ISO/TS 16949 for Automotive Suppliers

Will the Big Three car companies require suppliers with QS-9000 certificates to move to ISO/TS 16949? The Supplier Quality Requirements Task Force, which administers QS-9000, stated at AUTO-TECH 2001 that the Big Three firms will announce their plans regarding the second edition of ISO/TS 16949 by the end of this year. The SQRTF is represented on the International Automotive Task Force (IATF) that is responsible for ISO/TS 16949.

The Ford, DaimlerChrysler, and General Motors positions so far have been to encourage, but not require, certification to the worldwide automotive requirements document. The second edition of  ISO/TS 16949 will be based on ISO 9001:2000 and is on schedule to be published during the first quarter of 2002.

Some of the expected benefits of ISO/TS 16949:2002 are:

  • an emphasis on process auditing
  • reduced frequency of 2nd party audits
  • global sourcing advantages
  • elimination of marginal suppliers

Based on the withdrawal of ISO 9001:1994 on 12/15/03, the transition to ISO 9001:2000 and ISO/TS 16949:2002 would have to complete by that date. However, the SQRTF has said it has no plans to revise QS-9000 for ISO 9001:2000. They have an agreement with the International Organization for Standardization to continue using QS-9000 beyond the withdrawal date for ISO 9001:1994. This extended period would apparently apply only to North American suppliers that are already registered to QS-9000.

Subcontractor Compliance

As for subcontractors to QS-9000 suppliers, the QS-9000 Sanctioned Interpretations dated 7/1/01 state that registration to ISO 9001/2:1994 or ISO 9001:2000 by 12/31/02 will be the minimum compliance for a subcontractor under clause (unless the subcontractor has undergone a second-party audit by the OEM or a Tier 1 supplier that meets the OEM’s qualification criteria).

QS-9000 Reference Manuals

Will the QS-9000 reference manuals be used with ISO/TS 16949? The third edition of the Potential Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (FEMA) manual was released in July. The third edition of the Measurement Systems Analysis (MSA) manual is expected by the end of this year.

Although ISO/TS 16949:1999 only refers to these documents as AIAG customer manuals, the new FEMA manual states the reference should be used by suppliers subscribing to QS-9000 or an equivalent document. Since ISO/TS 16949 is the only equivalent recognized by the SQRTF, it appears they expect the reference manuals to be used with the new ISO/TS 16949.