MAN Truck & Bus AG needed a visual inspection solution to improve their product quality. They’re now using the inspection management software, ATS Inspect.
The solution was required in their facility in Steyr where they develop and manufacture their light and medium trucks as well as special vehicles and cabs for the MAN production network.
Recording Visual Defects
At key gating points along the production line ATS Inspect is used by operators to carry out a visual inspection of the vehicle. When an operator finds a defect, such as a scratch or dent or even an incorrect component, they can easily highlight it on a picture of the product. With a few clicks they record the exact location, type and severity of the defect.
Defects are entered using both fixed workstations and tablets that allow the operator to move around the vehicle as they’re recording the results of the inspection.
Quality Control for Mass Customization
At MAN Steyr the many different customer requirements called for flexibility within their production process and every truck that comes off the production line is slightly different.
This mass customization adds a layer of complexity to the inspection process which ATS Inspect is ideally suited to. When a truck on the production line arrives at an inspection point a barcode containing the unique identification number of the truck is scanned. This value goes directly into ATS Inspect and the inspection is tailored to the exact requirements of the current truck.
The operator is presented with a selection of views which correspond to both the model and configuration of the truck and the station at which they’re working. The operator can then highlight quality issues on the views presented.
Electronic Quality Control Checklists
Likewise, electronic quality control checklists, with which the operator will confirm that all of the customizations have been correctly implemented, will dynamically adjust so that each unit has a personalized visual inspection.
This individualized process means that even when every truck is different, no truck will ever leave the plant with an incorrect build or quality issues. With ATS Inspect, MAN Steyr can ensure that individuality does not come at the cost of product quality.
End-to-end traceability is also built into ATS Inspect, allowing MAN Steyr to track and trace every unit they produce. Every inspection station a unit passes through records further product quality data and allows them to build up a fully detailed picture of its current status and the processes it has been through.
ATS Inspect provides a complete history of where the units have been and when they were there. This means that when quality issues arise they‘re perfectly positioned to review every action that has taken place. Once they’ve located the source of the issue they‘re able to view every unit that passed through the trouble spot, both before and after it.
Product Quality Analysis
When selecting an automotive inspection solution a critical requirement for the team at MAN Steyr was the ability to analyze the quality data.
They found this in the powerful reporting capabilities of ATS Inspect. Information entered in ATS Inspect is immediately available for analysis so generated reports are always up-to date.
They have a vast range of ready-made reports available to them that allow them to review every aspect of their product quality, from a complete inspection history of a single unit to a trend overview of the total number of defects recorded over the last month. This information, made directly available to both operators and managers, makes everyone aware of quality issues as soon as they arise so that decisions can be made to find solutions using all of the available information.
ATS Inspect has given MAN many benefits, including:
- Traceability: A complete history of the defects recorded against each vehicle.
- Reduced Defects: The number of defects being recorded on each vehicle has dropped dramatically.
- Reduced rework and scrap costs: By catching defects sooner and eliminating the cause of issues the overall cost of rework and scrap has been reduced.
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