The ISO/TS 16949 is an international standard designed and developed by the ISO (International Organisation of Standardisation). The ISO/TS 16949 is also referred to as IATF 16949, as it was developed by the IATF (International Automotive Task Force), which refers to a conglomerate of vehicle manufacturers and trading groups. The latest version of this ISO is termed as 16949:2016, used for ISO 9001:2008, for vehicle production, and production of service parts.
When tracing the origins of ISO/TS 16949, we can look to ISO 9001 within the automotive industry in relation to specific requirements such as ideation, development, fixtures or modifications and deployment of services. For this reason, certification of ISO/TS 16949 will be based on these aspects, for companies wishing to be certified under this standard. This for auto-manufacturing or vehicle manufacturing organisations, as well as service part production. However, the certifying process is executed by other authorities assigned or contracted by the IATF.
If we were to go back to the history and background of ISO/TS 16949, it all began with the supplier of automotive parts, adopting the standard rating of BS 5750. This rating became the basis for developing an internationally recognized ISO 9000 series for quality management system standards. However, since ISO 9000 wasn’t an exclusive standard for the automotive industry there was a requirement to develop a standard that met all the the requirement of automotive standards. Owing to which, the QS-9000 was developed in the USA, by Ford General Motors. However, when countries in Europe developed standards of their own (such as EAQF, AVSQ), it became quite confusing about conferring to different quality standards. Hence, the IATF was formed by various bodies in the automotive industry, to establish a global standard for all.
It first began with ISO/TS 16949:1994, based on (QS-9000, VDA6.1 EAQF and AVSQ), then there was ISO/TS 16949:1999, ISO 9001:2008, 16949:2009, and then 16949:2016
In spite of ISO being a worldwide organisation, it is not just ISO 16949 but TS 16949. The main reason for which is a technical specification (TS) which is recommended with ⅔ majority vote by the technical team of the ISO group.
Companies and organisations, in turn, are provided with direction from the IATF 16948 standard to ensure the consistent standards of quality and customer satisfaction are met by their products.
The standard IATF 16949 is an additional standard used together with ISO standard such as
To secure a 16949 rating, companies need to meet certain requirements in relation to automotive development, production, installation, and services, including software empowered products. Companies that engage in manufacturing activities, can apply for the same via government websites,
The IATF 16949 standard is applicable to sites of the organization where manufacturing of customer-specified production parts, service parts, and/or accessory parts occur. The standard is based on 7 quality management principles.
By adopting the ISO/TS 16949, companies are able to ensure their customers with products and services of consistent quality. Hence there are several benefits for companies that adopt ISO/TS 16949.
The ISO/TS 16949 standard is all about achieving an organisation’s goals, by providing customers with products and services that meet their expectations, as well as consistent quality. The ISO/TS 16949 standard focuses on the relationship between the organisation’s goals, principles, plans, rules, etc.
Organisations deciding to implement the ISO/TS 16949 should focus on meeting company goals and objectives, while eradicating risks. Hence, management should look at this as a strategic decision, and make the necessary arrangements for the same. These include;
The ISO/TS 16949 certification can be applied in various stages within the auto-industry. The ISO/TS 16949 certification is issued for 3 years, and approved annually, based on rules and procedures stated by IATF, in accordance with the appointed auditor and the certification body by the international organisation.
On completion of 3 years, the ISO/TS 16949 certification is re-applied again. The certification is meant to provide confidence to a potential consumer at the time of purchase. Some of the top certification bodies authorised by the IATF include;
Audit: Stage 1 is all about meeting the basic requirements to be eligible for certification. For this reason, an audit team is assigned to conduct verification and checks of the documents required.
Observing Audits: Stage 2 involves suppliers demonstrating the practical application of the management system in accordance with IATF 16949. The audit team evaluates the effectiveness of the requirements applied to obtain the certification required. They further help in optimisation of its processes.
Issuing the certificate: The ISO/TS 16949 certification is issued if all criteria have been met by the company, certifying that the organisation has met all necessary requirements for compliance and specifications.
Certification renewal: On completion of 3 years, the ISO/TS 16949 certification is re-applied again. The certification is meant to provide confidence to a potential consumer at the time of purchase.
Preliminary audit (optional): Although optional, this stage allows the company to prepare for all the audit process required for ISO/TS 16949 certification. It also provides customers the opportunity to understand the positives and negatives of products and services from the company and prepare for the certification process. The audit team checks to ensure that the process involved meets the requirements of the ISO/TS 16949 standard. Additionally, this stage also provides a level security, especially after all the checks are conducted.
The required ISO TS 16949 documents are based on the requirements of ISO 9001. This is because the ISO TS 16949 standard depends on the the standard of ISO 9001:2015. The mandatory documents and records required by IATF 16949:2016
Any organisation can apply for the standard, by conferring to the basic requirements. However, most organisations apply for the ISO TS 16949 standard, when
Suppliers who wish to provide parts to the auto-industry are required to apply for the TS 16949 standard. The primary goal of the standard is to produce products that meet customer expectations and improve customer satisfaction. The secondary goals are to recognize risks within the system and to eliminate them
There are eight main chapters for the ISO TS 16949 standard are:
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