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INSPECTION

AND
QUALITY
CONTROL

INSPECTION DEFINED
Inspection (and test) include
measurement of an output
comparing the measured output to the designed specifications
and
taking a decision whether the output conforms to specifications
or not i.e. determining conformity

Inspection is used for a variety of purposes e.g. to


differentiate between good and bad products, to monitor the
change in process performance, determining the accuracy/
precision of a measuring instrument.
Although this term is more often applied in the manufacturing
sector, it is equally applicable to the service sector also. In the
service sector, different terms are used like REVIEW,
CHECKING, EXAMINATION etc. Examples include checking a
hotel room for cleanliness etc. Before check-in, evaluating the
correctness of information filled by an applicant in the forms
etc. are really forms of inspection a measurement, a
comparison to the standard, and finally a decision.

Distinction between
INSPECTION and TEST
The distinction has rather become blurred or unclear.

Inspection, typically is performed under static conditions


(that means no change: physical/mechanical, chemical, or
otherwise is made on the entity being inspected).
Inspection can range from simple visual examination to a
series of complex measurements.

Tests, on the other hand, is performed under static or


dynamic conditions. Test results not only determine
conformance but can also be used as inputs for analysis
such as evaluating a new design, making physical
adjustment on products etc.

INSPECTION PLANNING
Inspection Planning is the activity of
designating the stations at which inspections should take place.
providing the inspection stations with the means to know as to what to do and also
the facilities for doing it.

Designating the inspection stations


The most usual locations are:

o at the receipt of goods from suppliers. Here, inspection is referred to as incoming


inspection or supplier inspection.
o before and/or during running of a critical, costly, or irreversible operation.
o before delivery of goods from one processing department to another. Here, the
inspection is called, toll gate inspection or lot approval.
o before shipping the completed products to the storage or customer. Here, the inspection
is referred to as, finished goods inspection.
o at natural peepholes (bottleneck operations) in the process.

INSPECTION VERSUS QUALITY


CONTROL

In the past, the products were inspected after they had been
manufactured. If the products did not meet the specifications,
they were rejected. It should be realized by doing so we were
not being proactive and were only resorting to detection of
errors in the already produced products. But detection is
sometimes wasteful because it leads to consumption of time
and resources in products which are not always of good
quality. So, we should try to avoid waste by not producing
unusable/ poor quality goods in the first place. For this, we
should resort to a strategy of prevention. Detection tolerates
waste while prevention avoids waste.

Quality Engineering these days, focusses on the prevention


strategy. Quality concepts now focus more on the process and
less on the product, because it is the former which produces
the latter. If the process is conforming (is stable and capable),
the product definitely will be conforming and this will prevent
the production of bad products.

QUALITY
The term Quality has different connotations when used by different people, but
all definitions of quality have a central concept: the quality of a product is
good when the product is able to satisfy the needs of the consumer.
So quality is defined as customer satisfaction, or fulfilling customer
expectations.
A Product is said to be of good quality if the product leads to customer
satisfaction and fulfills expectations. Quality is defined as FITNESS

FOR USE.

Customer expectations are based on


price of the product.

intended use

and

selling

Identifying quality is purely a judgmental call. It is entirely the perception


of the individual or the group making the determination. We may agree on
the quality of something or may completely disagree. If the product
satisfies us, we judge it to be of quality. If it does not we consider to be
lacking in quality. Generally the degree of excellence of a product is
judged by comparing it to some absolute standard, or some other product
or based on our life experiences. So to judge quality we need to have laid
down specifications, standards of acceptability, procedures for testing etc.
and schemes for assessment and verification of results.

Quality
is
also
SPECIFICATIONS.

defined

as

CONFORMANCE

TO

QUALITY DEFINED
1)

JOSEPH M. JURAN (1974)

Defined Quality as FITNESS FOR


USE

2)

PHILIP B. CROSBY (1979)

Defined Quality as CONFORMANCE


to REQUIREMENTS or
SPECIFICATIONS.

QUALITY DEFINED
The aggregate of properties of a product determining its ability to
satisfy the needs it was built to satisfy.
(Russian Encyclopedia)

The totality of features and characteristics of a product or service


that bear on its ability to satisfy a given need.
(European Organization for Quality Control
Glossary, 1981)

The totality of features and characteristics of a product or service


that bear on its ability to satisfy stated or implied needs.
(ANSI/ASQC Standard A3-1987)

Quality is to continuously catch the voice of customers (even their


future needs which they have not realized), convert these needs
into a product/ service and make it available to customers at a
price lesser than the competitors and in a time duration shorter
than the competitors.

Four Kinds of Fitness (Four


Levels of Quality)

1. FITNESS TO STANDARD (prevalent upto early 1960s)


2. FITNESS FOR USE
3. FITNESS OF COST
4. FITNESS TO LATENT REQUIREMENTS

Four Kinds of Fitness (Four


Levels of Quality)

FITNESS TO STANDARD (prevalent upto early 1960s)


-also called FITNESS TO SPECIFICATIONS
-was the first concept (first level) on the basis of which quality was defined.
-Fitness to standard views quality as meeting the standards and specifications
as defined by the designer. In other words, determining whether the product
meets fitness to specifications is mainly a question of whether a product
passes the inspection process or not?
-For evaluating quality on the basis of fitness to standard, the companies
use the concepts of inspection and testing.
-MAIN LIMITATIONS: This concept used alone a s definition of quality has two
main weaknesses:
a.this concept judges quality through inspection process. So to assure quality,
defective or low quality items are discarded. In reality, this concept results in
adverse relationships between those who manufacture (prod deptt. people)
and those who inspect it (IQC deptt. people).
b.this concept overlooks the needs of the customer and whether the product
fulfils those needs. This concept focusses more on creation of production
standards, and inspection procedures to check whether product meets the
standards for which it was made. In the process, it neglects the market needs.
- To overcome these limitations, leading Japanese companies started focusing
on the next level of quality in the early 1960s.

Four Kinds of Fitness (Four


Levels of Quality)

FITNESS FOR USE


-Fitness for use views quality as meeting the purpose for which the product was
purchased and fulfilling customer requirements.
-This does not mean that fitness to standards concept can be dispensed with.
Rather, this concept emphasizes that fitness for use should be used in addition to
fitness to standard.
-This concept focusses on the real needs of the customer and demands of the
marketplace rather than just focuses on the standards set by the designer. This
concept assures that the product can be used in a manner as the customer wants
to use it. Screw-driver example. So, when the product can meet the varied needs
of the customer, then according to this concept, it is of good quality.
-MAIN LIMITATIONS: This concept used alone a s definition of quality has two main
weaknesses:
a.Here also quality of product is judged through inspection process. Results in certain
conflict between workers and inspectors.
b.Fitness for use is focusses on use-based competitive advantage. If a company
clearly understands the real needs of the user (i.e. fitness for use), it may gain a
monopoly position, so that it can charge high prices high enough to compensate for
the higher cost of higher quality through inspection. However, competitors offering
equally good products for cheaper prices quickly spring up, eliminating the monopoly
position.
-Thus, the companies started moving away from this concept of high costs of
inspecting quality in to building quality in.
- During the early 1970s, companies started moving to the neat level of quality
called, fitness of
cost.

Four Kinds of Fitness (Four


Levels of Quality)

FITNESS OF COST
-fitness of cost cost means high quality at low cost.
-Achieving high quality at low cost requires reducing the
variability of the production process, so that all unit being
produced are within the inspection limits and none/ few have to
be discarded. This requires feedback and correction at each
step rather than just at the end of a production process.
-This mean shifting the focus from controlling the output
through inspection to controlling the process producing the
output.