3 Supplier Quality Management Software Innovations

ARMATURE has a long history of building enterprise software solutions for Standards Developing Organizations and Conformity Assessment Bodies, and that experience has led to some innovations and breakthroughs that we’ve applied to our quality management software platform for manufacturers, ARMATURE Fabric™.

At its core, ARMATURE Fabric is a workflow management platform that allows you to build your own processes and then use them to collect and manage data, so you can collaborate effectively with suppliers. We make it easy for you to create, collect, manage, analyze, and collaborate—all from within our holistic quality management platform.

Our supplier quality management software comes equipped with standout features that are designed to facilitate communication between manufacturers and suppliers. Here are 3 features we know you’ll love:

Self-Service Portals Give Suppliers a Seat at the Table

Manufacturers can grant system access to their suppliers, showing only the information they need, through self-service portals—allowing suppliers to participate in workflows, tasks, and remediation activities within the system. As a manufacturer, you retain complete control over what information each supplier is able to see and act on, and you can configure processes and milestones to reflect your preferred way of managing quality (no coding required!). ARMATURE Fabric is intuitive and easy to use, so even suppliers who are software-averse can get the hang of it quickly.

The screenshot below shows the supplier view of a process, complete with milestone markers and percentage completion.

Sample Supplier Portal View
Supplier Portal View

Self-Assessments Keep Your Suppliers in Top Shape

Many of the quality leaders we talk to feel like they’re stretched too thin. They have a staff of 10 or 15 quality professionals who are tasked with managing hundreds of suppliers. Given these numbers, they simply can’t get in front of every single supplier each year, so they devise three-year audit cycles and hope for the best in between.

But what if you could automate annual assessments? With ARMATURE Fabric, you can. Our supplier quality management software allows you to set up annual self-assessments. You can build one or many assessments in the system and send them to your suppliers to complete, and our supplier quality management system will follow up with them to make sure they get it done. Everything is automated, so you can set it and forget it until the results come in. By requiring your suppliers to conduct self-assessments on a regular basis, you will be gathering critical quality data that helps you understand supplier performance over time, and you will also be able to spot potential issues and resolve them before they lead to quality failures. It’s a way to insist on excellence in your supply chain and make your quality operations proactive rather than reactive.

The screenshot below shows a self-assessment that a manufacturer has created for its suppliers.

Sample Supplier Self-Assessment
Sample Supplier Self-Assessment

Manage Engineering Change Orders from ARMATURE Fabric

Why invest in a point solution that only handles engineering change orders when you can manage those through your supplier quality management software? We understand that every part that you get from a supplier contributes to your overall quality and risk profile, so we folded change order functionality into our quality management platform.

When you decide to update your product for any reason and you need your supplier(s) to change a part, you can issue an engineering change request (ECR) directly from ARMATURE Fabric. When your supplier comes back to you with an engineering change order (ECO) that specs out the change, you can then approve or deny the ECO and issue an engineering change notice (ECN) to finalize and memorialize the change. It’s a simple workflow that you build in our system, and you’ll be able to capture all of the back-and-forth communication while streamlining the process for everyone involved.

The screenshot below shows a sample ECO in ARMATURE Fabric.

Sample Engineering Change Order
Sample Engineering Change Order

A System that Puts Quality Center Stage

The beauty of ARMATURE Fabric and its suite of web-based supplier quality management tools is that it facilitates collaboration and communication between manufacturers and suppliers. It also inserts quality into critical processes—such as engineering change orders—that are too often conducted in separate siloed systems. ARMATURE Fabric puts quality at the heart of every process and allows you to create your own workflows and data collection instruments, with no coding required. It’s easy. It’s different. And we think you’ll love it.

To learn more, contact us to schedule a consultation. We’ll chat more about your quality operations and show you how ARMATURE Fabric can help your organization thrive.