Strengthening Quality-Related Education
In order to facilitate greater product value and to better meet the expectations of customers, the NGK Group provides employees with quality-related education focused on acquiring skills that can be used to incorporate specific customer needs into new products.
NGK, along with other Group companies, is continuously working to improve quality management system (QMS) training, which incorporates real-life topics into practical training and the promotion of operational improvement measures.
Main Practical Programs Strengthened in FY2018
|Program name||Number of days and participants||Objective|
49 (manufacturing staff in their third year)
|Learn statistical quality control methods and apply them to solving problems relevant to the individual participant's operational duties|
|Quality Basic II||50 days;
60 (engineering staff in their third year) and 1 from Group company
|Learn basic quality control methods and apply them to solving real-life problems|
|Quality Control Training for Group Companies||3 days; 10 from Akechi Insulators 10 days; 19 from Soshin Electric (Nagano and Miyazaki)||QCI level practical training implemented by NGK|
|Learning from Failure and Methods of Creation||9.5 days (including 7-day exercises and 1-day presentation);
119 (total number of participants)
|Improve analytical skills and the ability to identify broader applications so that failures can be actively capitalized upon as resources for future potential|
|Quality Basic III-3||Design reviews: 0.5 day (twice);
49 (total number of participants)
|Develop an understanding of in-house initiatives to functionally strengthen DR, and engage in classroom and hands-on learning on effective risk elimination procedures|
|Prevention Training||Product liability seminar: 0.5 day; 17||Develop an understanding of product liability laws, including how such laws have been applied in specific B2B cases, in order to heighten participants' mindfulness of quality-related risks|
|Seminar to increase awareness: 1 day; 14||Understand basic approaches to preventive action and recurrence prevention; understand risk examination procedures|
|Issue examination and discussion: 3 days; 25
(total number of participants)
|Perform risk examination using actual quality issues faced Preventive Action by course participants|
|QMS Training||Lecture on ISO/IATF standards: 1 day; 98 and 11 from Group company||Develop an understanding of the intent and key requirements of standards|
|Internal quality auditor training: 2 days; 81 and 10 from Group company||Cultivate and certify internal quality auditors|
|Strengthening internal auditing capability: 1 day; 116 and 5 from Group company||Strengthening QMS, quality compliance, and process auditing ability|
Points of Strengthening Quality-Related Education
Quality Basic III-3 Design Review
Design review simulation training run by outside instructors was held after basic instruction in effective risk elimination procedures. This training helped participants reinforce what they have learned while fostering greater attentiveness to design checkpoints as well as overlooked areas in risk elimination.
In response to concerns about insufficient attentiveness to quality-related risks in the market, a seminar on product liability laws, which included real-life B2B examples, was held in conjunction with the Legal Department.
53 Employees Pass Self-Maintenance Expert Test (Grade 1: 30 Employees, Grade 2: 23 Employees)
Fifty-three manufacturing division and engineering center employees who are engaged in NGK's voluntary maintenance activities passed the Self-Maintenance Expert Test (Japan Institute of Plant Maintenance) conducted in October (Grade 1: 30 employees, Grade 2: 23 employees). This qualification is given to those who possess a broad range of knowledge and skills necessary concerning quality management, safety, and machinery maintenance, and are certified to have the ability of planning and implementing voluntary maintenance activities and giving instruction. NGK will continue to encourage employees to acquire such qualifications in order to improve quality management capabilities at manufacturing sites.
Offering Award Recipients an Opportunity to Visit Overseas Sites
From the end of October to the beginning of November, four fiscal 2017 QuiC Outstanding Proposal Commendation recipients and two fiscal 2018 QuiC Grand Prize recipients visited NGK-Locke Polymer Insulators (NLPI) and NGK Metals (NMC), two Group companies in the U.S. At the company, visitors and local employees conducted improvement point (awareness) training and shared opinions on best practices.
This program is organized to help participants better understand the importance of the mother factory in Japan, as well as to encourage self-development. It is also expected to inspire the local workers to appreciate the importance of quality improvement, thus accelerating the overall efforts of the Group.
In December, another six fiscal 2017 Outstanding Proposal Commendation recipients and 10 fiscal 2018 Excellence Award and Special Award recipients visited Okinawa to attend a nationwide QC Circle Conference and participate in discussion sessions.