Advanced quality planning

Advanced Product Quality Planning is the basis for the avoidance of potential faults and for a continuous improvement. The Advanced Product Quality Planning process includes all steps from development to series production. It has been developed to ensure that in the running series, sub-supplier parts are available at the right time, at the right place, in the right quantity and quality and at the agreed price. WIKA reserves the right to support the Advanced Product Quality Planning of the supplier regarding selected projects. However, it is generally recommended that the suppliers use the WIKA APQP checklist or coordinate it with the content of their own documents.

1. Drawings / specifications / standards

Already when placing the order, WIKA provides a drawing and/or a 3D data record with the revision status ≥ 01. The supplier's tool conception is based on this status and the confirmed feasibility analysis for critical components. WIKA specifications indicated in the drawing are provided by WIKA.

Generally applicable standards and specifications

The supplier has to make sure that all documents required in the drawing or necessary for the production are up-to-date

2. Project schedule

The project schedule, if required, must be presented to project purchasing before the order is placed. It includes all relevant steps, deadlines and milestones of the project process. The supplier has to evaluate and document the approvals of the individual stages of the product and process development. For each phase of the project, the supplier will present the schedule to project purchasing without being requested to do so.

3. Process flow chart

The process flow chart which is a graphical representation of the entire production process is established by WIKA on request. It is completed by a short description of the individual production and test steps.


FMEA is a systematic analytical method to evaluate possible faults and their effects. It is a know-how memory which makes decisions more traceable. The supplier has to establish a product-related FMEA which must be updated regularly on the basis of reject quantities and customer complaints. WIKA accepts a division into process- and product-related FMEAs. If necessary, a coordination with the WIKA FMEA will be made.

5. Control plan

The control plan describes the system and the product control processes by listing the individual test steps, testing devices, test frequencies and documentation. It includes amongst others all special (critical/significant) features which are indicated in the drawing and specifications or have been derived from the FMEA. Machine and process capability studies must be scheduled, when necessary (see also point 9). If required, the control plan is requested, when the order for first articles is placed.

6. Reference gauges / measuring equipment / measurement system analysis

In order to make sure that correct units are produced, it is necessary to choose suitable measuring equipment. The supplier is responsible for the selection, use and regular inspection of the measuring equipment. The suitability of the measuring equipment is verified by means of a Measurement System Analysis. If required, WIKA can send the form to be used for this purpose to the supplier. Reference gauges are produced in coordination with WIKA. The supplier has to make sure that the customer's property remains intact and is properly stored. The monitoring of the measuring equipment is the responsibility of the owner.

 7. Traceability

In order to guarantee a traceability back to the receipt of goods, the supplier must make sure that all materials and parts are marked and each manufacturing step can be clearly identified. The marking gives information on the material which has been used, the article number, quantity, batch number, manufacturing date, manufacturing status as well as the in-process inspections performed with the corresponding inspection note. This documentation system guarantees the localisation of all products. In coordination with the responsible buyer, the maximum lot size that can be delimited is defined taking into account economic aspects and the related risk. WIKA reserves the right to specify the maximum delimitable lot size.

8. Part history

WIKA recommends its suppliers to establish a part history including all material, product, tool and process modifications as well as the date of use (lot number / delivery date) for each article number that will be used in series production. After having conferred with WIKA, parts belonging to a product family can also be summarised in one history. However, WIKA reserves the right to require a separate part history for certain projects. WIKA can request the part history from the supplier at any time and without restrictions

9. Functional checks

The supplier must carry out all functional checks in accordance with the drawing and the relevant specifications as a part of the first article inspection.

10. Machine and process capability studies

Prior to the first article inspection, the supplier has to carry out machine and process capability studies in accordance with the criteria marked in the drawing. The target CMK/CPK values are defined by WIKA in the first article inspection report, depending on the evaluated process.

11. Preventive maintenance

The supplier is obliged to guarantee a procedure for preventive maintenance by means of which the ability to supply can be assured at any time. This plan includes amongst others the following points:

  • Equipment for maintenance/repairs
  • Storage and overhaul
  • Fitting and retrofitting
  • Tool change program for wearing tools

If one of these tasks is assigned to a sub-contractor, the supplier has to establish a control and traceability system. It must be guaranteed that a tool can be clearly attributed to its owner without any doubt during the whole process..

12. Emergency plan

An emergency strategy is to be developed for processes having effect on the ability to supply (e.g. special tools / bottleneck machines / testing devices / spare parts supply / machines and measuring equipment / interruption of power, gas or water supply).

13. Products provided by WIKA

For products and packaging provided by WIKA, the supplier will carry out an incoming inspection during which the provided parts are checked for quantity, identity and visually recognisable damage. Measuring requirements will be coordinated with WIKA.

14. Prototypes and pilot lot parts

All prototypes and pre-series parts must be marked clearly and sufficiently according to the illustrated development status. A sample (prototype) = products and materials which have not been manufactured entirely under series production conditions. B sample (pilot lot) = sample that has not yet been manufactured using the equipment and procedures provided for the later series production and/or partially under series production conditions.

15. Process sign-off

WIKA carries out process sign-offs based on the WIKA checklist in the premises of the suppliers. The process sign-off is planned in coordination with the responsible department of the supplier. WIKA can carry out the process sign-off within the scope of the first article inspection (e.g. new supplier). When the sign-off is finished, the supplier will be informed on the audit result within one working week, but usually the information is given on the visiting day. If the result requires improvement measures, the supplier must elaborate an action plan and send it to the WIKA Lead Auditor within the agreed period of time. The process sign-off includes the capacity studies, the observance of delivery periods, documents for the first article inspection and an Advanced Product Quality Planning. Optionally, WIKA will carry out a process audit according to VDA 6.3 (see element series delivery, point 7 (6), process audit).

16. Material data acquisition

If requested by WIKA, material data acquisition will be part of the sampling inspection. The supplier will input the necessary data into the system and will make them available to WIKA free of charge. Furthermore, the supplier must present a disposal or recycling concept.

IMDS (International Material Data System)

The term IMDS describes an archiving, exchange and management system for the automotive industry. On the basis of this system, a material data sheet is created indicating all materials used for a component together with the proportional material components as well as all data necessary for later recycling the vehicle part.

REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of  Chemicals)

REACH is an EU chemicals regulation which came into force on 1 June 2007. Being an EU regulation, REACH is equally and directly applicable in all member states.

RoHs (Restriction of the Use of Certain Hazardous Substances)

The EC Directive 2002/95/EC on the Restriction of the Use of Certain Hazardous Substances in electrical and electronic equipment regulates the use of hazardous substances in instruments and components. This directive and its transposition into national law are designated with the abbreviation RoHS.

17. First article inspection

The first article inspection is the last step of the pilot lot phase and leads to series production. It includes the final inspection and approval of the components for use in series production. First articles are products which have already been manufactured by means of series production equipment at the intended site and under series process conditions. This is meant to guarantee that the products manufactured by the supplier meet all WIKA requirements in accordance with the drawings and specifications. C sample (zero series) = sample that has been manufactured exclusively by means of the equipment and procedures provided for series production under the respective boundary conditions. Components with a revision index of 01 and more. The first article inspection is free of charge for WIKA.

First article inspection report

WIKA makes the form available to the supplier immediately after placing the order. The supplier will complete this report. If multiple-cavity tools are used, a first article inspection will be carried out for each cavity.

Submission stages

Basically, WIKA reserves the right to decide on the submission stage. Level 3 indicated in the PPF procedure (VDA volume 2) is regarded as standard.

Sending documents and approval of parts

The complete documents must be stored in a folder which is to be sent by e-mail to The first article parts must be marked sufficiently before sending them to WIKA since marking ensures that the parts can be assigned to the inspection report. The supplier may not deliver any series parts to WIKA until they have been approved in written form.

Second sample inspection

WIKA reserves the right to charge the supplier for the costs of a second sample inspection if the first article approval cannot be given due to an insufficient preparation on the part of the supplier.

18. Reference sample

A reference sample should help to achieve the required quality level, which is particularly important when the available data is insufficient or not clear and consequently the parts cannot be approved.
WIKA recommends the supplier to keep at least one reference sample together with the first article inspection documents for the required time period. The reference sample must be marked as such and have the same dimensions as the delivered parts. Unless agreed otherwise, the supplier must keep a reference sample for each cavity of a tool or process.

19. Acceptance test certificates

If required by WIKA in the order documents or in the technical documentation, the latest version of the inspection certificate according to DIN EN ISO 10204 must be established. Exceptions from this rule must be negotiated separately and must be documented in the order. The inspection results will be certified by a department which is independent from the manufacturing department and confirmed by an expert designated by the manufacturer. Inspection results on the basis of specific tests, i.e. tests according to the technical conditions specified in the order are part of the inspection certificate. To determine whether the parts meet the requirements specified in the order, the nominal and actual values must be clearly indicated. The nominal values will be taken from the technical documentation. The acceptance test certificate must be available to WIKA in electronic form on receipt of the goods at the latest.

20. Packaging

Packaging takes effect on the product quality and must therefore be chosen together with WIKA before starting the series production. If necessary, transport and packaging tests must be scheduled in order to check that the packaging is suitable.

21. Retention periods

In view of the limitation periods for product liability claims, it is recommended that the supplier retains the material up to 30 years.

22. Requalification

Requalification is a periodic check of the component in question. Where appropriate, requalification will be made via self-certification (VDA 2,4.10). The extent and frequency of requalification are to be agreed with the responsible WIKA SQE.

23. Standard and catalogue parts and materials

  • Sampling inspections of standard parts and materials =>  first article inspection is not required
  • Sampling inspections of catalogue parts and materials => only on special request by WIKA





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