Production Part Approval Process (PPAP)

What is PPAP? || What purpose of PPAP? || PPAP Process Map || PPAP Documents || Characteristics classification table || PPAP Customer Notification & Submission Requirements || PPAP Submission Levels || Part Submission Status || Common Mistakes

In this digital world, any standard manuals and related materials are easily available on internet & markets, but here I prepared the course materials / article designed to provide comprehensive knowledge to you'll on understanding the requirements of production part approval process (PPAP) & implementation procedures in simple language and with example in easier manner.

This procedure / guideline is the structural process for carrying out production part approval process for material suppliers and show you the basic content and rules of the production part approval process for education / training purpose.

What is PPAP?

Documents for Approval of Supplier Processes to ensure supplier processes capability and defect free supply by preventing the defect.

A process to ensure the company has the capability to produce the product(s) and consistently meeting these requirements during an actual production run at the specified production rate. The product and manufacturing process approval must be recognized by the customer.

Simply, the supplier provides the documents to customer i.e. submitting production part (samples) with related / required documents for approvals that is Production part approval process(PPAP).

What is purpose of PPAP?

The production part approval process (PPAP) focus on the generic requirements of customer engineering design and specification requirements, supplier should properly understand and the process has the potential to produce consistently convention theses customer needs during mass production at the marked production values.

PPAP Process Map: Table

What Results
(Process Indicators)
Inputs By Whom
How? PPAP Process Outputs
Cases identified, Reported of rejection during customer approval processes. Inputs
  • Customer Purchase Order/ Customer-specific Requirements;
  • Customer Part Design Requirements;
  • Customer Process Design Requirements;
  • Customer Specifications;
  • Customer Logistics Requirements
Personal in charge - As Per Defined PPAP form (Quality assurance & Production peoples according to organization Chart), qualified in process / product knowledge. How is this process controlled, including use of procedures, work instructions, and methods?
>> Support Procedures / Processes (Who & How?)
>> Procedures/Control Documents
PPAP process
  • Project Owner & Team;
  • Gather Information;
  • Completion of PPAP Required Items;
  • Completion of part submission warrant;
  • Submission (or Resubmission) Of PPAP Warrant;
  • Record of Approved part submission warrant;
  • Receipt & Approval of Submitted Part submission warrant;
  • Validated Process;
  • Customer Initiated Changes to Part, Specifications, etc.;

PPAP Requirements

The organization shall also meet all customer-specific PPAP requirements. The production part Approval process submission requirements described as above is mandatory to meet all specified requirements. if in case of outcomes are not meet specification, needs to every effort to be made to correct the process so that all product requirements and design requirements are met. See all PPAP requirements and documentation:
  1. Design Records
  2. Authorized Engineering Change Documents
  3. Customer Engineering Approval
  4. Design Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (DFMEA)
  5. Process Flow Diagram
  6. Process Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (PFMEA)
  7. Control Plan
  8. Measurement Systems Analysis (MSA)
  9. Dimensional Results
  10. Records of Material / Performance Test Results
  11. Initial Process Studies
  12. Qualified Laboratory Documentation
  13. Appearance Approval Report (AAR)
  14. Sample Production Parts
  15. Master Sample
  16. Checking Aids
  17. Customer-Specific Requirements
  18. Part Submission Warrant (PSW)

It is mandatory that the supplier shall understood customer requirement e.g. drawing, specifications, and technical requirements etc., by obtain prior approval from the customer exceptions or deviations to PPAP requirements. On failure to meet these requirements, customer must have notified for determining appropriate corrective actions to enclosed all similar products, and the documents maintained for these processes should be available with reference documents. Ok so, let's see how to prepare documentation and perform related activities to successfully approvals from customers as documents & evidences provided to customers:

  1. Design Records

  2. The organization shall have controlled documents of drawing, technical documents and engineering standards received from customers and propriety material / product supplier should maintain controlled documentations of customer approved drawings and standards as customer norms. The supplier must also refer the product drawing of details for assembly / manufacturing processes and relevant standards.

    At documentation & communication side, supplier must verify the amendment, change in the letters, modified and applied date, and changes in drawing must mentioned on the drawings, and standard with the one on customer's purchase order communicated & amended same, more over the internal communication with head of department, team leader updated as appropriately. You have to verify & checked all the updated documents, drawing, standards, norms and design records must be followed during the PPAP activity, and retained in PPAP submission file.

  3. Authorized Engineering Change Documents

  4. Authorized change documents provided by customer incorporated in the part not incorporated in the drawing, but incorporated in the product, part or tooling. During the product development suggestion can raise from product development team in the product, part or tooling by research and development team or engineering team which is not yet incorporated in the product standard or drawing, in such modification or changes are incorporated in the product submitted for production part approvals are highly recommended, the authorized engineering change documents must submit along with approval processes.

  5. Customer Engineering Approval

  6. The organization requires certain modification in customer provided drawing or product specification, prior to the submission for product / part approval should obtain research and development or engineering team approval. All the required modification in drawing or specification should be communicated through customer's responsible personnel. You have remembered that, all the modifications and changes should be enclosed in drawing and the approved document must be submitted with part submission warrant.

  7. Design Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (DFMEA)

  8. Design failure mode & effects analysis (DFMEA) is verify essential and powerful quality tool to analyze a design for potential failures modes and its effects in manufacturing processes. You have to remember that, DFMEA should be carried out by a cross functional approach and actions on prioritized failure modes must be completed and the revised ranking must properly have documented. It is important for organization to immediate recommended actions must be identified for all significant characteristics and critical characteristics on significance basic to minimize the occurrence and detention, subsequently, suggested actions for failure modes having high risk priority number must be recognized to reduce in line with appropriately locations.

  9. Process Flow Diagram

  10. The organization must have and submit a process flow diagram in specific or as customer expected format which should provide full vision of entire manufacturing process. Whether it should start from all incoming raw materials and consumable goods materials inspection to packing and pre-dispatch inspection must be covered and specified all operations depicted with specific symbols. If the any inspection process, operation or process carried out outside the manufacturing facility, it must be mentioned in it.

  11. Process Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (PFMEA)

  12. Process failure mode and effects analysis is a powerful quality tool to analyze a process for potential failure mode and its effects. Organization may develop the same In accordance with FMEA Guidelines as previous article in Generally, organization must develop process failure modes and effects analysis in accordance with customer specific requirements or as provided technical and standards requirements for particular product or family product. And all the required actions to minimize or eliminate high rating should be documented. Some Example classification table as given below:

    Characteristics Classification Table

    Characteristics Occurrence Severity Description / Concern
    Critical Characteristics ---- 9-10 Government Rules & Regulation, Factory Acts & Low, Safety Related
    Significant Characteristics 5 & Above 5-8 Customer Satisfaction

    For mass production i.e. mass materials, process failure modes and effects analysis (PFMEA) rating for SEV (severity), OCC (Occurrence), DET (Detection) specified in PPAP manual can be used to accurate rating.

  13. Control Plan

  14. The organization should develop a control plan that describes all methods used for manufacturing & supporting process control and complies with standards and customer requirements. In AIAG reference manual, standard control plan format is available which is highly recommended in case of you had installed ISO / TS 16949 quality system in your organization.

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  15. Measurement Systems Analysis (MSA)

  16. The organization should conduct measurement system analysis and evaluation to performed prior to the initial process capability studies. Measurement system analysis is a Process where statistical studies are being conducted to study the present variation in outcomes of measuring & testing equipment system. In the MSA, gauge capability studies are to be conducted for all existing & new gauges, and it should be verified before use in processes. The MSA studies, e.g. Gauge R & R Study, bias study, stability and linearity study, for available gauges, measurements and inspection & testing equipment.

    Gauge R & R values should be less than 10% & number of distinct characteristics should be 5 or more than 5 is acceptable for MSA according to standards, if the gauge R & R is above the 30% will not be acceptable and immediate corrective action plan should need to perform to reduce at least 10% to 30%.

  17. Dimensional Results

  18. It is necessary that the organization shall have dimensional results for each manufacturing processes, and also required submission of dimensional results for parts produced from the production trail run to customer including number of product / part checked and verified. The organization also needs to provide confirmation that dimensional validation required by the design record and control plan have been completed & outcomes specify compliance with specified requirements. Further, you have to indicate the date of the design record modification level and any authorized engineering / and or technical change document not incorporated in the design record to which product / part is made on its dimensional report.

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  19. Records of Material / Performance Test Results

  20. The organization should maintain records, material test for all the product and product materials where physical, chemical and metallurgical requirement are specified by the design record or control. All product material tests necessary by drawings and associated design specification should be listed along with quantity tested and the actual outcomes of each assessment. In case of the organization can't perform the test at its premises, it can have done from approval accredited laboratory and report must provide and enclosed to PPAP submission record. As the standard practice of supplier management, each incoming materials and services from purchasing from supplier it should be verified and approved supplier for appropriate product / service and listed in approved supplier list.

    Performance test should be conducted for all the products and groups where performance or functional requirements are assumed in applicable standard or specified in customer order. In-process reliability checks and verification are to be conducted on a defined frequency by organization, or as customer expected, mostly reliability testing processes and in-process inspection as well as it's frequency are jointly finalized and defined by both the parties i.e. customer and supplier according to product standards requirements / or end application requirements.

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    The records of test report should must indicate the design records, conducted tests and related specification should be listed along with quantity tested and the actual results of each tests as well as design record change of product tested, quantity and tested date to which the product was tested.

  21. Initial Process Studies

  22. When the organization, no special characteristics has been identified, the customer have right to require demonstration of initial process capability on other characteristics. OK, so how to conduct initial process studies? Let's see

    In initial process capability requirement, Ppk for special characteristics / critical characteristics should be minimum as defined, in case of Ppk is lesser than defined but higher than minimum Ppk defined organization must take initiate corrective actions after the PPAP submission for achieving a minimum Cpk value for minimum value in regular manufacturing processes. Organization shall maintain a minimum CPK value of defined for special characteristics with variable date. In case the Cpk value s lesser than defined minimum value, Full inspection i.e. 100% inspection of the products shall be required the deficiencies are removed and the CPK improve appropriately level.

  23. Qualified Laboratory Documentation

  24. All the testing and inspection for PPAP must performed by qualified laboratory as mentioned by customer requirements. if the inspection & testing process conducted in house laboratory is only used for calibration, hence the laboratory must define its scope. In case of outside laboratory used for testing and inspection processes that should be government approved for accreditation or equivalent of that laboratory. All product tests specified in drawings and related specifications should be listed along with quantity tested and the actual report of each inspection & testing. The external testing results and related documents must be submitted in PPAP documentation and also needs to enclosed all the outside laboratory from where tests are carried out.

  25. Appearance Approval Report (AAR)

  26. You have to verify the design records, in case the design record described each product or parts needs to appearance approval report than you have to prepare a separate report of each one, and all the required criteria must be complied upon satisfactory. Appearance approval report mentioned all the required information, and appearance of product i.e. product color, size, measurements, etc., requirements and is visible to customer, generally photocopy of product with high resolution is recommended must be submit along with the PPAP documents.

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  27. Sample Production Parts

  28. The organization should submit at least three to five samples of the product to customer, unless agreed and mentioned on the product submission warrant, along with applicability table. The sample products should be appropriately measured for dimensional results and the same to be used for fitment trail.

  29. Master Sample

  30. The organization shall retain the master sample for period as long as the product is active plus on year or as production part approval records, or until a new master sample is produced for the same customer - part number and approval process is conducted as per standard or customer reference to meet design records and inspection criteria. You have to retain a master sample for each position as specified by customer, it shall have following details:

    Further, All the master samples should be managed in good conditions, and separately organized with proper identification.

  31. Checking Aids

  32. The organization shall provide any product specific assembly details or part checking aid in case of customer specifically requested and it is also important that, organization shall confirm that all characteristics and features of the checking aid match the measurements and dimensional requirements including like gauges, models, templates specific to the product being submitted. The organization must have drawings for all checking aid, other than the standard instruments, and shall document all released manufacturing design changes that have been integrated in the checking aid at the time of submission.

  33. Customer-Specific Requirements

  34. The organization shall have managed compliance to all specific requirements of customer. Any specific customer requirements identified by head of department or nominated representative is to be sought and mentioned in the part submission warrant and to be carried out by the PPAP implementation cross functional team.

  35. Part Submission Warrant (PSW)

  36. On completion of all the PPAP requirements, the organization prepare and complete the part submission warrant because, this document is used to formalized approvals from customer, hence the organization / supplier must require to submit part submission warrant for approval along with other documents for verifications to approval. It is important for supplier to submit part submission warrant for each part separately, where all of the measurements and test results indicate conformance with appropriate drawings with specification requirements.

Customer Notification & Submission Requirements

When customer notification of PPAP is required

The organization shall notify the head of department / team leader / Representative of any design and process changes as indicated in the table below, in addition to those requirements mentioned PPAP requirements.

Situations Where submission to customer is required

Sr. Requirements
01 A new part / product or previously approved product which has new or modified part no.
02 Correction of a discrepancy on previously submitted part
03 Engineering change to design records, specification or materials
04 For bulk materials, Process technology new to the supplier, not previously used for this product

Change Situations:

Approving authority may waive a formal submission for approval for these additional situations for a subject part. A written waiver should be obtained from the approving authority by filling up PSW. The same should be attached in the PPAP file.

Situations where Notification to customer is required

Sr. Requirements
01 Use of other construction or material than was used in the previously approved part of product
02 Production from new or modified tools including additional or replacement tooling
03 Production Following Refurbishment Modification of tool to increase the performance) or rearrangement (Modification of tool which changes the sequence of product / process flow) of existing tooling or equipment
04 Production from tooling and equipment transferred to a different plant location or from an additional plant location
05 Change of subcontractor for parts, non-equivalent materials, or services that affects customer fit, form, function, durability or performance requirements.
06 Product produced after the tooling has been inactive for volume production for twelve months or more
07 Product and process changes related to components of the production manufactured internally or manufactured by s/c that impact fit, form function, performance.
08 Change in test / inspection method - new technique. Evidence to be provided that the new method provides results equivalent to the old method
09 For bulk materials, new source of raw materials with specific characteristics from new or existing, change in production appearance attributes where there are no appearance specifications, revised parameters in the same process, change outside of design FMEA of the approved product

Situations where Notification to customer is not required

Sr. Requirements
01 Changes to component level drawings - Changes that could not affect customer fit, function, form, durability or performance requirements.
02 Tool / Equipment movement within the same plant - However no change in process flow
03 Changes in equipment (same process flow with same basic technology or methodology).
04 Identical gage replacement
05 Rebalance of operator job content with no change in process flow
06 Changes resulting in reduced risk priority number or process failure mode and effect analysis (with no changes in process flow)
07 For bulk materials, Change within the design failure mode effect analysis of the approved product, changes within process failure mode effect analysis, change which do not affect the special characteristics, Change in approved commodity ingredients, New sources of raw material that has no special characteristics

PPAP Submission Levels

∵ Level 1: production warrant and appearance approval report (if applicable) submitted to customer.
∵ Level 2: Production warrant, Product samples and dimensional results submitted to customer.
∵ Level 3: Production warrant, product samples, and complete supporting date submitted to customer
∵ Level 4: Production warrant and other requirements as defined by customer
∵ Level 5: Production warrant, product samples and complete supporting data (a review will be conducted at the supplier's manufacturing location)

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Description of code used in above table

SD Description
S The organization shall submit to Head of department, team leader or nominated representative- and retain a copy of records or documentation items at appropriate locations
R The organization shall retain at appropriate locations and make readily available to the customer representative upon request.
* The organization shall retain at appropriate location and submit to head of department, team leader or representative upon request

Part submission status

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Part Submission Status "A" = Approved

Part Submission Status "B" = Interim Approved

Permits shipment / dispatch of materials for production requirements on a limited time or quantity basis. Interim approval will be granted only when supplier has:

For bulk materials, generally products get fully approved before initial use, in case full approval is not obtained a bulk material interim approval may be granted. Sample form must indicate for the same.

Part Submission Status "C" = Rejected

PPAP documentation and the part submitted do not meet the customer requirements. corrected documentation and parts to be submitted after necessary correction.

Common Mistakes

First Published On Date: Monday,June 05, 2017 09:00 AM

Author: ARUN RAVAL | Business & Systems Analyst