APQP, which stands for Advanced Product Quality Planning, is widely used in several industries but primarily in the automotive industry.
The goal of APQP is to ensure that there is effective communication between:
- People within the manufacturing company
- The manufacturing company and the customer
APQP software establishes a system that is structured and allows for a standard communication process. This helps to eliminate breakdowns in communication between the different departments involved in manufacturing, and also in providing a procedural way for communication progress and issues with the customer, so that everyone can be on the same page.
Through the application of this software a company can prove four actions:
- they have evaluated risk
- they really are able to manufacture/produce the required part
- they know they can produce the part in the required quantities
- they have examined and are able to meet all the requirements of the customer
The Process of APQP Software Promotes Teamwork
As this software is being used in a company, it promotes teamwork. Without a system like this in place, many times each department is content to work independently from each other through the manufacturing process. Once their section of the process is complete, they pass it down the line and don’t receive feedback until the end of the project. If they had been doing something wrong, or even inefficiently, they would not hear about it until time and resources have already been wasted. However, when APQP software is implemented, from the very beginning of the manufacturing process, it promotes the feeling of teamwork, as well as a quality increase in the overall product. Now, the different departments are constantly working together from the start of the project, because APQP software is able to simulate and evaluate the product. The departments can then take the simulated results and work to make the whole process better. The process problems are now being targeted before they are even a reality.
Through this software, manufacturers can define the product requirements before production, and communicate effectively with the customer.