical behaviour, counterfeit parts and human factors, backed up by mandatory calls for right-first-time and on-time-in-full performance, will ensure that suppliers implement formal processes to address these requirements. These processes, and their results, will be audited on an-ongoing basis by the Certification Bodies (CBs).

The revised standard also simplifies the complex supply chains by standardising the management system for the delivery of services, parts and components – badly needed in an increasingly global marketplace.

Other benefits to support the aviation, space and defence Primes and Tier 1 suppliers include the mandatory inclusion of customer-specific QMS requirements, and when applicable, regulatory requirements. Again, auditable by the CBs.

With everyone in the supply chain adhering to the same standard it should mean a leaner and more structured system with fewer delays and mistakes.

More joined-up thinking

And with every company in the chain working to the same ‘set of rules’ it will make communication easier and consequently make everything safer and more efficient.

The aerospace and defence industries have embraced AS9100 as a critical tool for improving quality and delivery performance.

These sectors strive to demonstrate high levels of safety and quality, but with increasingly complex and global supply chains the new AS9100 series demonstrate a real industry-wide commitment to quality with a capital Q!

TEC developed a practical AS9100:2016 course which explains how to implement the new and revised requirements
TEC developed a practical AS9100:2016 course which explains how to implement the new and revised requirements

Other benefits include access to the best practices of the aerospace industry, such as new product introduction (NPI) to reduce operational risk. It is likely that the soon-to-be-published standard AS9145 (Aerospace APQP & PPAP) will further standardise the NPI process, and is likely to be imposed throughout the supply chain.

And in an industry with such high customer expectations and strict contractual requirements the new standards will allow companies to future-proof their products, systems and practises.

All standards go through regular updates to bring them in line with industry changes and developments in technology and they are being revised to respond to marketplace needs and to keep them aligned to ISO 9001:2015, which was updated last year.

 

The IAQG is also updating Online Aerospace Supplier Information System (OASIS) database to further improve the sharing of information between customers and their suppliers.

The delayed release of the AS9100 series significantly squeezes the timeframe for aerospace companies to prepare for these significant changes, including changes imposed by the new ISO 9001:2015 standard. Remember that the transition period will end on 15th September 2018 – and from 15th June 2017 onwards all CB audits will use the AS9100:2016 series.

However, once these standards are applied across the aviation and defence industries around the world the IAQG believes everyone will see the benefits.

It’s standardising a lot of very complex material, tightening up supply chain procedures and ultimately making everything clearer and more transparent with an equal emphasis on conformity and performance.

The new standards will also give aerospace companies an opportunity to review their current processes to achieve sustainable performance improvements and increase the quality of their services or products.

The IAQG publication dates for the AS9100:2016 series of standards in the three sectors (American, European and Asian) are: AS/EN9100:2016 – October 2016; AS/EN9110:2016 – November 2016; AS/EN9120:2016 – December 2016.

The standard specifying requirements for the third-party certification audit process (AS/EN9101:2016) will also be published in November 2016.

A one-stop shop

TEC has developed a suite of courses to help including a practical one-day “Heads-up for AS9100:2016” course which explains how to implement the new and revised requirements. We have also developed a one-stop shop to help aerospace companies prepare for the new standards.

This training covers the requirements to satisfy the forthcoming AS9100 changes and ensure that suppliers are proficient in operating the additional techniques required by the industry. Suppliers can tailor their training and pick and mix which courses they need to go on in order to meet their customers’ requirements.

In addition, TEC’s CQI/IRCA-certified two-day ISO 9001:2015 Auditor Transition Training course based on AS9100:2016 provides existing IRCA-certified Lead Auditors (and Principal Auditors) with the knowledge and skills to develop new process-based auditing skills and add more value to organisations.

We have recently celebrated the 4,000th engineer and aerospace specialist who successfully completed our courses. We evaluate our students learning and at the end of the course students are issued with a certificate that is both nationally and internationally recognised. Our courses not only enhance the student’s individual CV but also boosts their company’s capabilities in the eyes of customers, both current and prospective.

I am sure that once these new standards have become embedded within the industry we will see a more capable, more competent industry. This is vital to ensure aerospace becomes more efficient, and continues to grow at its current rate.

For more details and updates, visit TEC’s “On-line forum – AS9100:2016 series of standards” at https://www.tectransnational.com/support-and-collaboration/on-line or join our LinkedIn group https://www.linkedin.com/groups/8446880/profile.

www.tectransnational.com

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