IPC Seal of Approval


Reading time ( words)

IPC_seal.jpgWhat if we could get the military, aerospace, medical, automotive, and a few other industry groups to agree to accept one site audit and one certification? In other words, one audit, once a year, which covers everything.

Already underway, IPC has ventured into the area of PCB fabricator and EMS provider audits based on IPC-1071 for fabricators and IPC J-STD-001 and IPC-A-610 for PCBA. Called IPC Validation Services, this effort is being driven by IPC’s OEM members who want to replace for individual site audits with a single IPC audit as the standard for vendor acceptance.

What Does Compliance Cost?

Randy Cherry is leading this effort at IPC. It’s a good first step but it doesn’t go far enough IMHO (my kids taught me that). We have an opportunity to remove a huge source of pain and suffering for many companies on both sides of the transaction. These site audits are time-consuming and expensive. After querying, I found one medium-sized EMS company’s costs of compliance, including audits, translated to about 0.5% of sales. I’m sure that with some economies of scale, that number would decrease, but it’s still a significant number for most companies and another non-value-added expense to doing business. EMS industry wide, that starts to add up. At about $500 billion in sales, the EMS industry’s cost of compliance is approximately $1 to 3 billion annually. If the same number holds for PCB fabs, then we’re looking at another $100 to 300 million. The industry spends a ton of money on this! Get this down to a single audit and the OEM wins, EMS/PCB fabs win, and if IPC does the job, they win as well. Seems like a no-brainer.  Here’s a list of likely target certifications which could be addressed with this effort:

  • ISO 9001 (Quality)
  • ISO 14001 (Environmental)
  • ISO/TS 16949 (Automotive)
  • ISO 13485 (Medical)
  • AS 9100 (Aerospace)
  • ANSI/ASQ Q9001
  • ANSI/ASQ Q9003
  • DSCC (Defense Supply Center Columbus) / DLA (Defense Logistics Agency)
  • NADCAP (list specifications and/or audit type)
  • UL
  • ITAR (Registered #)
  • OHS18001 (Occupational Health & Safety)
  • IRIS (International Railway Industry System)
  • MIL PRF 55110

I’m sure there are more we could add to this list and some that shouldn’t be on it. In any case, you get where I’m going with this.

Read the full column here.


Editor's Note: This column originally appeared in the November 2014 issue of SMT Magazine.

Share




Suggested Items

I-Connect007 Editor’s Choice: Five Must-Reads for the Week

06/24/2022 | Nolan Johnson, I-Connect007
Market news was certainly big this week. While the U.S. stock market continues make some large swings, the PCB and PCBA are doing their own dance with the numbers. We’re still feeling the effects of the pandemic, but it seems to be more about playing catch up. Still, the industry is showing some instability, both in positive and negative ways.

Review: Institute of Circuit Technology 2022 Annual Symposium

06/15/2022 | Pete Starkey, I-Connect007
The British Motor Museum in Warwickshire, housing the world's largest collection of historic British cars, was venue for the 2022 Annual Symposium of the Institute of Circuit Technology on June 8, which attracted a substantial gathering of manufacturers and suppliers from the UK printed circuit industry. ICT chair Emma Hudson reflected upon lessons learned during the pandemic lock-down and how the industry has successfully adapted to circumstances. She commented that the UK’s PCB fabricators are extremely busy, as she introduced an outstanding conference programme including a keynote from the incomparable Happy Holden.

I-Connect007 Editor’s Choice: Five Must-Reads for the Week

06/03/2022 | Andy Shaughnessy, Design007 Magazine
Things are heating up in the world of PCB design and manufacturing as well. In the past week, we published quite a bit of news—some good, some not so good. Some of the news is mixed, as we see with the EMS industry shipments rising YOY in April, but falling from the previous month. It’s nice to see NASA investing in American small businesses, but they didn’t really have a choice, did they?



Copyright © 2022 I-Connect007. All rights reserved.