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Robert Parsons

Standards

Update on AS9100 Revision C

What it means to your company

Published: Monday, March 1, 2010 - 06:00

The AS9100C standard (also referred to as AS9100:2009 and AS9100 Rev C) has been published since January 2009. You are not alone if you are confused about the delay in being audited to this standard. Like you, most companies seeking registration to AS9100 are in the process of trying to figure out how and when to roll out this standard within their organization and the following information should bring clarity to this subject.

If the standard is published, why can’t I get certified now?

Before any company can be certified to the AS9100C standard, the aerospace industry must complete these milestones:

The AS9104-1 standard must be published (expected spring 2010).

The AS9101D standard (checklist) must be published (expected spring 2010).

The AS9100C/AS9101D training course for certification body auditors (the registrar’s auditors) must be developed, vetted, and made available for use by certification bodies (expected by April 30, 2010).

Certification body auditors must attend this course, pass it, submit their applications to RABQSA and get approved (expected to happen during the summer and fall of 2010).

The registrar must submit an application to ANAB and then be audited before registrars can be accredited to perform audits to AS9100C (expected to happen early summer of 2010).

 

Once all of the above tasks are completed, the registrar will be able to conduct audits to the requirements of AS9100C.

As to when your company must complete the transition to this standard, all AS9100 audits after July 1, 2011, must be to AS9100C. On July 1, 2012, AS9100B will cease to exist and all registrations for AS9100 must be to revision C of the standard.

What does that mean for your company?

In light of the timelines described above, what this means for companies seeking AS9100 registration is this:

Companies that want to upgrade during a re-assessment or surveillance audit between now and mid 2010 will be audited to AS9100B.

Companies that want to upgrade during a re-assessment or surveillance audit between mid-2010 and the end of 2010 may be able to be audited to AS9100C, but that depends on the availability of auditors that have taken the AS9100C course.

Companies that want to upgrade during a re-assessment or surveillance audit after January 2011 should be able to be audited to AS9100C without any impediments.

All audits after July 1, 2011, must be to AS9100C.

All AS9100-registered companies must be registered to the AS9100C standard by July 1, 2012.

 

If your company is currently registered to AS9100

Once you make the decision to upgrade to AS9100C during either a surveillance or triannual re-assessment audit, additional audit days will be required above and beyond those of your surveillance or re-assessment audit. The reason for the added days is that in addition to the regularly scheduled required audit days (surveillance or re-assessment), there must be additional time to assess your quality system against the new requirements of AS9100C. You should contact your registrar to determine how many additional audit days are required for your company to upgrade to this new standard. Also contact your registrar if your company is currently registered to a nonaerospace-related standard such as ISO 9001, or not registered to any standard at all, to determine the number of audit days required to upgrade your company to AS9100C.

What should you do next?

Before your company transitions to the AS9100C standard, you must complete the following steps (at a minimum):

Implement the requirements of AS9100C into your quality management system

Perform a gap analysis to identify potential problem areas

Verify the implementation of your revised quality system by:

  • Conducting internal audits to this new standard
  • Conducting a management review of your revised quality management system
  • Ensuring appropriate personnel are competent on these new requirements
  • Identifying and implementing corrective actions so that your quality system addresses and adheres to the new requirements

 

A word of caution

The AS9100B and AS9100C standards are very similar, but there are some differences. The AS9100C standard adds many new requirements and introduces a number of new terms that weren’t in AS9100B, while it also omits a number of requirements. For example, the requirement for an organization to “periodically validate test reports for raw material” is no longer required by revision C of the standard and for those AS9100-registered organizations that want to get a head start on revision C of the standard, these omissions can be problematic.

The reason this approach can cause a problem is that many companies that are currently registered to revision B of the standard have begun the process of implementing the additional requirements of revision C, a recommended course of action. Care must be taken though, because as mentioned above, not all of the requirements of revision B are also included in revision C. Therefore, those requirements omitted from revision C must still be adhered to until your company has successfully passed an AS9100C audit by the registrar. Only then can you drop these requirements if you so desire. Requirement information can be found at www.sae.org/iaqg.

Going forward and at your earliest convenience please let your registrar or auditor know your intentions regarding an upgrade to AS9100C. In the interim, most registrars recommend that you begin familiarizing yourselves with the requirements of AS9100C.

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About The Author

Robert Parsons’s picture

Robert Parsons

Robert Parsons is the aerospace and defense business unit director at the management system registrar, National Quality Assurance (NQA).