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AIAG Announces Industry's First-Ever Certification Program for Quality Core Tools Through Its New Supply Chain Institute.

Companies Can Increase Value to Customers Through Individual Certification for APQP/PPAP, FMEA, MSA and SPC

DETROIT, June 8 /PRNewswire/ -- AIAG announces the launch of its Supply Chain Institute, which will offer - for the first-time ever, anywhere - quality aptitude certification to validate and verify the effectiveness of Quality Core Tools training received from any organization.

(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20040719/DEM007LOGO )

Every year the automotive industry invests millions of dollars in training for automotive quality and yet new product launches are still being delayed and/or compromised because of quality performance shortfalls.

The goal of AIAG's Supply Chain Institute is to reduce the incidents and unplanned costs associated with new-product launch delays because of quality issues and to measure investment return on quality training dollars for suppliers.

"More training in Quality Core Tools is not what the industry needs, but rather quality education - and the difference is testing," said J. Scot Sharland, executive director of AIAG. "AIAG is the source of the Quality Core Tools intellectual property, so it is fitting that we bring the industry the first Quality Core Tools certification of its kind. We're excited about the potential benefits it will bring to the industry."

Certificate holders will belong to an elite group of quality professionals that can demonstrate Quality Core Tool proficiency to their employers, while the organizations that employ them can demonstrate these same qualifications to their customers.

"The Supply Chain Institute demonstrates AIAG's leadership in providing the right products and services that can bring solid benefits to its members," said Joe Bransky, General Motors representative to the International Automotive Task Force (TS 16949), and a member of the Supplier Quality Requirements Task Force. "The focus and global potential of the Supply Chain Institute is very important at this time. This launch initiative is addressing an important pull signal from the market, and I support it."

Each Quality Core Tool five-year certification will verify that the individual has the foundation to meet the competency requirements as defined in ISO/TS 16949:2002 clauses and the applicable Quality Core Tool reference manual. Certification to each specific Quality Core Tool requires successful completion of both a knowledge and application exam.

"Knowledge of the core tools is very important to automotive OEM customers for all their suppliers," confirmed Russ Hopkins, supplier technical assistance, Ford Motor Co., and a member of the Supplier Quality Requirements Task Force.

Certification will be conducted at AIAG's Supply Chain Institute, headquartered in Southfield, Mich., or can be held at a company's own facility. AIAG plans to extend the Supply Chain Institute into other countries, including China and India.

The cost per core tool exam is $295 for full-time employees of an AIAG member company, or $395 for non-members.

"Some people who have been working in the automotive quality field for some time might feel ready to undergo the certification process right away," said Sharland. "Others, however, will want to take the training first before attempting certification or will use the AIAG training as a refresher course."

Individuals not ready for certification can receive training in the core tools and ISO/TS 16949:2002 through a full range of AIAG training courses (class information available at http://www.aiag.org/).

About AIAG

Founded in 1982, AIAG is headquartered in the metro Detroit area. Its member companies include North American, European and Asia-Pacific OEMs and suppliers to the automotive industry with combined annual sales of more than $850 billion. A not-for-profit association, AIAG's primary goals are to reduce cost and complexity within the automotive supply chain and to improve speed to market, product quality, employee health-and-safety and the environment. Additional information is available on the Internet at http://www.aiag.org/.

CONTACT: Leslie Santos-Cotham of Automotive Industry Action Group, +1-248-358-9794

Web site: http://www.aiag.org/
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jun 8, 2006
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