Blog: Quality – The Really Big Picture
Telit has set itself an ambitious quality program — one that goes much further than reliable performance over long lifetimes, which can be 5, 10, 15 or even more years. Management has recognised the need to make quality pervasive, i.e. it must permeate the whole organisation in order to better address the needs of the fast-growing M2M marketplace. For example:
Long lifetimes are obviously essential: hundreds of thousands of modules, even million at times, are often deployed in a single solution. This also means that functionality must be field upgradable over-the-air.
However, the role of modules is changing in line with the development of standards: see “M2M Moving Forward via ETSI standards”. This article indicates how wireless modules will move up the value chain in line with the increased functionality that’s enabled by powerful embedded processors. And this breakthrough development represents a challenge as well as a huge opportunity for the industry — one that will further expand the market.
Telit’s Quality program was created to address this challenge and it has been implemented. It’s based on an apparently simple premise. Employ quality as a methodology that optimises processes and makes them more adaptive in order to unify the activities of R&D, manufacturing and sales and synchronises them with the vision of top management.
Management sets corporate goals that create sustainable, profitable business. They guide the company via a high-level vision of the marketplace and its medium- and long-term requirements. R&D evolves the technology portfolio so that products and services can be created that match those requirements. Manufacturing produces high quality, long lifetime products that match different market sectors, e.g. smart meters and automotive. And Sales closes a virtuous circle by bringing feedback from Telit’s customers on their individual, specific needs.
The red line that runs through these four activities and unites them is a detailed quality methodology. You can think of it as glue that binds everything together and simplifies the management process.
In addition, Telit Quality has consolidated quality assets that have been in place for a long time, but that are being continuously improved:
ISO 9001 qualification has been extended to the corporate level in order to ensure that the R&D labs located in different areas and devoted to different technological segments apply the same rules and methods;
ISO 14001 qualification warrants products at the Trieste facility (other locations will follow) with the respect to green environmental policies in design, in particular eco-design, and in manufacturing;
Maintain all contract manufacturers at the same quality level. This is assured by continuous and constant control on production processes, with a resident quality team, plus by quality procedures and methods.
And finally there is a new quality asset: in-house CE accreditation according to the Annex V Directive of R&D testing laboratories. This is a very important asset since it enables a quick introduction of new products, which is good for the company as well as our customers.