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Posts Tagged ISO 9001-2008

Go Big or Go Home!

“Geoff Forester photograph, courtesy of the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund”.

Go Big or Go Home. This was the title of an article by machine tool builder Mori Seiki about one of their customer’s decisions to buy some large pieces of equipment to give them a competitive advantage. The concept relates to much more than machine tool size.

In manufacturing, continuous improvement is a mantra of the Lean Manufacturing crowd. Small, steady steps in improving your day to day activities can lead to increased productivity, elimination of waste, and improved profitability. However, making a decision to employ these concepts in your company is not a small step. It is a big decision. It is a major cultural  transformation and a multi-year, if not a permanent commitment to a new operating philosophy. Going Lean is going big. The same could be said about committing to an ISO 9001 quality system. Or employing Theory of Constraints. Or adopting Quick Response Manufacturing.

Going big also relates to capital investments, new facilities, acquisitions, developing new products, or entering new markets. Although business people are  characterized as conservative by nature, making big decisions often requires bold risk taking and an audaciousness not present in the ranks of most corporate managers. Business dynasties aren’t created by just crunching numbers and analyzing data.  Mixing number crunching with guts and vision is what it takes to  make things happen. To paraphrase New Hampshire native son, newspaper editor Horace Greeley, “Go big, young man, go big”.


We can see the finish line for the first step of our ISO 9001 journey

“Geoff Forester photograph, courtesy of the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund”.

While Graphicast has always maintained a reputation for quality products, we did not have a lot of market pressure to become an ISO-9001 registered supplier. Our customers were happy with our quality system and we regularly passed quality audits. That is, until the recession hit us square in the face. We found very quickly that in response to the recession, many companies were actively strengthening their supply chains. Besides ensuring that their suppliers were financially viable, they were also trying to eliminate internal costs associated with working with those suppliers. One way to reduce costs was to reduce vendor audits and any vendor uncertainty. This put the pressure on us to be able to succeed in this environment. So began our ISO 9001-2008 registration and certification journey.

With a good production quality system in place. our efforts were aimed at the documentation and control aspects of the ISO quality system. We’ve made a lot of progress in the past nine months and just completed our certification stage 1 audit. Based on the results of that audit, we have our registration audit scheduled for the end of July.  If all goes well, we will have completed the first part of the ISO journey, getting our ISO 9001-2008 certification. Then the challenge of maintaining and improving the system begins. We’re looking forward to it!

Taking Innovative Casting Technology to Your Bottom Line™

Graphicast Inc.

PO Box 430 36 Knight Street,
Jaffrey, NH 03452
phone: 603-532-4481
fax: 603-532-4261