At Allis Roller, audits are not treated as a mandatory inspection, though they are, but as an essential part of our growth strategy. Regularly passing quality control inspections and exceeding the expectations of our customers helps us take on complex work and earn the trust of some of the largest international manufacturers in the industry.
External manufacturing audits provide a unique opportunity to scope out deficiencies and make improvements that may not otherwise be discovered through other quality control systems. This is why audits are a mandatory part of working with certain highly competitive multinational manufacturers. With each audit we pass, the standards Allis Roller operates under are raised for every customer, both large and small.
External audits are typically conducted by the customer, who sends out their own certified manufacturing experts to evaluate our team. Most recently, we received a 96% pass and an A1 rating from a Fortune 500 multinational manufacturer, while also managing regular audits from two other global manufacturers. In order for a machining operation like ours to consistently meet the expectations of several major external manufacturing auditors, our machinists have to anticipate these periodic evaluations year round. Scrambling at the last minute or dropping standards once an auditor walks out the door are not an option for maintaining a reputation built on unmatched precision and quality.
With many of our parts requiring welding, Allis Roller also works hard to maintain a team of certified welders. We consistently train our welders and provide them with opportunities to become certified by third-party Certified Welding Inspectors (CWI). Depending on a new welder’s level of experience, it can take between a few weeks to six months for them to be certified by a CWI, but we are committed to providing each of our employees the tools to excel. Given that many of our customers specify that only certified welders can work on their parts, this process is extremely important for maintaining the high standards of quality and precision that Allis Roller is known for.
So how do we ensure that our team is capable of consistently passing these inspections and evaluations year-round? By leveraging our own internal auditing system that keeps Allis Roller running like a well-oiled machine, regardless of who’s watching.
Internal manufacturing audits are one of the best ways for a manufacturer to continually evaluate and perfect their processes. The key to making these types of manufacturing audits a success depends entirely on the culture and quality of our team.
So what do we look for in an effective internal auditor? A detail-oriented team-player with good communication skills is essential for keeping any machining operation on track. At Allis Roller, internal auditors are carefully chosen and trained to think above their job function, look at the operation holistically, ask questions, and dig deep into the details of our processes. Twice a year, these skilled investigative team members prime our operation for long term success in maintaining Allis Roller’s ISO 9000 certification requirements, and passing the external manufacturing audits conducted by our customers.
However, it takes more than just one internal manufacturing auditor to keep everyone functioning on the same page. At Allis Roller, the entire team takes ownership of our quality systems. According to our Quality Engineer, Tom, “When you have a whole group of people doing the right thing, that enhances productivity and the integrity of the company.” This is why an effective internal audit relies on a personal investment from everyone on the shop floor. Internal manufacturing audits should always be a team effort, regardless of who is responsible for leading them.
Instead of dreading regular audits, Allis Roller has built a workplace culture that encourages our team members to see them as an opportunity to prove themselves and become a valuable part of something bigger. After all, creating a lean manufacturing operation isn’t just about processes, it’s about people, and every new audit, inspection, or certification we pass is an accomplishment attributed to the excellence of our workforce.
For more information on internal and external audits and how Allis Roller maintains the highest standards of quality control, connect with a machining expert via our Contact page.