FCM is the founder company of what is now known as the Ford Engineering Group Ltd, first established in February 1910. Sister company Ford Aerospace Ltd (FAL) is already accredited to the AS9100 Revision C Standard.
Derek James, the Ford Group Quality Manager, who has significant experience of the North East Automotive market, says of FCM’s achievement:
“I am pleased. A key requirement of ISO / TS 16949:2009 is the fulfilment of customer-specific requirements, set up by the automotive manufacturer in addition to the quality management system of their suppliers so by adopting these aspects we can achieve Improvements in a number of areas."
Customer satisfaction. Deliver products that consistently meet customer requirements.
Reduced operating costs. Continual improvement of processes and resulting operational efficiencies mean money saved.
Improved stakeholder relationships. Improve the perception of your organization with staff, customers and suppliers.
Proven business credentials. Independent verification against a globally recognised industry standard speaks volumes.
Ability to win more business. Procurement specifications often require certification as a condition to supply, so certification opens doors.
International recognition. Additional confidence for global sourcing.
Consistent quality approach. Common approach in the supply chain for supplier or subcontractor development.
“Our next challenge is to further develop & improve the systems & standards to allow the company to move forward to certify for the New IATF 16949 standard in 2017, which focusses more on leadership and management of the processes.“
FCM (which has no connection with the Ford Motor Company) is well known throughout the North East and the rest of the UK as a reliable supplier to the automotive and related industries, especially power transmission and earth moving equipment, which will welcome the disciplines displayed by a holder of TS 16949. Ford Group’s Chairman, Geoff Ford, is involved in the North East Automotive Alliance and is the industrialist who drives the Apprenticeship pillar of the NEAA’s Skills Group, chaired by Sevcon’s Matt Boyle.
It is scarcely a coincidence that Ford’s own Engineering Academy, which offers apprenticeships and traineeships to 16 to 24 year olds from September 2017 at SASMI in Nissan, is run by Gateshead College.
FCM’s success with TS 16949 is at the heart of that company’s strategy for the foreseeable future and is being driven by the Board of Directors, through Chris Ford, the fourth generation Managing Director of the Ford Engineering Group. Chris sees the TS Standard as being a highly significant stepping stone for FCM.
“This accreditation is key to the strategy of the Ford Components business. The methodology implemented through the business has really added structure to all of the good practices we were already doing as well as firming up the drive for improvements. After so many years producing parts for the clients in the automotive industry it is the natural step to gain the standard and potentially open more doors to grow our name in the industry”.