“How do you eat a bowling ball?” is a question I have often heard our Plant Manager pose to certain individuals or groups within our organization. Of course, the bowling ball represents something most would consider impossible to “eat.
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Remember the first time you took your car into a new service center for routine service or repairs? Did you do any advance research on the reputation of the shop before booking the appointment? Did you look for some assurance that the technicians working on your vehicle were qualified to do the job? Like many others of my generation forward, I didn’t spend much time under the hood learning how everything works (and why things sometimes don’t work)—so I occasionally need to depend on trained specialists to keep me on the road.
How can I know I’m dealing with “trained specialists?” Well, unless I know them personally, I can’t know with absolute certainty—but I will invariably look for a shop that employs ASE Certified Technicians. Because of the rigorous elements built into the ASE certification process, involving combinations of significant experience and testing, I feel confident entrusting my vehicle to those qualified by it.
At ICD, we strive to provide our customers the highest level of confidence in the quality of our products and services. We believe that the “assurance” is just as important as the “quality” in our quality assurance. That is to say, our customers deserve a product of the utmost quality that they can be assured they will receive every time they place an order.
So, how can we improve our ability to instill this confidence? One way is to develop and initiate a robust and thorough certification program for our production employees.
ICD’s Certification Program will ensure our technicians are qualified through:
- A minimum six months of specific, department-level experience prior to eligibility for certification. This will provide necessary time for adequate training at each operation.
- A minimum proficiency at department-specific job skills and a sustained level of overall work efficiency prior to eligibility for certification. This will help assure the technician is best prepared for the certification process.
- A “start to finish” certification test. This test, conducted by a facilitator from outside production, will require technicians to demonstrate their ability to complete order processing, within a department’s operation, exact to ICD’s work instructions.
- A written exam. This exam, also developed directly from current work instructions, will measure the technician’s job knowledge and comprehension of critical concepts.
In the area of auto mechanics, I need to trust trained and skilled technicians with many things I may not know a whole lot about—but I do know and expect quality and performance every time. Our customers may not have an in-depth understanding about everything that goes into the manufacturing of our products, but they also know and expect quality and performance—every time. And we want to exceed our customer’s expectations—every time. That is one of our core values.
ICD’s Certification Program will become an important step toward ensuring fulfillment of that value.
Question: What improves your confidence in a company’s ability to provide you the very best?