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52 SMT007 MAGAZINE I JULY 2018 ing conduct weekly reviews to ensure success- ful contract completion and collaboratively resolve issues that have come up during the week before. 5. Meticulous parts ordering and receiving process. The purchasing department orders all mate- rials (components, hardware, PCBs, wire, sheet metal) listed on the BOM (bill of materials) for each job. When materials are received, they go through incoming inspection according to a counterfeit parts mitigation procedure, and part accuracy is verified against the customer BOM. Once correct, the parts are placed in a job kit box. Prior to its release to manufactur- ing, quality assurance (QA) audits all produc- tion kits for compliance to "machine ready" requirements, BOM completeness, and compo- nent integrity. Each job is serialized so that it can easily be tracked throughout the manufac- turing process. 6. Create a production lot traveler (PLT) and assembly instructions (AI). The PLT lists the operations required to fabri- cate/assemble/inspect/test each item. The AI is the actual instructions used to assem- ble the product. These are both reviewed by the production manager and quality assur- ance and approved for use. The production manager assigns the job to assembly person- nel and they review the PLT and the AI. The item is then assembled in accordance with the PLT and AI and inspected by quality assurance at in-process and final inspection. All of these checks and balances ensure that a contract can be completed on time, on budget and with zero defects. Each step in the process allows for adjustments or corrections to occur real time, instead of discovering them at the end of the build or worse, when it's already arrived at the end user. SMT007 Stephanie Weaver is a business development manager at Zentech Manufacturing. Figure 1: Example of a production lot traveler.

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