When making purchases of any kind, quality is one of the critical factors to consider. You do not want to procure sub-standard products. For this reason, it becomes essential first to do a thorough search of whatever you plan to buy, especially if overseas.
In fact, it is advisable to think about the specs of your potential purchases. This way, you can be keen on all the details. When you are better equipped with more information about the product you wish to have, you can avoid mistakes in buying. This does not only save money but time as well.
In this article, we are going to focus on several aspects of product quality inspection.
What Is Product Quality Inspection?
When you need to purchase items in bulk, you realize that making orders for products from abroad is cheaper compared to local shopping. Therefore, you think of ordering for a customized product from the manufacturer. However, you are not guaranteed of the quality of the products that the manufacturer shall make.
To ensure that the product made is of good quality, you can think of dispatching some inspectors who will make a follow up of your product manufacturing process. The activity of following up the product manufacturing exercise for quality reason is known as product quality inspection.
Product quality inspection is a lengthy process. The reason is that it may require you to send an agent in every step of product manufacturing. However, for cost-effectiveness, the process is broken down in types so that you can determine the most crucial stage to have a quality inspector.
Importance of Product Quality Inspection
Besides the quality check, other several reasons necessitate the inspection. They include
• Making sure that the products are safe before the shipping
• Eliminating sub-standard goods
• Reducing late shipping
• Reducing inferior products in the packaging and shipping
• Mitigating customer complains due to defective goods
Customers are the reason why you ordered the goods. Therefore, they must obtain quality and standard goods. On the contrary, you will lose customers if the above aspects are not checked in manufacturing, packaging, and shipping of products.
Stages in Product Quality Inspection Process
The product inspection activity is not an event but a process that involves several steps. You should send product inspectors during each stage. The steps in the inspection process include
1. Pre-Production Inspection.
The pre-production stage refers to the initial production stages. The preparatory stage involves the procurement of raw materials necessary for the manufacturing process. At this stage, the inspector carefully looks at the raw materials to ascertain that they are of the required quality. Afterward, he/she reports to you. Besides, there is an inspection of the partially completed products to check on the quality. If it is okay, the quality inspector gives the go-ahead. Otherwise, he/she orders for repetition. It is also possible for the inspector to assist manufacturer with some technical information concerning the product.
2. Actual Production Inspection.
Upon completion of the first batch of the products, a shipment is made. However, before it happens, the inspector must critically examine the effectiveness of the product to ensure it works perfectly well. If it does not, he/she advises the manufacturer on where to improve to provide the expected outcome. Mostly, the inspection happens after production of 10 to 15% of the product. All the defects and deviations pointed out in the pre-production are rectified here.
3. Overall Random Inspection
As the name suggests, this is an inspection done after the whole manufacturing process is over. Products are selected randomly for assessments like functionality, number, safety, color, packaging, and size. It is during this stage that the inspector checks if the products are in compliant with regulations. Here, major, minor, and critical defects are classified and assessed to either pass the products for full shipment or not.
4. Inspection on Loading
After the final check, loading inspection comes next. It is crucial to check on quantity, loading method, and safe handling of the cargo. Once checking occurs, the cargo is sealed for shipment.
5. On-site Inspection
It is a general inspection that can check things like power consumption, bar code, rub check, tape check, among others. The kind of tests on a product depends on its nature.
General Levels of Inspection Using Acceptable Quality limits
In most cases, it is not possible to inspect each product. However, with the sampling techniques in AQL, the process is simplified. Each of the three levels is different in the amount of sample it takes. All in all, the three plays one role in determining whether a sample passes or fails the quality test. There are three different levels of sampling in AQL, which include
GI ... gives the smallest example in determining quality. It works well on a limited budget. Besides, it is best when goods have a low value, and the supplier has superior quality management.
GII ... is a more advanced sample and is mostly known as the standard sample. The level gives a more significant sample hence better accuracy at a low cost. When you first see the results of this level with the first sample, you can be able to determine if it’s the right level or not.
GIII ... is the high-class level of AQL. The latter gives the most significant sample size hence yields the most reliable results in a quality check. Therefore, this level gives you a high assurance of the quality of the products you have shipped. GIII is the best level to use in case
• Shipping involves highly valuable goods.
• The supplier has had quality issues
• You are getting the first order from a manufacturer or a new product.
Inspection of products is an excellent way to make sure that you buy quality products from a manufacturer. However, the process can be a bit costly, but it is worth it. You should be keen enough as an inspector to notice even the minutest details as a small ignorance can render a whole cargo useless. Quality is critical for any product.