The reduction of irregularities inthe use of “process FMEA”
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Federal Technological University in Parana´ (UTFPR), Curitiba, Brazil, and
Richard K. Posso
Renault do Brasil SA, Sa˜ o Jose´ dos Pinhais, Brazil
– Use of failure mode and effect analysis (FMEA) is a requirement of ISO/TS 16949.However, research has shown that there are inconsistencies in the way the technique is applied inautomotive suppliers. The aim of this study is to identify these irregularities and to propose a strategyto minimize them.
– Questionnaires were applied in seven of the main suppliers to aEuropean automotive company, and ten FMEAs from each company were analyzed.
– The study identiﬁes irregularities in the development of process FMEAs and highlightsseven factors that contribute to these inconsistencies. Based on these data, a strategy including apartially preconﬁgured FMEA form is suggested. When tested with three of the suppliers, the strategywas found to result in a signiﬁcant improvement.
– The study describes an application strategy for automotive companies tocorrect problems associated with the use of FMEAs. The strategy includes a partly parameterizedspreadsheet for a cold stamping process that allows companies to implement their process FMEA in acollaborative supply chain environment.
Failure modes and effects analysis, Reliability management, Automotive industry, Brazil
According to Biasoli (2003), the failure of a product in the warranty period not onlyimplies costs for the company, but also compromises the company’s credibility. Onetechnique for improving reliability is failure mode and effect analysis (FMEA), whichallows preventive analysis of failures that may compromise reliability (Stamatis, 2003;Palady, 1997; Puente
, 2002). Dale and Shaw (1990) state that the main reason forhaving an FMEA procedure in most companies is that it is a mandatory requirement of their customers.Many organizations use FMEA, especially automotive companies, as it is a QS-9000quality system requirement (Instituto de Qualidade Automotiva, 2002). ISO/TS 16949(World Automotive Standard), which is equivalent to QS-9000, is a standard thatdeﬁnes quality requirements for suppliers.However, a number of questions have been raised about FMEA. According toTumer
(2003), it is laborious, requires a considerable amount of time, and isexpensive. In addition, the results obtained using the technique are unsatisfactorybecause of inconsistencies in the descriptions of the functions and failures of the objectbeing analyzed.
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The reduction of irregularities
Received March 2009Revised June 2009Accepted June 2009
International Journal of Quality &Reliability ManagementVol. 27 No. 6, 2010pp. 721-733
Emerald Group Publishing Limited0265-671XDOI 10.1108/02656711011054579