Regardless of services offered or products manufactured, there have always been certain universal quality management standards implemented by the world’s most successful companies. At the center of these standards was a deceptively simple concept: maximizing customer satisfaction.
For most of history, these standards went largely unwritten – a common endpoint reached through trial and error by businesses working independently of one another. Some companies would become defined by their commitment to quality and consistency, while others would struggle to meet their customer’s expectations and become lost to history. With roots dating back to the Industrial Revolution and the formation of the United Nations after WWII, the Geneva-based International Organization of Standardization (ISO) was formed to mitigate this discrepancy by creating a voluntary, consensus-based set of quality management guidelines that would help support innovation and industrial progress throughout the world.
As a proud holder of both ISO 9001 and the aerospace-specific AS9120 certification, EDX Supply Chain Solutions is honored to be a part of this storied heritage.
Today, while ISO produces specific standards for nearly every industry, the core essence of what ISO represents is most clearly represented in its 9001 offering. In 2014, 1,138,155 business worldwide possessed an ISO 9001 certification.
An important distinction to make when understanding ISO 9001 is that it’s not a quality management procedure in itself, but rather a broad framework that ensures the procedures a business has chosen to implement are upheld on all levels. The checks and balances a mom and pop pizzeria uses to successfully fulfill orders, for example, are going to be different than the ones used by a large-scale circuit board manufacturer or supply chain partner. It is up to each individual business to establish the processes that best suit their needs, but what ISO 9001 does is ensure these processes are adequate in maximizing efficiency – while minimizing risk for both the business and the customer.
ISO 9001 also gives businesses the means to properly maintain accountability across all business channels, as well as a clear platform to assess any areas that require improvement. To ensure our strict self-imposed quality standards are consistently met at EDX, for example, sales, purchasing, warehouse, and quality assurance departments are all internally audited quarterly, and externally audited annually by TÜV SÜD America Inc. – a business-to-business engineering services firm renowned as a world leader in safety testing and certification services. If any downward trend in performance metrics is detected, immediate actions are taken to determine both the cause and the optimal corrective action moving forward.
The implementation of ISO 9001 as AS9120 has had a profound impact on EDX’s daily operations from the very beginning. Every process we internally implement – including service order terms, vendor authentication, and training procedures – is meticulously monitored, documented, archived, and analyzed to help deliver on the high expectations we set for ourselves.
Paying attention to such details obviously benefits our OEM and EMS Provider customers in a variety of ways, but most importantly it establishes a clear, objective precedence that proves the services we offer meet and exceed all expectations. The trust that we have long built with our customers is earned, not given – and every component we warehouse, every last time buy we initiate on an OEM’s behalf, every life cycle report we write as part of our BOM Monitoring Solution strives to only strengthen these bonds.