How To Understand the Important ISO Automobile Standards

How To Understand the Important ISO Automobile Standards

Within the automotive industry, a standard for quality management exists defined by the ISO automobile standards. Originally slated as a technical specification, ISO/TS 16949 eventually evolved into IATF 16949 when updated standards were republished in 2016. The standard obtained the IATF name (quite different from what you’d expect from an International Standards Organization certification) because of the International Automotive Task Force (IATF).

The Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) reported that in October 2016, the completed IATF 16949:2016 was published, and superseded the previous ISO/TS 16949. In this article, we intend to explain these automotive standards and suggest reasons why a company may want to seek certification in line with IATF 16949.

History of the IATF 16949

Quality management standards alongside an ISO automobile standard has existed since 1999. The technical specification was published in June of 1999 to offer companies within the industry a practical guideline to develop their quality assurance systems. It was based on the well-established ISO 9001 standard for quality management but tuned explicitly to the automobile industry.

The IATF 16949 guidelines don’t just cover automobile manufacture but extend to encompass any organization that operates within the automobile and motorcycle production industries. With the IATF’s push to make the technical specification into a full ISO standard, the IATF 16949 was published in 2016. To this day, the internationally recognized ISO automobile standard is used to manage defect prevention, deal with waste, and ensure continual process improvement within the supply chain.

Achieving IATF 16949 Certification

For a company to successfully achieve IATF 16949 certification, they need to conform to the outline of the published document. The first three sections are introductory, but the meat of the matter happens in the last seven parts, namely:

  • Context of the Organization: This section deals with requirements for the scope of the QMS, identification of the stakeholders both internal and external and their expectations.
  • Leadership: A QMS is only successful if those at the top of the organization embrace it. In this section, leaders must demonstrate their dedication to achieving the standard with their QMS.
  • Planning: How does the company seek to achieve its goals? The planning section deals with having the organization define risks, opportunities, and the risk analysis procedures they intend to adopt. Additionally, the company should state their intention to implement contingency plans and preventative actions.
  • Support: This section helps an enterprise to define its requirements for support personnel, documentation, and other resources it may find useful.
  • Operation: This section deals with the manufacture of goods, including guidelines for product and design reviews, manufacturing equipment standards, and the methods used to monitor the quality of the finished product.
  • Performance Evaluation: As with all ISO-based standards, constant improvement is a core part of the process. This evaluation section offers insight into how the business can examine its QMS to ensure that it adapts with each iteration.
  • Improvement: The final section guides companies on how they can improve the QMS. It includes tips for corrective actions, as well as error-proofing and problem-solving processes.

How Does a Business Achieve ISO Automobile Certification?

Since the process of IATF 16949 certification is similar to ISO 9001, the steps are nearly identical:

  • Internal Audit: The business checks their existing QMS processes to ensure that records demonstrate compliance with the documentation or discover any weaknesses that may exist within the process.
  • Management Review: Leaders of the company review the results of the input and output requirements per the standard including results of the recent internal audit and take appropriate actions to improve it by assigning resources and improving processes’ efficiency.
  • Corrective Actions: Management’s decisions are put into place to improve the QMS, making it compliant with the documentation and shoring up its weaknesses.
  • Stage One of Certification: Auditors from your chosen certification body will examine the company’s documentation to make sure that it complies with the requirements of the IATF 16949.
  • Stage Two of Certification: Next, the certification body will examine the evidence from implementation by Organization for compliance with the IATF 16949 standard.

ISO Automobile Standards can Change a Company’s Outlook

One of the reasons why companies opt for international standards certification is to improve their capabilities in line with the rest of the industry. IATF 16949 is a way for automotive manufacturers as well as any business within the industry’s supply chain to manage the quality of its final product. This quality assurance goes a long way towards promoting the company’s skill and raising its reputation among others within the industry. If you’re interested in finding out more about the IATF 16949 standard or what an automobile ISO can mean for your business, contact Sync Resource today.

Ultimate Guide to IATF 16949 Transition

Ultimate Guide to IATF 16949 Transition

IATF 16949 transition for 2016: has been built on the foundation of healthy QMS. QMS that aims for continuous improvement, to avoid defects and help minimize rework due to product flaws, waste reduction, high tech embedment of software, and ensured product safety.

Why IATF 16949 transition is needed? 

The main reasons behind update of IATF 16949 transition are as follows:

  • Better integration with other management systems and ISO Standards
  • High quality results with continual improvement cycle
  • Active engagement of top leadership management team
  • Mitigation of potential risks and hazards along with development of risk based thinking approach

What IATF 16949 Transition Will Bring To Your Business Results?

Along with multiple benefits, IATF 16949:2016 can bring guaranteed below benefits to your business:

  • Process Improvement

IATF 16949 2016 helps to facilitate continuous improvement in the current management system of your organization. Moreover, the newer version of the standard makes monitoring and improvement of the process more visible to the management.

  • Opening New Business Doors

Exhibition of human and machine safety, results reliability and accuracy and top notch trace ability of results is ensured when one implement newer version of IATF standard.

  • Efficiency Boost

Time, money and resources can be saved to a greater extent after implementation of new version of IATF standard.

  • 100% Compliance

Risks assessment and mitigation at all levels with complete compliance can be ensured with this new version of IATF.

  • Motivation and Engagement of Peers

Getting internal processes more efficient makes employees’ engagement to the utmost levels making them feel more motivated.

  • Supplier/ Vendor Relationship

OEM in automotive sector will be more inclined in offering their services once you get certified with new version of IATF.

To Find out more about IATF 16949:2016 Transition, get in touch with Sync Resources Expert Team and We will get Back to you in no time!

IATF 16949 2016 Key Requirements

Clause # 01 – Scope

To cover products with embedded software is mandatory requirement of IATF 16949 transition.

Clause # 02 – Normative References

Fundamental QMS Vocabulary is being referenced so that valuable guidance can be provided.

Clause # 03 – Terms and Definition

Some of the new terms that are being introduced in IATF 16949 2016 are

  • Accessory Parts
  • Challenge Parts
  • Total Preventive Maintenance
  • Production Shutdown
  • Outsourced Processes
  • Special Status
  • Manufacturing Services

Clause # 04 – Context of the Organization

Internal and external issues must be identified that are more relevant to QMS or that support QMS. Interested parties that are more closely connected to the QMS must be identified which may include company stakeholders, potential and existing customers, and regulatory bodies aligned with strategic direction of the organization.

Thirdly, it is important to define the scope of QMS which should include specific identified functions by any supporting functions that are being outsourced.

Continuous improvement in QMS must be established, implemented and maintained with define controls according to the requirements of IATF 16949:2016. The process approach should contain documented information containing process flow diagrams, written procedures or risk assessments with mitigation plans.

Moreover, another new section of IATF 16949 transition has been introduced by the name of Product Safety. The standard contains listed documented processes for product management and product safety that should be designed to address the current and other emerging issues which automotive sector has been facing.

Clause # 05 – Leadership

The team that provides direction and control the organization at top level is leadership team. One of the major requirement of IATF 16949:2016 is holding top management responsible to drive change at all levels. The new version of the standard required top management to show increased involvement with greater responsibility in order to ensure the integration of organizational systems with standard’s guidelines. It is the core responsibility of top management to ensure to get QMS communicated, implemented and monitored throughout the organizational layers.

Top management of leadership should have a microscopic zoom to maintain customers’ satisfaction levels by exploring innovative opportunities that are additionally cost effective too. Leadership team must be able to perform SWOT analysis and act on it accordingly i.e. minimization of threats, conversion of weaknesses into strengths and availing opportunities for multiple improvements.

Clause # 06 – Planning

Nothing can be accomplished without proper planning of organizational processes. The first segment of planning clause is Risk Assessment while the second segment concerns with Risk Treatment. All the potential risks should first be identified along with opportunities for improvement. An action plan must be made on realistic grounds indicating to address both risks and improvement opportunities. Establishment of quality measures is another need of Planning clause.

The quality objectives being fabricated must be aligned with quality policy leading to the enhancement of customers’ satisfaction. Other supplemental requirements may include risk analysis where the need of considering and addressing the specific risks relevant to automotive sector so that risk mitigation strategy can be designed and implemented across the group. The last part of the clause deals with change management and its systematic implementation. Management could be enabled to identify all the possible consequences of changes and the allocation of the resources.

Clause # 07 – Support

Assured management support must be there so that relevant resources, right people and strong infrastructure can be built up. Moreover, support system must be that strong that it can ensure all the mandatory resources to set up, implement, maintain and continually improve QMS.

Enhanced requirements in the clause stresses over covering of calibration and verification records. Mandatory laboratory functions like inspection, testing and equipment calibration from internal and external certified laboratories. As far as measurement and laboratories’ functions concern, organizational resources must be developed in terms of employees’ competency levels and training.

Clause # 08 – Operation with IATF 16949 Transition

Organizational processes includes all the official plans and manufacturing processes that an organization requires to meet customers’ requirements and the level of services customers’ expects. The new version of the standard highlights the requirements of written as well as verbal communication in terms of formats and languages to be used. The usage of prototype programs and final product approval system where retention of records and products and services which are outsourced have become regulatory requirement.

Other sub-clauses refers to the proper channel for selection criteria of suppliers and vendors, management, measurement ways, importance of managing risks in particular with products’ quality which might reflect to make use of technology. An additional requirement for products that have been reworked due to some faults in quality and strict control of non-conforming products. Scrap management and disposal following proper guidelines must be ensured at all levels of supply chain.

Clause 09 – Performance Evaluation with IATF 16949 Transition

Internal audits on risk based approach must be established on periodic basis whereas audit criteria is mandatory to be defined and reported to relevant management. Competency and qualification of internal auditors must be strengthened by classroom training and relevant field work. However, the requirement of management reviews remains the same. Documented information like minutes of meeting of management reviews must be saved and recorded as an evidence of management reviews. Performance evaluation can be done by monitoring, measurement, analysis of performance of the team.

Clause # 10 – Improvement with IATF 16949 Transition

Opportunities for improvement must be identified in terms of organizational processes and services so that customers’ satisfaction level can be enhanced. There are no preventive action requirement for this clause as new methods to handle preventive actions have been devised. The scope of Continuous improvement have been reached to the sustainability and effectiveness of QMS but the path of achieving continuous improvement has not been defined in the standard. Analysis on customer complaints have been made a significant part of the standard.

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The Simple Truth About IATF 16949 Automotive Task Force

The Simple Truth About IATF 16949 Automotive Task Force

With such an ominous name as IATF 16949 Automotive Task Force, it leads many non-specialists to consider them warily. These are the ladies and gentlemen responsible for the development of the IATF 16949 standard. They are also in charge of continual improvement of the standard. The Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) states that the latest iteration of their criteria was published in 2016, and supersedes the previous standards document. The IATF designed the guidelines to help companies be more proactive in their corrective and preventive actions, as is expected from an ISO certification, focused on the development of Quality Management Systems (QMSs). This particular standard is entirely in compliance with ISO 9001.

Who Is The IATF 16949 Automotive Task Force?

Several companies are stakeholders within the automobile industry that make up the IATF. According to the IATF itself, it’s an ad hoc group of manufacturers and trade associations that have come together to offer better quality products to users around the world. The members of the IATF include:

  • Mahindra
  • Volkswagen AG
  • Renault
  • General Motors
  • Daimler AG
  • BorgWarner
  • BMW


Understanding the IATF 16949 Standards

The basis of IATF 16949 focuses on seven distinct principles, which include:

  • Focus on the consumer
  • Strong upper management within the company
  • Full engagement of the team
  • An approach that centers on processes
  • Continuous iterative improvement
  • Using facts and figures to garner insight which can be used to make decisions
  • Relationship management among stakeholders


Integrating the IATF Standards with a QMS

Companies that undertake the IATF certification will need to ensure that their QMS conforms to what the standards expect. The QMS is required to have a handful of characteristics, including:

  • Realistic customer definition: Ideally, the QMS should try to relate its ideal customer with a consumer that fits into the business’s target demographic.
  • Continual improvement: By using feedback systems, the company can get actionable information that may be used to improve the business’s operating efficiency.
  • Defined Company Objectives: Without a goal to work towards, the QMS doesn’t have any aim or purpose. A goal is necessary to give the QMS impetus.
  • Delivering Flawless Products and Services: The QMS should focus on ensuring that all products that leave the company should conform to the highest levels of quality.
  • Reduction in waste: Finally, the WMS should concern itself with keeping the company environmentally responsible.


Helping To Create a Better Product

According to the IATF, the combination of its partners is focused on developing a better product for the end consumer. The standards that IATF 16949 encourages offer more than just a better-designed product, however. The quality of a business’s processes also improves. The iterative function means that the systems are always improving upon themselves. Since all companies follow the same standardized approach, all quality management systems can interact with each other. QMSs also have the benefit of reducing the number of defective products as well as lowering the amount of waste produced on average. Finally, IATF 16949 makes businesses be more risk-aware, making for better risk management from a business perspective.

Types of IATF 16949 Certification

A company can seek to become IATF 16949 certified. The certification system was designed primarily for businesses within the automotive industry. Implementing it increases the functionality of their QMS. However, in addition to having a QMS that is certified, companies can go one step further and have an individual on their staff become accredited as an IATF 16949 auditor.

Choosing the IATF 16949

Businesses that run QMS systems stand to benefit a lot from the IATF 16949 standards. They offer a way for a company to ensure that its QMS is functional and adaptable. The role of constant iteration and development ensures that the business can deal with any issue that may arise. If your company wants to experience the benefits that the IATF 16949 has for your QMS, we’d be glad to guide you on the path to certification. Contact us today!