Many manufacturers in China, Vietnam, and elsewhere in Asia are paying a lot of attention to marketing & sales, but making little effort to improve their systems and processes.
If you work with a factory that runs poor production processes, you are likely to be disappointed time and again by poor quality and late shipments. Not to mention, their internal issues drive their costs up, and in the long run, you will pay for it, too.
In a PMA audit, we spend more time looking at the technical aspects of production, and less on the more traditional “quality management system” aspects. The work is nearly all done on the production shop floor.
If a factory says they have a solid process & product control plan, a PMA audit is a good opportunity to check it in detail and to comment on it.
This is the right type of audit if you want to ensure your manufacturer operates mature processes and has sufficient technical expertise to match your needs.
A PMA can be performed on any kind of factory. Some very small factories are very well organized, as are some very large ones.
The key is, that if you want to ensure you are working with a competent manufacturer, you need to look into the technical details of their operations.
In South China, our QA team has gathered the experience needed to audit the following processes:
- General assembly & packing
- General metal machining
- Die casting
- Batteries (Cells & Packs)
- Wood machining for furniture
- Plastic injection molding
- Rubber molding
- Electronics (PCBA)
- Cut & sew for garments & bags
We are able to perform PMA audits in some other key areas, such as Vietnam and India, as well as wider Asia, but please discuss your needs with us in order for us to confirm if we have a suitable engineer locally or need to send one (extra costs may apply for the latter which we will inform you of in advance).
Our engineer’s main findings are laid out in our report, together with comments and photos. It will be quite obvious what the highest sources of risk are.
For example, when we send one of our engineers to check a die casting operation, they report on 10 aspects of that process:
- Production Capacity
- Technical Capability
- Process Controls
- Material Parameters
- Process Cycling Parameters
- Preventative Maintenance and its Effectiveness
- Tool/Die Storage
- Tool Design & Manufacturing Capabilities
- Tooling Efficiency
- General Housekeeping
Jack L (China)
One of our senior mechanical engineers, Jack, has been with us in the QA team for 4 years.
He’s widely experienced and has spent many years at some of the world’s largest companies, such as his role as a tooling specialist for 7 years, including 4 years at Samsung and 3 years in an engineering company. He also spent 3 years in a faucet factory as a process engineer and another 3 years at Leviton Electronics as supervisor of a plastic injection molding workshop.
Wayman Z (China)
Electronic Quality Engineer
Wayman has been a member of the Quality Assurance team for over 3 years.
Before joining us he spent 2 years at Galanz as a quality engineer following microwave and air conditioner production processes. He gained a great deal of experience in 8 years at an engineering firm working for Cisco, Honeywell, GE, and other large companies, mostly performing process audits, component inspections, and first article inspections.
Evelyn T (Malaysia)
Supplier Quality Engineer
Evelyn is a highly-experienced quality engineer specializing in supplier and manufacturing quality.
Her past experience includes almost 20 years at Dell — first as a process engineer and later in supplier quality engineering. She also worked at Honeywell as a Senior Quality Manager. Over the years she has led supplier improvement projects, trained quality engineering teams, and managed suppliers for key materials and components for these giants.
Mridul S (India)
Mechanical & Process Engineer
Mridul is one of our Indian quality, process, and management experts and holds a degree in mechanical engineering.
He has deep experience in Lean manufacturing and has worked for various companies in heavy industry, energy, and quality services, as well as some time at TÜV SÜD South Asia. He works on projects where experience in process planning and improvement, industrial engineering, new product development, and more, are key focuses.
How much does it cost?
The cost is between 300 and 850 USD per day, depending on the nature of the work (to be quoted based on the real situation) in South China (in the Shenzhen/Dongguan area) or South Vietnam. Prices may vary for other areas and countries, please ask us.