Original Date: 07/18/1994
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Information : Quality Management System
The Mason & Hanger (M&H) Quality Management System (QMS) helps efficiently utilize resources by graphically identifying opportunities for quality improvement or cost reduction to managers and technical personnel. The QMS is a mainframe computer-based quality information system designed and programmed by M&H personnel to provide automated information reporting support. The original defect tracking portions of the QMS (statistical process control, quality engineering, and short/long term product quality tracking) were first put into operation in 1989 with additional major capabilities in cost of quality, supplier management, material review, corrective action tracking, audit planning, and performance measurement metrics implemented in 1991.
The QMS uses statistical tools (such as statistical process control, Pareto analyses, trend data, and P-charts) for the analysis of production data to provide engineering and management focus for process improvements. QMS data is available throughout the plant, with approximately 500 terminals being located in the production areas to allow for data entry and retrieval. The QMS tracks over 3300 characteristics daily, and can provide over 400 screens of data or reports.
The QMS has helped M&H improve a variety of operations including supplier management, quality engineering, audit planning, and short- and long-term product quality tracking. Supplier performance is reviewed not only at incoming inspection, but also in terms of additional difficulties encountered throughout the entire production process - allowing for accurate determination of lowest total cost (best value) suppliers. The time required for preparation of monthly and lot-end quality reports has decreased from one to two weeks down to less than two hours. By helping close the informational loop on review of non-conforming material, appropriate corrective actions are taken on out-of-spec materials and processes - resulting in a reduced number of required material review board actions. The QMS maintains the status of over 450 standard operating procedures, manufacturing instructions (MIs), quality control standards, and administrative practices and procedures. The system tracks over 7,000 gages for recalibration dates, and adjusts calibration intervals based on historical performance trends. Short- and long-term product quality is also tracked by the QMS - short term quality consists of the latest 32 actual production shifts for any given product, and long term quality data covers the past four years.
The QMS provides M&H engineering and management with a valuable tool that helps keep the organization focused on quality. It assures that details such as corrective action responses, recertifications, and gage recalls are not forgotten. It efficiently covers all quality areas and allows management to apply scarce human and financial resources based on factual statistical data, instead of opinion. In the five years that the QMS has been in use at Iowa Army Ammunition Plant (IAAAP), scrap costs per direct labor hour have decreased from $7/hour to $1/hour, on-time contract deliveries have increased from 76% to 97%, and total quality cost savings have accumulated to $18.5M.
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