|Rapidly changing requirements and global competition force companies and especially SMEs to put more effort into continuous improvement of product and process quality respectively.
Gathering, transformation, design, forwarding and continuous improvement of “Perceived Product Quality” is highly relevant regarding that issue. The result will be new products that enthuse customers. Due to a rising number of system suppliers the new methodology being developed will strengthen the position of small and medium-sized enterprises on the market, as they are often involved as suppliers in the product development process of OEMs. The proportion of the added value generated by system suppliers regarding the whole product makes this involvement necessary and requires a consistent orientation regarding customer needs.
This approach not only stabilises the working situation for SMEs regarding contract and job security, it also increases customer satisfaction. Furthermore the methodology provides potential to avoid waste within the Supply Chain.
The main focus is on factors like time reduction, standardisation and quality cost reduction. Orientation towards these factors ensures optimization of the horizontal and vertical perspective of the Supply Chain.
Horizontal optimisation is reflected in time saving regarding product realisation. The project results will improve the relationship between SMEs and OEMs in the Supply Chains. The SMEs will be handed a tool that will assist them from the first discussion, along the development of parts, until the running production; a product that could also be usefull for other branches. Due to the methodology, all members of the supply chain will know the customer requirements concerning “Perceived Product Quality”, and be able to produce higher quality assemblies that fit better into the whole product. Waste of time due to communication expenses or rework because of quality problems is concisely minimised.
Vertical supply chain optimisation results from standardisation of product specifications, product quality and product performance at each level of the chain. A uniform understanding of “Perceived Product Quality” and the interrelated understanding of technical specifications reduces the variation in product realisation for various suppliers of the Supply Chain. Suppliers on a higher supply chain level will have the possibility to enlarge their supplier assessment with the criterion “fulfillment of Perceived Product Quality“.