A Review of Audit Process for Supplier Selection of Rechargeable Battery Packs
Scott Nicholson, VP Quality, Pelican Products, Torrance, CA, USA
Co-Speaker: Amin Ezzati
Keywords: Process-Based Audit, Manufacturing, Safety
The rechargeable battery market has seen significant growth in market and demand. Manufacturers that use rechargeable batteries, must develop a robust process that combines product safety and technical requirements together with a suppliers manufacturing capability and their quality management system.
PELICAN have created products over the years for police, firefighters, military personnel, photographers, and others who have counted on PELICAN to protect their gear and their lives. Pelican Flashlights and Remote Area Lights are two important product categories that use rechargeable battery systems. For our customers operating in these extreme environments, failure is not an option. In order to meet the demands of our customers and the increasingly complex market of battery technology Pelican have created a methodology to combine all requirements for safety, technical specifications, and manufacturing capabilities to select the best and most reliable Battery Pack suppliers for its line of products.
In this new approach, a VCA (Vendor Capability Audit) has been introduced for a best-in-class Battery Pack manufacturer selection. Relevant checklists and scorings have been defined. The checklist oversees all necessary aspects of a Battery Pack supplier that could meet PELICAN’s needs. Then an EFA (Extensive Factory Audit) process was developed as an assessment of their management system. This process has created a relevant checklist for all the detailed aspects of a factory making a battery pack using ISO 9001-2015 requirements as a guide. At the end of process, a platform has been defined for scoring a supplier to show if a supplier is capable, has acceptable management practices, needs improvement, or is completely rejected.