What is Quality Control | Benefits, Types, Procedure & Issues

What is Quality Control | Benefits, Types, Procedure & Issues

Posted on 02 Dec 2022

Everything you need to know about Quality Control

What is Quality Control?

Before we get into the explanation of what quality control is, it is important to understand
that a significant aspect of this is establishing well-defined controls. Quality control is the
process implemented to ensure that a manufactured product meets a defined set of
standards or criteria. Quality control is different from quality assurance.
While both are parts of the overall quality management program in a company, quality
assurance focuses on the fulfillment of quality requirements whereas quality control focuses
on fulfilling quality requirements. The actual overall inspection of all the set criteria so that
client or customer requirements are met is what effective quality control is all about.
All businesses irrespective of their size should have a quality management system in place to
stay relevant in a competitive market scenario. Companies use the quality control
procedure as a means to evaluate, maintain, and improve product quality. To put it in
simple terms, the two main goals of quality control are to ascertain the uniformity of
products and to reduce the possibility of errors or inconsistencies with the product.


Purpose of Quality Control


Quality should be the cornerstone of every business to remain successful and deliver
products that consistently meet the expectations of customers. Before getting into what is
the purpose of quality control, it is integral to understand that customer satisfaction is
always the major consideration for every company that is into manufacturing.
While the main purpose of quality control is to ensure the delivery of standardized products
every single time, these are the other goals:
● To reduce defects or quality issues arising unexpectedly as fixing faulty products will
only lead to extra costs affecting the bottom line of the business
● To always maintain a strict quality standard that is acceptable for the customers as
the credibility of the business can be affected otherwise
● To ensure uninterrupted production by catching flaws or problems in the raw
materials and in the manufacturing processes. Catching errors in a timely manner
can save the business huge costs
● To suggest further improvements by studying the methods and processes of
production
● To aid in analyzing the root cause or origin of the inconsistencies or errors in the
product
● To devise steps that can be taken to rectify the quality control issues and arrive at
the desired product quality

 

Types of Quality Control

 

Quality control is not a universal process and the types of quality control methods
employed by companies are based on the industry to which the specific products belong.
Some products may call for scientific testing whereas others could use a qualitative
approach.
The four basic types of quality control are process control, acceptance sampling, control
charts, and process protocol.
Process Control – It involves monitoring and adjusting till the required output is achieved
with the least variation. The role of process control is to ensure that all workings are correct
and smooth. This helps to improve performance and increase business efficiency. This is a
technical process that makes use of feedback loops, industrial-level controls, and chemical
processes for inspection and quality control.
Acceptance Sampling – A statistical measure used to ascertain if the sample product meets
the overall manufacturing standard. Testing the entire batch of products is not a feasible or
cost-friendly option for the company and hence only a few products will be selected for
acceptance sampling.
Control Chart – A type of quality control that includes graphs or charts that can be
employed to study how business or manufacturing processes change over a period of time.
A good understanding of the changes can help avoid inconsistencies that can happen in
products due to these changes. The overall stability of a product can be analyzed with the
four process states in the control charts; the ideal state, threshold state, the blink of chaos
state and the chaos state which is when the process is out of exhibit control.
Process Protocol – Some master standards or rules that processes have to follow to reach
quality goals. With this mapping methodology, certain evaluative indicators or quality
control factors can be created for every step of the process. This can greatly help to improve
the design and implementation processes and prevent process failures or quality control
issues.


Benefits of Quality Control


If you are in the manufacturing business, ensuring that your products follow the same high
standards should be the top concern. Robust quality control procedures make this possible.
The benefits of quality control go beyond just attracting more customers or increasing sales
of products.
Here are some major benefits that quality control can bring to the business:
Cost Reduction - Having an effective quality control system in place can reduce production
costs that may arise from wastage of raw materials, partially finished and finished goods.
The rework costs incurred by substandard products can also be avoided.
Better Employee Morale - Employees are more quality conscious and understand product
standards when there are stringent quality control procedures within the company.
Producing quality goods enhances the morale of employees.

Better Resource Utilization – The resources of the company can be utilized to the maximum
without any wastage when there is a quality control process in place. With this, there will be
better control over machines, equipment, men, materials, or other resources.
Better Sales – The top benefit of quality control is definitely to increase the sales of the
products. No consumer wants to spend their money on substandard products. The cost of
production can be low when quality is adhered to at every step and this can allow products
to reach buyers at a low rate increasing demand and sales.
Happy Customers - Quality products that meet expectations automatically mean happy
customers.
Reduced Variations – Product variations can occur due to changes in the nature of
machines, materials, or operations. Quality control can bring about a certain level of
uniformity in the products with the least possible variations.


Procedure for Performing Quality Control in Business


A company must first decide the specific standards that products manufactured or services
rendered must meet before implementing a quality control procedure. The first step would
be to determine the extent of quality control actions. There should be a set percentage of
units that need to be checked from each batch of products.
Once the quality control is done, the data about the percentage of units that failed the test
has to be reported to the management. Following this, corrective action can be decided and
taken. If the percentage of failed units is high then steps should be devised to improve the
production process and solve quality control issues.
The quality control process must be ongoing to ensure that desired results are achieved
after the changes have been made. Unlike proactive quality assurance programs in
companies, a quality control program is reactive where a dedicated team studies the final
product output to identify the problems or defects and works to fix them.


Challenges of Quality Control


Taking a product to the market is a complex process so the possibility of errors is quite
understandable. A good understanding of the various challenges of quality control can to a
great extent help minimize quality control issues.
Here are a few challenges of quality control that can hinder the smooth running of the
process:
When a product has multiple parts and materials then the quality control of all the different
components can be challenging. All the parts should conform to the exacting standards for
the product to function properly.

● The additional handling and assembly during product reworks could lead to the
possibility of additional defects happening. This is especially the case when the
product has to be handled by many different workers or staff.
● When the product’s complexity and other dependent factors are not properly
studied before determining the quality issues. A good understanding of the product
function and quality standards is crucial to quality control.
● When the number of players involved in the supply chain is more,managing quality
control can get more complicated. Some factories could also outsource the
manufacturing of certain parts to sub-suppliers. At times the inspection and quality
control of sub-supplier factories may also be required.
● The efficient management of shipping deadlines is another challenge of quality
control. In the case of complicated products, a regular product inspection can help
to catch quality issues thereby avoiding delivery delays.


Relevance of Quality Control for Small Businesses


Quality control benefits every company irrespective of its size or industry. Any company that
wants to consistently deliver high-quality products and remain successful should have a
quality control system in place.
The two-fold benefit of this is that you will always stay ahead of your competition and
always have satisfied customers. With effective quality control, small businesses can
especially have a winning streak in markets where quality is given more importance than the
price of the product
Brand loyalty and customer satisfaction can be greatly improved with a quality control
procedure. A small business that delivers quality products performs better and it can also
increase the customer base solely based on positive product reviews. Quality control can
also help to positively improve the reputation of the company and its engagement on social
media platforms. Continuous product callbacks due to quality control issues can adversely
affect brand goodwill.
Even though the initial efforts are more, it is absolutely necessary for small business owners
to implement quality control standards and processes. Having such a system ensures that
there will be a final assurance of quality before the product reaches the customer. Defective
products will only mean that you have to deal with a lot of wastage of company resources
and additional expenses.
Overlooking quality control and ignoring small mistakes in your production chain can, over
time, turn into much larger errors that may ultimately cost you dearly. For small businesses
to implement effective quality control within their organization, it is important to
standardize everything from start to finish. Create standardization by devising a thorough
process and passing it on to the employees that are tasked with handling quality control.


Identifying Quality Control Issues

 

Solving quality control issues begins with correctly identifying the root cause or origin of the
issue. Doing this can save a lot of money, time and effort when it comes to rectifying the
error and reworking the product.
This can be easily done when quality control checkpoints are added at every stage of the
production line. Repairing faulty products and pinpointing the correct stage when the issue
occurs is so much easier with such a quality control strategy.
A key indicator of quality control issues with a product is when it underperforms in the
market or when there is a regular callback of products or general neglect of operations.
Using third-party services when it comes to the inspection and quality control of products
could greatly help identify problems before it gets to your customers.
Pre-shipment inspections are another way to help identify quality control issues and assess
overall product quality before your order ships. Such inspections can also happen right at
the manufacturing stage as well to check on the quality of raw materials used. Big importers
dealing with high-volume products often conduct ‘during production inspections’ (DUPRO)
to check product dimensions, appearance, and functionality quite early in the
manufacturing process.
Global Inspection Managing can help to maximize your company’s potential and maintain
quality standards throughout your operation. We have relevant knowledge of industry
standards and extensive experience working with industries like fresh produce, textiles and
manufacturing, and we also provide lab testing services.
Ensuring quality control is extremely crucial to stay relevant in today’s marketplaces. Quality
standards should be maintained right from raw material storage to production, lab testing
and even in the pre-delivery stage to ensure that the final products meet the same
standards of quality. An assurance of quality is the most important factor for the trust
placed in your business by your customers.

Share this :

Comments(0)

Leave A Comment

Need more information?