Active EMS and the Importance of Quality Processes in EMS

Oli Randell, Managing Director of Active EMS, shares his Quality thoughts with Gayle Paterson, Account Director, Buzzword Tech.

As a direct result of Active EMS being a leader in Electronics Manufacturing Services (EMS) in the UK, we sat down with Oli Randell, their Managing Director, to understand how Quality and the processes that support it contribute to their success.

Q: Hi Oli, thanks for joining us. Would you share with us a bit of the process that Active EMS goes through to make certain your customers receive a finished product of the highest quality?

Oli: The quality of the finished product is of course extremely important. To ensure the overall quality and reliability of finished electronic products, effective quality control measures must be in place. In addition to quality, other requirements must also be met, such as product yields and time to market. We must also be considerate of the environment, making sure that neither process nor product negatively impact our world.

Active EMS recognises its responsibility as a corporate citizen. Through our Environmental, Health and Safety (EHS) Management Systems we have created a robust, quality-controlled environment for our customers and our team members.

Q: How does Active EMS deliver innovative products and services through their embedded quality solutions?

Oli: Active EMS delivers innovative products and services firstly and foremost by acting as an integrated partner who has a stake in the final outcome. Innovation can be found by sharing our design for manufacturing ethos by constantly looking for improvement opportunities, even for existing long-standing products.

Innovation can come from seeking alternative materials or innovative supply chain management solutions that could improve the reliability of the sourcing of materials or the commercial outcome of the end product, and innovation can be found throughout the final assembly and box build process by streamlining the production, improving the traceability of the final product, or providing value and supply chain support services.

Q: How does Active EMS maintain a high-quality level through continuous process improvement and a zero-defect culture?

Oli: It starts with the culture and values of a thoughtful and dedicated team, who truly care about the end outcome. As is common within electronic manufacturing, Active EMS has a number of automated inspections, visual inspection, and final test procedures that provide a number of quality check points.

Wrapped around standardised quality processes are our internal culture of truly caring about the end result and our zero-defect mindset. Part of that mindset is having trust and openness in the way we work, so that when we find something not entirely as it should be, no matter how small, we all have the passion to call it out and seek a long-term resolution.

Q: How does Active EMS continually improve their Quality Management System (QMS) and maintain its effectiveness, while ensuring regulatory compliance?

Oli: Active EMS encourages a culture and common philosophy of continuous improvement that is more than just the improvement of processes, procedures, and systems – it’s a mindset and a way of working that everyone in the organisation buys into.

Periodic examination of processes, work methods, and process yields ensure that data is acted upon in a timely manner, allowing correction or surveillance before problems arise.

The adoption of Lean, in particular Six Sigma and Kaizen, ensures that all improvements are effective, but at the same time guarantees compliance within the scope of the Quality Management System.

Active EMS knows that a quality product requires a comprehensive, all-around approach. We will take the necessary measures to provide a safe and healthy workplace, protect the environment, conserve energy and natural resources, and prevent pollution and labour risks by applying appropriate management practices and technology.

We will monitor and measure our performance and comply with all applicable EHS legal and other requirements we subscribe to, so we maintain our status as a responsible citizen.

We will periodically review our practices and procedures to address changing circumstances and to continually improve our performance.

We make our policy available to all persons working for or on behalf of Active EMS, vendors, customers, and the public.

We will promote and foster a culture where it is the responsibility of management, persons working for or on behalf of Active EMS, and business associates to work in partnership for the benefit of the environment and the health and safety of all.