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Quality Systems

Bourns commitment to quality is embedded in every discipline of the corporation. Customer satisfaction is essential to every Bourns employee. All team members receive training in their specific area of responsibility to ensure the highest level of performance.

The following areas are part of our total quality system.


Quality Policy

Our goal is to satisfy customers on a global basis while achieving sound growth with technological products of innovative design, superior quality, and exceptional value. We commit ourselves to excellence; to the continuous improvement of our people, technologies, systems, products and services; to industry leadership; and to the highest level of integrity.

Quality Commitment

Bourns worldwide facilities are dedicated to providing products and services of exacting quality which conform fully and reliably to the requirements and needs of its customers. The systems in place at Bourns entities ensure management of appropriate activities during concept development, prototype, and production.

Training

is the basis for any continual improvement program. Although there are training courses too numerous to list, we have selected specific programs that are deemed necessary to achieve our current quality goal of six-sigma performance. These programs include on-the-job training, statistical process control, design of experiments, and cycle time reduction.

Process Specifications and Operating Procedures

including engineering drawings - must be approved, available to the process control personnel, and fully implemented.

Manufacturing Control Plan Implementation

is used as a means of tracking critical characteristics of processes and determining control points and methods. We look at the status of measurement capability studies, methods of SPC, process capabilities, and design of experiments as needed.

Measurement Capability

studies are the first step in understanding and implementing a continual improvement program. Without knowledge of the measurement systems, the balance of the process controls cannot be considered fully functional. A measurement system must be analyzed statistically for stability and accuracy. A gage repeatability and reproducibility (GR&R) study must be performed to determine the capability of the equipment.

Statistical Process Control (SPC)

techniques determine if a process is stable and in control. Well-established charting methods are used on all critical characteristics of a process and product.

Design of Experiment (DOE)

techniques are performed on new processes and/or existing processes where there is a need to understand the interactions of various factors of a process. Some of the most common experiments used are the Plackett-Burman , Taguchi Methods, and Full & Fractional Factorial Designed Experiments.

Cycle Time Reduction (CTR)

at Bourns is an ongoing process. The goal is to reduce inventory, shorten lead times, and reduce costs. By shortening the product cycle time we gain quality improvement. Problems are identified sooner and fewer products are affected if a problem is encountered.

Total Productive Maintenance (TPM)

In this age of automation, productivity, cost, and quality all depend on the capability of the equipment. In production facilities where automation is prevalent, the TPM goal is zero breakdowns and zero defects.

Scrap Dollar Control

affects the bottom line of any business. This unit of measure helps to identify the overall cost of the product and is a reflection of outgoing quality. Screening product is not 100% effective; monitoring scrap helps to determine if the processes and the product quality are improving.

Productivity

is measured as throughput divided by operating expenses. Cost reductions are a primary focus within our factories.

Customer Complaints & Returns

Response Times are monitored to show the company's ability to react. Our goals are one day for initial responses and a maximum of eight days for final responses. Our initial responses show our customers that we have received their complaint and what actions are being taken to identify the cause. Our final responses provide the customer with the information regarding the actions that were or are being taken to correct the situation.

100% On-Time Delivery

is measured against the company's promised delivery date. Our goal is to reduce cycle time, and improve quality so the customer's request date becomes the basis for the measurement.

Reliability

is measured against the engineering specifications for physical and environmental performance requirements. The goal is to achieve a Cpk (process capability index) greater than or equal to 2.0 on each requirement. This goal would guarantee outgoing product quality would not exceed 1 defect per billion devices produced. Routine tests are made on products selected randomly from the production process. Other tests are performed for engineering evaluations, special customer requirements, qualifications, and various industry or military standards.

As-Built PPM Reports

assess the quality of products as they are completed through the manufacturing process. Screening is not an approved method of operation in a world class company so we focus on the as-built quality to promote doing it right the first time.

Field Reported PPM

data is important to compare against our perceived out-going PPM. From this information we can determine if our products are continuously improving in the customers view. Customers are tightening their requirements, so it is important that we monitor their satisfaction through reported defects per million parts produced.

Self-Directed Work Teams

are being implemented throughout the company. These teams focus on process improvements in every aspect of our business.

Supplier Partnership Program (SPP)

is a program where the company works with suppliers to develop and implement their continual improvement programs. This cooperation helps the supplier understand his quality performance as we, the customer, see him. By working with suppliers, we can improve quality, reduce costs, and provide rewards to good suppliers in the form of more business. This serves to reduce overall variability and improves quality.

Six-Sigma Quality

is our objective for all critical characteristics in our processes and products.

Certifications

All Bourns facilities are currently certified to ISO9001:2000 and most to ISO/TS16949:2002. We are also seeking certification to TL9000 for those product lines focused on the telecommunications industry. Current certifications are available on this web site.

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