IATF 16949 Interpretations and FAQs

The International Automotive Task Force (IATF) has issued the first set of IATF 16949:2016 “Sanctioned Interpretations” and “Frequently Asked Questions”.

The sanctioned interpretations are for these clauses:

S1. Definition of customer requirements (3.1)
S2. Product safety (
S3. Contingency plans (
S4. Internal auditor competency (7.2.3)
S5. Quality management system documentation (
S6. Special characteristics (
S7. Type and extent of control – supplemental (
S8. Supplier quality management system development (
S9. Customer authorization for concession (

You can download these interpretations at this web page.

The frequently asked questions are:

Foreword – Automotive QMS Standard

 1. Why are there two manuals (IATF 16949:2016 and ISO 9001:2015)? Two manuals instead of one manual makes it much more difficult to read and understand the requirements.

2. Why are the two manuals (IATF 16949:2016 and ISO 9001:2015) so much more expensive than the ISO/TS 16949 version?

3. What should be done if translation errors are discovered in the IATF 16949 standard?

Product Safety (

4. What is the scope of the product safety clause ( Many organizations focus on regulatory/statutory requirements of the product and do not believe they have product safety related manufacturing product or processes.

Organizational Roles, Responsibilities, and Authorities – Supplemental (5.3.1)

5. Is the intent that responsibilities be assigned to the function (e.g. Quality), a specific title (e.g. Quality Director) or a named individual (e.g. Bob Smith)?
Measurement System Analysis (

6. Are MSA studies required for each instrument or device?

External Laboratory (

7. 1 When can the equipment manufacturer be used to calibrate inspection and test equipment? If an accredited laboratory exists but is very remote and/or expensive and the inspection or test equipment manufacturer is nearby and available can they be used (even if they are not accredited to ISO/IEC 17025)?

7.2 If the organization has inspection, measuring and test equipment in the final assembly and test area, is it considered an internal laboratory?

Quality Management System Documentation

8. Does the document (which could be a table, list or a matrix) have to include non-IATF OEMs and Tier 1s? Do all customer requirements beyond CSR’s need to be included in the document?

Statutory and Regulatory Requirements (
Statutory and Regulatory Conformity (8.6.5)

9.1 What is the perspective (on statutory and regulatory conformity)? What is considered sufficient evidence of conformity to applicable statutory and regulatory requirements (8.6.5)?

9.2 Did the intent of clause change from ISO/TS 16949 to IATF 16949?

9.3 How do you manage and maintain current knowledge of statutory and regulatory requirements for international suppliers?

9.4 How can our system comprehend the statutory and regulatory requirements if they are not communicated to the organization by the customer?

Automotive Product-Related Software or Automotive Products with Embedded Software (

10.1 What is the definition of “embedded software”? When is it applied?

10.2 If the organization does not develop the embedded software, how does the organization have expertise to evaluate the software provided by a supplier?

Nonconforming Product Disposition (

11.1 What is the intent and requirements for “rendering unusable” prior to disposal? When and where does the “rendering unusable” of product need to occur?

11.2 How does the organization control this?

11.3 Can the organization use a service provider to render the product unusable?

11.4 Does nonconforming product disposition apply only to final product or does it also apply to component/interim sub-assembly?

11.5 For rendering unusable, how much damage needs to be done to the nonconforming product?

You can download the answers to these questions at this web page.

If you’d like to arrange an onsite 2.5-day “IATF 16949:2016 Requirements” course, please contact Larry Whittington at Larry@WhittingtonAssociates.com.