Vibtec GmbH is an independent, medium-sized company offering development services and product qualifications in the field of environmental simulation. Our clients mainly come from the areas of the automotive industry, railway, aerospace, microelectronics, drive and control technology as well as mechanical engineering. Since its establishment in 1995, as well as the first accreditation in 2003 according to DIN EN ISO/IEC 17025: 2005 as environmental test laboratory, we have specialized in the core topics of "vibration technology" and "temperature/climate". Naturally, special vibro-acoustic and optical measurement techniques are also part of the portfolio today. Our 25 employees perform accredited standard, functional and life tests as well as complete trials on our electrodynamic and hydraulic vibration test systems and temperature and climatic chambers.
The lab management was performed for over 20 years as a classical, project-based collection of documentation and reports. In 2018, the increasing demands on efficiency as well as on an integrated management required a change to a modern, electronic lab management system. The areas such as customer management, proposal preparation, calculation, inspection plan preparation, measuring station and calibration management, quality management, standards management and filing as well as the entire accounting should be completely mapped.
We also looked for a solution allowing an integrated inclusion of the QM documents into the lab management system, since at the same time it was necessary to change the accreditation standard DIN EN ISO/IEC 17025 to the new edition 2017.
As a starting point, a "TestLab Plus 025" starter package was introduced. With the support of dacore Datenbanksysteme AG, the internal adaptations to the processes and designations were performed without any problems on our premises. Additionally, the integrated quality management system of dacore Datenbanksysteme AG was adapted, allowing the desired purely electronic image of the QM manual including the contents of ISO/IEC 17025:2017 with electronic reference to the chapters in the QM manual.
Advantages and Outlook
The chapters of the manual have been easily and electronically created and released at chapter level. Training records, including confirmations of internal staff training courses, have been incorporated into the pertinent chapters. The QM manual and the contents of the basic standard have been directly linked. The electronic linking has allowed easy traceability, high transparency and control on implementation. Another advantage has been the possibility to incorporate all documents directly and in a timely manner in the laboratory management, to change them and thus keeping the QM system up-to-date. In addition, the lab-operational application elements of the "TestLab Plus 025", that we call VMS, have become directly linkable with the level of the quality management.
Detours through extensive descriptions have been avoided by using direct links between quality documents and the structure display, individual objects, evaluations or key figures. With the help of the new system, the accreditation based on ISO/IEC 17025: 2017 was successfully completed in 2018. By networking all laboratory work areas, the system offers a high level of consistency of the information flow. The networking of the internal data allows insightful evaluations and findings. The implementation of individual customer requirements and the integration of previously unused data were made possible. The interconnection of the operational laboratory processes with those of quality management also allows an efficient, continuous self-optimization of the entire system. The characteristic features of an "Industry 4.0" will be implemented at Vibtec GmbH in the future, taking into account the new software solutions.
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