The Current State of Quality Survey identifies "Problem Solving" as the number one concern in the industry. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) data reports that more vehicles were recalled in 2015 that in any other year in the industry's history.
A fundamental building block for problem solving and field issue management is traceability. Traceability helps us narrow down the population of "at risk" product. It helps us "book-end" the beginning and end of a problem so that we know how many suspect parts exist. There currently isn't any single reference manual on the subject for the industry to use.
The industry would benefit from one consistent application of traceability requirements throughout the final customer supply chain including OEM's. It is critical that all parties in the supply chain, from raw material, through multiple tiers of the supply chain, and including the OEM's, implement improved traceability tools/systems. Otherwise, great traceability is possible at the point of manufacture, and it could be lost by a next in line customer that is not aware of the requirements and expectations for the product. An improvement in traceability capabilities throughout the supply chain supports improvement of containment, problem solving, and management of engineering changes.
The Traceability work group is working on developing a document that will highlight best practices and showcase applications/case studies of latest technology solutions.
Program Director: Scott A. Gray - AIAG - (248) 358-3570