The aerospace standard AS9145 was released in 2016 and is titled “Requirements For Advanced Product Quality Planning (APQP) and Production Part Approval Process (PPAP)”. Aerospace adopted the Automotive Industry Action Group‘s (AIAG) APQP concepts and applied a common-sense approach in fitting these to the Aerospace industry. While there are some differences, the theme, purpose, and concepts remain the same.

Founded in 1982, the AIAG was created to develop recommendations and a framework on how to improve quality. The organization was founded by representatives of Ford, General Motors and Chrysler (now FCA). Since its inception, many large companies have joined the AIAG including Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Caterpillar and Navistar.  The Tier one, sub-Tier one and service suppliers of these larger companies have also joined.  Currently, the AIAG has over 3800 members.

The AIAG publishes automotive industry standards and offers educational conferences and training on their implementation. The Advanced Product Quality Planning (APQP) standards required by AS9145 are a framework of procedures and techniques used to develop products.

In recent years, the AIAG has partnered with the German Association of the Automotive Industry (aka VDA) to create APQP documentation to be used throughout the world. VDA members include BMW, Volkswagen and Daimler. Unfortunately, the APQP documentation coming from the AIAG and VDA is developed by committees. As a result of the need for consensus, many of the documents are not optimized because different members of the committees have considerable investment in their own techniques and do not want to change. Consequently, the procedures often grandfather methodologies that when used do not result in maximum quality and profitability. Given the historical use of the AIAG APQP concepts by the Aerospace industry one must assume that the joint AIAG VDA developed APQP documents will also be used by the Aerospace industry.

Harpco® Systems has studied the AIAG and VDA APQP “standards” closely and believes they contain mistakes of “omission” and “commission”. The mistakes of “omission” are actions the AIAG and VDA standards do not require companies to do that are necessary to maximize quality and profits. The mistakes of “commission” are actions the AIAG and VDA standards suggest companies should do that if taken will reduce quality and productivity. The good news about the AIAG and VDA “standards” is that in order to achieve consensus, there is enough flexibility to create a product development system that is fully compliant with the AIAG and VDA standards that excludes the errors of commission found in the standards while including the actions that have been omitted that are essential to optimized product quality and profitability.

Harpco® Systems has created such as system. It called “Risk Based Product Lifecycle Management®” (aka Risk Based PLM®).  By implementing Risk Based PLM® companies not only experience improved quality and productivity but also meet all the “Risk-based Thinking” related requirements of AS9100D:2016 as well as the requirements of AS13004 (PFMEA and Control Plans) and AS13006 (Process Control).

For more information about Risked Based PLM®, go to “What is Risk Based PLM®“.