Content By Quality Digest

Gleb Tsipursky’s picture

By: Gleb Tsipursky

So many companies are shifting their employees to working from home to address the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic. Yet they’re not considering the potential quality disasters that can occur as a result of this transition.

An example of this is what one of my coaching clients experienced more than a year before the pandemic hit. Myron is the risk and quality management executive in a medical services company with about 600 employees. He was one of the leaders tasked by his company’s senior management team with shifting the company’s employees to a work-from-home setup, due to rising rents on their office building.

Specifically, Myron led the team that managed risk and quality issues associated with the transition for all 600 employees to telework, due to his previous experience in helping small teams of three to six people in the company transition to working from home in the past. The much larger number of people who had many more diverse roles they had to assist now was proving to be a challenge. So was the short amount of time available to this project, which was only four weeks, and resulted from a failure in negotiation with the landlord of the office building.

Buehler’s picture

By: Buehler

(Buehler: Lake Bluff, IL) -- Buehler, an ITW Company and a global manufacturer of metallographic equipment and consumables presents “Fastener Metallography – Guidelines to Quality Metallurgical Analysis,” a complimentary webinar for novices to experts.

Fasteners (rivets, screws, nuts, and bolts) are the small but mighty important components found in a vast range of applications. They are widely used in automotive, aerospace, appliances (white goods), and in construction projects such as bridges among others. They are important in manufactured products because a vast majority of components employ fastening technology during assembly to maintain and guarantee product integrity over its service lifetime.

This webinar will explore metallurgical investigation of fastener components and related materials by highlighting preparation guidelines for the stages of fastener production process. Buehler experts will share the best practices to adopt, while following strict ASTM and/or ISO standards for fastener evaluation due to their safety critical use in aerospace, automotive, and other related industries.

Tom Taormina’s picture

By: Tom Taormina

Each article in this series presents new tools for increasing return on investment, enhancing customer satisfaction, creating process excellence, and driving risk from an ISO 9001:2015-based quality management system. They will help implementers evolve quality management to overall business management. In this article we look at the clauses and subclauses of Section 7 of the standard.

Clause 7—Support

Clause 7 is an interesting montage of people, infrastructure, environmental issues, metrology, knowledge, competence, awareness, communications, and documentation. There is no cohesive theme as there is in Clause 8—Operation. So we will look at one subclause at a time.

7.1.1 General Resources

7.1.1 and excellence
It is an oversimplification to state that the organization will provide the resources to maintain and continually improve the quality management system. Clauses 4.3—Determining the scope of the quality management system, and 4.4—Quality management system and its processes both require that adequate resources be available.

Tips for working from home

As Quality Digest’s Ryan Day writes in his article “Embracing Work-From-Home: Insights for employers” the recent shelter-in-place orders have made work-from-home the new normal, and some organizations are struggling with the transition to working as a remote team. But there are companies that have been doing so for quite some time, and we can benefit from their experience.

Here are some tips that you can find in Ryan’s article and his interview with Eric Doster, CEO of Dozuki, and Jennifer Dennard, COO of Range. They have been working within remote teams for years.

Celia Paulsen’s picture

By: Celia Paulsen

Nobody likes business to be slow. If you’re in a fast-paced world like manufacturing, seeing your machines or employees idle can drive a person insane. If you’re used to your production line working to capacity and suddenly business slows down, it can be a frustrating time.

When I was in the U.S. Army, we used our downtime to train and clean. On one occasion, we spent nearly two weeks waiting for a change of orders. By the end of the first week, every weapon, every desk, and every blade of grass was spotless. There was nothing left to clean, so we cleaned it all over again!

Over time, I learned that downtime can actually provide a good opportunity to refocus before driving forward again. It offers time to take inventory, get a little creative, and do some renovation, literally and figuratively. My personal downtime to-do list includes organizing my papers, redesigning my closet, playing with my 3D printer, replacing my stair treads, fixing that one light switch, learning something I’ll soon forget, and though you may laugh, improving my cybersecurity posture.

It’s true; I’m a cybersecurity geek. I’ve been a cybersecurity researcher at NIST since 2011 and am now detailed to NIST MEP as the cybersecurity services specialist.

L.S. Starrett Co.’s picture

By: L.S. Starrett Co.

(The L.S. Starrett Company: Athol, MA) -- The L.S. Starrett Company, a global manufacturer of precision hand tools and gages, metrology systems, and more, is offering the new MetLogix Mx200 Digital Readout (DRO) for its broad line of rugged, accurate and reliable optical comparators. Fully featured and simple to use, the DRO combines an intuitive user experience with current touchscreen conventions and a wide range of functionality.

The Mx200 is a shop-hardened digital readout. A sealed rubber keypad and durable powder-coated enclosure provide lasting performance in any environment from the shop floor to the quality control lab. Capable of optical-edge detection and crosshair measurement, Mx200 probing options are spontaneous. The exclusive EdgeLogic feature enables gesture-driven control of start and end measurement commands, minimizing the need to interact with the digital readout directly. Users simply cross the same edge twice to start and end measurements.

Jason Chester’s picture

By: Jason Chester

Even in the midst of the pandemic, product safety and quality remain critical. For many manufacturers, complex quality management systems and procedures stand in the way of agile responses and effective operational optimization. Cloud technology provides the means to dramatically simplify quality management.

If you’re like many quality pros and manufacturing leaders right now, you’re working crazy hours, possibly on a different schedule or from a remote location. You’re struggling to find new ways to get the data that operators are collecting on the plant floor and support workers as they adapt to rapidly changing demands. You’re also likely scrambling to coordinate with your plant managers and create custom reports for your executive teams.

It’s a challenging time, and if you’re lucky, you’re keeping on top of the unique demands this time has put on you. But even in the middle of this sprint, product safety and quality remain paramount.

Marposs’s picture

By: Marposs

(Marposs: Auburn Hills, Michigan) -- Marposs, a world leader in measurement and process monitoring technologies, has announced the availability of its Automatic Die Match (ADM) option, which automatically controls the die match in form or thread rolling if the dies are not aligned, as an option on its Brankamp X5 in-process monitoring systems. The ADM feature helps the operator find an optimum setting during set-up for dynamic operation at nominal machine speed. After setup, the Brankamp X5 system continuously monitors the rolling process, detecting roll backs and automatically controlling the ADM if the dies are not aligned.

In cold forming, the insertion of the blank into the forming tools plays a crucial role in process stability and reducing the potential of failures. This is particularly true in thread or form rolling with flat dies where the insertion of the blanks into the rolling tools significantly determines the quality of the forming. With ADM, the system transmits positioning information to the machine control system in the event there are changes of the vertical force signals. If the vertical force falls below the specified limit value, Brankamp X5 generates a corresponding warning message, and the adjustment is stopped and only activated again when it is exceeded again.

Tracking Covid-19

We look at several interesting articles on Covid-19 that Quality Digest has run in the past few weeks.

"Tracking Covid-19" series by Don Wheeler, Al Phadt, and Kathryn Whyte.
A look at Covid-19 using a semilog chart.

"Break the Curve and Keep It Broken" by Bill Levinson
A mathy look at R-naught and the impact of various mitigations on Covid-19

"Four Ways Companies Can Support Their Workers During the Coronavirus Crisis" by Paula Caligiuri and Helen De Cieri from The Conversation.
Four research-backed ways companies can promote employees' health and well-being during this crisis.

ASQ’s picture

By: ASQ

(ASQ: Milwaukee) -- The ASQ Inspection Division has announced the recipients of the 2020 H. James Harrington Scholarship.

This fund scholarship was created to help ASQ division members, their family or friends defray the costs associated with college expenses. Scholarship funds are dispersed to one or more deserving students in the spring of each year.

The ASQ Inspection Division’s Scholarship Committee and Division’s Management Committee congratulate all the recipients on this noteworthy accomplishment and wish them the very best in their future academic studies.

$1,500 Christoph Bernas, Carnegie, Pennsylvania

Chris will be graduating from Bishop Canevin High School in Pittsburgh in May 2020, and then will continue his studies at Penn State University in its five-year architecture program. Chris is a member of the National Honor Society and has received his school’s High Academic Honors every marking period. He is a three-year varsity tennis player and is active with numerous school clubs. He participates in the Architecture, Construction and Engineering (ACE) Mentor Program and is an active Boy Scout where he achieved the rank of Eagle. Though school, church, and scouts, Chris has contributed more than 100 hours per year in community service including two mission trips.