We expect everyone to participate positively in the task of improving the quality of our products and services.
Our Quality Policy clearly defines the commitment we make to secure the reliability of our products. Across the Group we drive learning from the problems we face, place strong controls on detecting defects, seek to understand the root cause of any quality issue (taking immediate action to remediate) and apply Lean principles to improve quality, productivity and manufacturing flexibility. In the past few years, we have continued our focus on understanding the causes of repeat customer complaints, conducting full investigations using the 8D methodology to resolve them, and then permanently eliminating these issues. As a result, the number of quality issues where we were unable to define the root cause declined by more than 50% in 2015.
Our supplier quality development programme has been refined to ensure the conformity and consistency of incoming raw materials. In parallel we have reinforced incoming inspections at our manufacturing sites.
Training remains a fundamental part of our quality story. Turbo Q, our in-house quality training programme developed to launch the Quality Breakthrough initiative in 2013, continues to deliver results and has been expanded to cover specific areas in more detail such as sales and product development. In 2015, over 300 staff were trained in elements of our quality programme.
Reliability in quality and delivery is vital to our customers as they use Vesuvius’ products in critical areas of their own processes. The level of risk attached to a catastrophic failure is often such that, for people and equipment, no compromise can be accepted. Reliability therefore is a primary commitment of Vesuvius. We deliver this through best-in-class quality management in our 71 production sites and 116 customer locations (as of May 2016).
Reliability also flows from a close cooperation with customers’ operations, the permanent presence of engineers and technicians at customers’ locations and the level of service and expertise provided.
Reliability is maintained within the global process of innovation and continuous improvement through strict testing procedures and transparency with customers on the protocols Vesuvius follows to validate any change in Vesuvius’ products.
Service is part of the Vesuvius culture. The quality of the service delivery derives from a deep understanding of customers’ processes and expectations, intimate knowledge of their needs and efforts to increase their performance at all levels of their value chain.
Vesuvius’ plants are close to many of the customers that they serve which means that they can deliver goods and technical service at very short notice. Vesuvius experts are in permanent contact with customers’ operations to provide support with creative solutions and new technologies, based on their access to the unrivalled experience acquired across the world and throughout the industry.