Quality Certifications for Manufacturing – AS9100 vs ISO 9001


PFI is proud to announce its recent recertification with ISO 9001-2015 and AS9100D, displaying our commitment to quality in machining and fabrication. You may be curious about the significance of these certifications and how they influence the choice of a manufacturing partner. In this article, we explore the essence of ISO 9001-2015 and AS9100D certifications, shedding light on the process of attaining them and what clients can anticipate from a business with these credentials.

Quality is crucial when selecting a manufacturing partner, and certifications such as ISO 9001 and AS9100 play a pivotal role in the decision-making process. These certifications validate the quality of production, services, and equipment, making them essential considerations for enterprises seeking reliable and high-quality manufacturing collaborations.

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Understanding Manufacturing Industry Certifications

AS9100 and ISO 9001 are important certifications to look for when considering manufacturing partners. Reputable manufacturing companies take these certifications seriously, demonstrating their commitment to excellence.

Here’s an overview of these two essential certifications:

ISO 9001-2015 Certification

Devised by the International Standards Organization (ISO), the ISO 9001-2015 certification ensures that products and services are generated or manufactured with the highest quality standards. ISO 9001-2015 is the global standard for quality management systems and requires a stringent auditing process to receive certification. The focus of the audits centers on management, resources, products and services, and measurements and improvements. Achieving ISO 9001:2015 certification means that PFI has demonstrated its ability to:

  • Follow the ISO 9001 standard guidelines and complete all necessary courses or training
  • Successfully implement the guidelines into our own operations
  • Fulfill all applicable statutory and regulatory requirements
  • Maintain documentation demonstrating compliance
  • Have completed successful audits of our systems

The basis of the ISO 9001-2015 certification calls for careful documentation and continual improvement within the company’s quality management system. To remain certified, audits are conducted every three years. The ISO 9001-2015 certification can benefit businesses by increasing customer confidence, process assessment, continual optimization, and effective customer complaint resolution. The compliance of ISO 9001-2015 has been a great asset to several industries such as manufacturing, construction management/engineering, IT services, hospital and healthcare industries, and community services.

AS9100 Certification

The AS9100 certification, like the ISO 9001, establishes standards for the quality management system. Applied with the same rigor and auditing process, and developed by the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE), the AS9100 takes the requirements of the ISO 9001 certification and hones them in on the specifications of the defense industries and aerospace industries. For the AS9100 certification, following regulations, meeting industry standards, achieving customer requirements, and keeping accurate documentation must be compliant. To become certified, PFI undergoes yearly audits to ensure compliance with the AS9100D guidelines.

With the continuous technological advancements and evolution in the aerospace industry, the quality standards required through AS9100 ensure that aerospace manufacturers meet the highest quality and safety standards. These elevated standards are also achieved by additional requirements of AS9100 for increased quality and risk management. Enterprises that hold the AS9100 certification can receive significant benefits of operating under such high standards. AS9100 can increase operation efficiency, improve customer satisfaction, and gain leverage on their competition.

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AS9100D Documentation Requirements

Another significant component of AS9100D requirements and certification is the ability to document compliance with the published standards. This requires the retention of a long list of documentation and data that demonstrates PFI’s ability to maintain and control its quality management systems. Some examples of documentation include:

  • The Quality Policy and the Quality Objectives
  • Documentation of the scope of the quality management systems
  • Evidence that the standards and practices are being carried out as outlined
  • Evidence of consistent monitoring
  • Proof of conformity of the products and/or services
  • Confirmation that various products and services meet all applicable design and development controls
  • The ability to trace product design and development
  • An established process for addressing nonconforming products
  • Evidence of the implementation of the audit program and audit results
  • Documentation of the process of any corrective actions taken and the results of those actions

Benefits of ISO 9001-2015 and AS9100D Certification Standards

There are several significant benefits for the customers who utilize the products and services from companies that hold ISO 9001-2015 and AS9100D certifications. Enlisting the services of a company that operates under these high-quality control standards can provide its customers with consistently high-quality products that meet industry standards. Customers benefit from cost reduction and increased satisfaction through greater production reliability, service, and delivery. Organizations that hold the AS9100 certification can also expect to receive enhanced documentation and traceability of their components back to the manufacturer.

Businesses that hold these quality management certifications can also reap many benefits. Enhanced market and recognition will significantly grow as will the client base as the operations are conducted under stringent international quality standards. ISO 9001 and AS9100 certifications usher in a more effective and efficient operational process and increase employee productivity and involvement. Finally, certified enterprises will see benefits in their bottom line. Financial performances have been shown to improve, as does customer service and satisfaction. The ISO 9001-2015 and AS9100D designations provide businesses with a distinct advantage over their competitors.

Importance of Recertification of Manufacturing Industry Certifications

The recertification process for ISO 9001 and AS9100D occurs every three years. For organizations that pursue recertification, the benefits to their business operations and quality management are immense. Recertification is a critical part of the maintenance of the quality management system, the continual cycle of auditing ensures consistency and improvement within the organization. Recertification of industry standards provides validation of the organization’s credentials and builds confidence and satisfaction with customers. Upholding certifications in ISO 9001 and AS9100 is a commitment to quality, but also a responsibility to nurture the continual improvement of the enterprise and its quality management system.

PFI’s Industry Quality Certifications for Manufacturing

Achieving and maintaining ISO 9001-2015 and AS9100D certifications is a complex and ongoing process that only some machining and fabrication companies undertake. PFI is proud to hold several industry quality certifications, including ISO 9001 and AS9100, and is committed to providing our customers with industry-leading quality and customer satisfaction. Contact PFI today for your next machining or fabrication project, and experience the reliability and expertise of the certified team at PFI.

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Brian Schubel

Brian Schubel is an accomplished Shop Manager and Machinist who began his career in 1985 with Albert Seisler Machine Corp. In January 2006, PFI acquired the Seisler business, and Brian became a PFI employee. In his 38+ years tenure in the shop he has be known as “the Mayor,” Brian has always been the go-to guy for all issues related to machining, fabrication and assembly. Other employees have relied on Brian’s knowledge and experience to guide them in their daily activities.