Five AS9100 Myths Busted!
AS9100 provides the framework for companies seeking to implement an Aerospace Quality Management System (AQMS). AS9100 is intended for manufacturing companies while AS9110 is intended for those organizations that conduct aviation/aerospace maintenance.
Myth: AS9100 certification means implementing a new system and changing the way we work.
Fact: An aerospace quality management system based on AS9100 is in essence a system based on the fundamentals of ISO 9001. So, is a completely new system required? No. But, often it is easier for a consultant to sell a template and for organizations to fil in the blank. However, in the long run this is not going to work as most organizations already have a system and you do not want to lose what already exists. It Is important to capture the “as-is” of your system that is already helping you gain and do business. Then identify the gaps between the existing system and the requirements and work towards filling in those gaps. This was the change is small and quality does not become an add-on!
Myth: An AS9100 AQMS is a separate system from what we already have.
Fact: Quality should not be bolted on to the organization and this is not the intent of the requirement, nor should it be the intent of the organization. Quality is a fiber of the culture of the organization, from top to bottom, and a part of everything the organization does. A successful system embodies this culture where each person takes accountability for the work, they do by considering the risks of what they do and what they don’t. Without Management commitment the AS9100 AQMS is bound for failure. Quality as a separate entity will never succeed.
Myth: An AQMS is going to be a financial burden to implement
Fact: Companies can implement an AS9100 conforming AQMS based on our methodology used and improved over 30 years. This is found on our website at www.qmii.com/DIY. An AQMS can be implemented in-house or should you choose, using external expertise. From our experience, investing in a working system to which the organization is committed is one of the best investments an organization can make. When the system is built around the users and not around the auditors then only will each user of the system embrace the system and strive to improve it.
Myth: An AQMS means documenting EVERYTHING we do.
Fact: The system must work for you and not for auditors. The system must not be reliant on an individual and be capable of efficiently sustaining processes even in the absence of experienced personnel. Organizations only need to document to the extent necessary to ensure that a conforming product is delivered meeting all internal and external stakeholder requirements. Beware off the shelf manuals and ‘boxed kits.’ AS9100 does not require all processes to be documented. AS9100 does ask organizations to consider the risk of not documenting a process
Myth: An AQMS just another burdensome requirement with no benefits
Fact: AQMSs have shown improvements in organizations year on year. However, leadership can address this concern that each team member has by conveying the benefits of the system as required by AS9100 clause 7.3. Employees want to know what’s in it for them. Additionally, the tips provided above will enable a more user-friendly and not heavily documented system that is readily embraced.