A 12-Point Supplier Quality Checklist

PurchTips edition #259


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Do You Practice Supplier Quality Management?

Supplier quality is a relative thing: all suppliers have some level of quality, but some are more committed to higher quality than others.

How can you assess the degree of your suppliers' commitment to quality? A thorough assessment requires extensive supply chain quality skills, but the following checklist can get you started. Then, be sure to read on to learn about Next Level Purchasing's new online course that can help you develop the world-class supply chain quality skills required for maximum quality success!

The more of the following characteristics that a supplier has, the more serious that supplier is about quality.

  • The supplier measures its quality performance
  • The supplier uses parts-per-million (ppm) as its quality unit of measure, not percent defective
  • The supplier has quality performance goals
  • The supplier has a documented record of continuous quality improvement over several years
  • The supplier's quality efforts are focused on preventing defective items from being produced rather than detecting defective items that have already been produced
  • The supplier has formalized quality documentation, training programs, and the like to ensure that quality is sustainable through personnel changes
  • The supplier knows its standard deviation
  • The supplier can demonstrate how it uses tools to determine whether or not its processes are in control
  • The supplier has a quality-related certification like ISO9001
  • The supplier has implemented a leading quality improvement program like Lean, Six Sigma, or Lean Six Sigma
  • The supplier has implemented a quality improvement program with its own suppliers
  • The supplier has won a prestigious quality award such as the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award

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Are You Getting The Most Out of Your NLPA Membership?

Members of the NLPA get more than just articles like this by email. As a member, you also get access to:

  • The Procurement Training & Certification Starter Kit
  • The latest Purchasing & Supply Management Salaries Report
  • Leading-Edge Supply Management™ magazine
  • Members-only webinars 10x per year
  • And more!

If you haven't been taking advantage of these benefits, why not log in and start now?