A Critique of Statistical Process Control in a First-Line Motor Industry Supplier

Quality Engineering vol. 4 issue 3 - January 1992

Abstract: A case study of statistical process control (SPC) in a first-line component supplier to the motor industry is reported. Particular emphasis is given to the shortcomings of the company's application of SPC. The main findings, include the identification of a number of flaws in the control charting with a mix of different philosophies in use, the company had not followed any formal SPC implementation plan, the initial SPC training carried out on behalf of the company was based on outdated principles, and it proved difficult to change some of the first-line supervisors' views on control charting as a result of this early training. There was lack of reactive disciplines and corrective action. It is also pointed out that many of the difficulties emanated from a lack of senior and middle management commitment and leadership to SPC and the company had used a series of camouflage measures to hide the situation from their customers.

Keywords: Case study - Automobile industry - Statistical process control (SPC) - Process improvement - Control charts

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