Supplier Quality Standards Association

Image was modified from the original downloaded from

All of the technology we take for granted today was made possible through standardization. Without standardization, every part would be unique. Imagine attempting to build anything where such simple parts as bolts, nuts and screws were not standardized! With such inconsistencies, there would be no interchangeable parts. And with no interchangeable parts, there would have been no industrial revolution... no mass production.

Standardization provides a solid foundation for each new generation of inventors to build upon the innovations that preceded them. And it allows for the manufacture of complex items on a large scale. Consequently, the advancements that created the modern world were made possible through standardization.

The Mission of SQSA Standards

SQSA celebrates free market economies through focusing on "Business-to-Business" (B2B) relationships and supplier excellence.

Where existing standards accomplish that goal, we applaud them. However, where existing standards are poorly crafted, contain antiquated concepts, or promote mediocrity, we will develop alternative standards... providing businesses with tools to increase their competitive advantage through improving their supply chain.

Key Criterion for SQSA Standards

Acknowledging that quality is a critical driver for the success of any free-market enterprise, SQSA has established key criterion specifying that each supplier quality standard we develop must:

Represent the "Voice of the Customer"
Development of supplier quality standards must be driven by those who assign "value" to those standards. Whether quality, procurement, or supply chain professionals, this group must consist of those individuals within a business involved with the qualification, selection, and monitoring of suppliers. The purpose of each supplier quality standard is to clearly and accurately communicate the requirements and expectations of those customers.

Promote consistent interpretation and application
While many standards are developed for "generic" application, the use of terms/phrases that promote ambiguity/subjectivity and/or the inclusion of nebulous/vague requirements, results in confusion leading to inconsistency in their interpretation and application; diminishing the value of that standard.

Be verifiable
Each requirement must be associated with clear, unambiguous, objective evidence allowing for verification of implementation. Where the number of subjective or unverifiable requirements increases, the value of that standard decreases... until it is of little or no value.

The purpose of supplier quality standards is to define minimum requirements for "controls" to identify and eliminate, or mitigate, risks to satisfying customer requirements and any established expectations (commitments) relating to the provision of products and/or services. In order for a standard to retain its value, it must evolve to incorporate new, innovative ideas that have been tested, proven, and adopted as "best practices" in eliminating or mitigating these risks. The only time in which a quality standard should remain static, is when an industry is so mature, and its risks to satisfying customer requirements so well managed, that the standard continues to add value through promoting consistency.

The Goal of SQSA Standards

The goal of SQSA standards is simple:

To improve the level of quality your supply chain provides through reducing the number of defects and late shipments received.

As this goal is achieved, your business should experience reductions in the administrative costs associated with the amount of time spent by personnel:

  • resolving quality/delivery issues with suppliers
  • managing Corrective Action Requests issued to suppliers
  • managing supplier charge-backs (i.e., cost recovery), wherein the supplier is charged for any additional costs incurred due to non-conforming products (e.g., components, materials, sub-assemblies) or services
  • dispositioning "in-process" nonconformities (as fewer items of nonconforming material/product will be entering the value stream)

As a result, your business should be able to further reduce costs through:

  • Reducing the number of receiving inspection personnel needed through implementing:
    • Relaxed sampling inspection levels for low risk items
    • A Dock-to-Stock Program for low-risk items/material
    • A Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI) Program for low-risk items/material
  • Reductions of "Safety Stock" (freeing floor/warehouse space)

SQSA Home Page

SQSA Home Page Training & Resources Lean-6TM Auditor Certification


Copyright © 2019-2020 Supplier Quality Standards Association
All rights reserved.

Contact Us