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Breaking Down The AS9100 Standard

By STG Machine

What Is AS9100

The International Aerospace Quality Group developed an aerospace standard referred to as AS9100.

Furthermore, the standard outlines what requirements a company must adhere to in order to achieve a certification. Most aerospace companies meet the standards set forth in AS 9100 and some even require their suppliers to meet it as well. The purpose of the standard is to set a precedence for continuous improvement, risk management and employee safety.

What Makes AS9100 Unique

AS9100 sets some of the most stringent standards in the manufacturing industry. The standard consists of 6 main sections:

  1. Leadership: Top management is responsible for maintaining the quality management system
  2. Planning: Assessing risk and how to mitigate it throughout the workplace
  3. Support: Monitoring and measuring resources and communication guidelines
  4. Operation: Managing activities and resources as interrelated processes to achieve desired outcomes.
  5. Performance Evaluation: Analyzing internal and external factors that affect the quality of the business
  6. Improvement: Tracking and developing metrics for how the company should be performing and how it can improve

How To Get Certified For AS9100

All things considered, getting certified typically takes anywhere from 6-12 months. The first objective is to develop a quality management system (QMS) that meets all of the standards set forth in AS9100. Most companies will hire a consultant that has experience with the standard and with the auditing process.

After developing a QMS, the company must implement the new standards. This can involve training, testing, re-designing workflow structures and creating or revising internal standards or procedures.

Following the training, an audit schedule must be complied demonstrating how each requirement is met within the standard. Afterwards, the quality manager must perform an internal audit to demonstrate company wide conformance to the standard. Objective evidence needs to be provided for every clause to prove that the company meets the requirements.

Afterwards, the quality manager must issue corrective and preventive actions to eliminate any gaps found within the company. Following the closure of all non-conformances and corrective actions the company is then ready to hire a certification body.

A certified auditing company will usually perform a multi-stage audit. The process typically involves site visits or virtual meetings with the quality representative(s). Afterwards, the company will be awarded a certificate if they are found to be in compliance by the auditing firm.

Finding the Standard For AS9100

In conclusion, numerous companies carry the standard and make it available on their website. The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and SAE offer access to the standard. We purchased our standard from SAE and their version can be found here.

In addition, the IAQG website has a variety of helpful tools and resources. If your company is already compliant with a standard there may be some cross compatibility with the AS 9100 standard.

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