Improving Quality in the Supply Chain

Learn how to apply quality assurance principles in procurement

57 member reviews

Competency: Supply Chain Quality
CEH's: 8

Many organizations compete on the basis of quality: is your procurement work helping or hurting your organization's ability to succeed? Let's face it: your organization cannot provide a high-quality product or service if it gets substandard quality products or services from your supply chain. And you know who everyone will blame if there is a supplier quality problem? Right – the procurement department or maybe even you!

So, if quality is so strategically important and procurement activity contributes heavily to quality, supply chain quality improvement should be one of your top priorities and core competencies, right? Then, what exactly are you doing to improve supply chain quality? If you are like most procurement professionals, the answer is probably "not much" or maybe even "nothing." Those answers may have gotten overlooked before, but they will not cut it in view of today's higher expectations. As a modern procurement professional, you need to quickly get up to speed on quality improvement practices. In the past, that hasn't been easy.

But there is finally a way for you to learn about the intricacies of quality assurance and positively influence the quality that you get from your supply chain. Our highly personal and interactive online course "Improving Quality in the Supply Chain" will teach you the quality assurance practices necessary to interact with quality professionals and engineers in your organization and at suppliers so that your organization can have the quality advantage that it needs to succeed.

You will learn:

  • How to lead your organization through the four phases of a supply chain quality improvement program
  • What the critical requirements are for starting a supply chain quality improvement program
  • How to calculate the cost of poor quality and use it in your sourcing decisions
  • How to measure supply chain quality performance
  • Benchmarks for leading-edge quality
  • How to observe and interview suppliers to learn about their quality programs
  • How to evaluate and structure inspection programs, including disadvantages of inspections as a quality assurance method, determining sample sizes, and estimating probabilities of accepting defective goods
  • How to understand quality assurance terminology, such as parts per million (ppm), AQL, and more
  • The statistics involved in quality assurance and how to apply them to industry
  • How to use quality assurance statistics and process capability indices to evaluate suppliers' quality capabilities
  • How to use Statistical Process Control and control charts in working on quality programs with your suppliers
  • What ISO9001 is, what it is not, and why it matters to a supply chain professional like you
  • How quality improvement programs like Lean, Six Sigma, and Lean Six Sigma can be used in your supply chain
  • How quality principles and tools like value stream mapping, the "Five S's of Lean," process mapping, Ishikawa/fishbone diagrams, failure mode effect analysis, and Poka Yoke can be applied to supply chain quality improvement programs

How this online course works

  • You can start this on-demand course any time after you enroll; there's no pre-scheduled start date!
  • You progress through the course at your own pace, accessing easy-to-understand reading material, exciting exercises, optional multimedia, quizzes, and even a fun mid-term game!
  • You will have access to a friendly, expert instructor for any questions you may have!
  • You will learn best practices and processes designed so that you can apply your new skills in the real world!

To learn more about how full-length online procurement courses
from the Next Level Purchasing Association work, click on the short video below.

What are others saying about this course?

Fundamentals of Purchasing

"As a Lean Six Sigma Certified Professional, I found that this course is tremendously on target and simplifies complex issues in the Supply Chain. World-class and professionally put together, this course shows the Next Level Purchasing Association's ability to produce Fortune 100-caliber classes."

David Millington, SPSM, SPSM2
Director of Purchasing and Process Management
New Jersey, United States of America

Ready to enroll?

but have a few questions?

If you enroll in "Improving Quality in the Supply Chain" on or before May 31, 2016, you will receive all of these bonuses:

  • FREE printer-friendly, PDF version of the class material
  • FREE Personalized Performance Appraisal Improvement Analysis by email
  • FREE Purchasing Performance Measurement spreadsheet template

For immediate assistance, call our office at
+1 (412) 294-1990 and speak with a member of the NLPA Team, Monday through Friday from 8AM to 5PM Eastern US Time.


Click on the button below to submit your questions electronically and a member of the NLPA team will contact you within one business day.

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NLPA Course Catalog