From the Archives of a Common Sensei Volume 29: ENGINEERING CHANGE PROCEDURE FOR INTERCHANGEABLE PARTS (Imported Purchased Parts)

As referenced in Blog volume 28, during the early days (1990’s) of Toyota Industrial Equipment (TIEM) in the US, we had to give consideration to many different processes as we developed the manufacturing operations. In my previous blog postings, I have tried to describe in (short form) how we went about many of these operational developments.

This article is a continuation of an important (critical) process – Engineering Change for imported interchangeable parts. In this blog (Volume 29) I will present Engineering Change Procedure for Import Parts that were categorized as Interchangeable. In volume 30, I will present the process for imported but non interchangeable parts. Frankly, the handwritten original examples are too big to display at the same time, so I split this engineering change process into three volumes to simplify the overall process of engineering change. Some of you might be more concerned with an engineering change procedure for domestic parts and some might be more concerned with imported parts. The three articles in Blogs 28, 29, and 30 are presented here to potentially give you ideas for your organization.

In the example supplied here (Vol. 29) for Imported Interchangeable Purchased Parts, it is noted that during those early days of the TIEM startup (1989+) the engineering was done by the TIEM parent company (TAL) and delivered to the TIEM operation (Domestic Company) in Columbus, Indiana. From that point, the process example tracks through the Parental Company actions, Domestic Company Engineering Section, Production Section, and the Material Control Section, and Accounting. In the mid-1990’s a substantial portion of product engineering was a joint effort by the local facility and the parent company in Japan. In previous blogs, I have explained how we encouraged customer, plant associates, and managers to work with Engineering to create improvements in quality, cost, convenience, service needs, etc.

In the example provided here, it is obvious that even in the 1990’s much of the process involved manual or semi-manual operational steps, as well as integrated into the ordering system. To control product quality and waste while introducing changes, it did involve significant manual intervention! Again, this example, the previous example (Vol. 28), and the next blog postings are intended only as examples from which you may be able to gain some ideas.

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