A Process control plan, also known as Control Plan, is a document that describes the process steps, quality control items, responding control methods, and reaction plans. It is a plan that takes hold of production/service processes in order to ensure the product, service, and process requirements are met.
Why should you use a Control Plan?
Because it provides structural information for process control, Control Plan is widely used. It assists the process owner:
- It is easy to monitor the performance of a process. Without a Control Plan, it might be difficult to identify what must be controlled and how.
- It is easy to identify influenced characteristics in product/process modifications: You can determine which characteristics are affected and what control methods they use.
Control Plan input
The Control Plan must be created using all available information in order to effectively control and improve the process. These information sources include, but are not limited to:
- Process Flow Diagram (Includes process No. Process Name/Description
- DFMEA/PFMEA: These are used to identify the control item for each process step. Product and process characteristics.
- A special Characteristics Matrix is used to identify the most critical characteristics of the Process.
When should a Control Plan be created?
Creation: The team should create a Control Plan as soon as the process design has begun. This plan must be completed before the trial production.
Revision: If the process of producing or using a product changes during its life cycle, the information in the input material changes as well. The Control Plan should be updated regularly. The Control Plan should be updated regularly by the team to reflect current methods of control and the measurement system. This is why it is called a living document.
Types of Control Plans
The process maturity level in the product’s lifecycle is what typically defines the type of control plan. The team can determine the type of Control plan that is best for them. This will help define the output scope.
- Prototype Control Plan: It outlines the system that must be followed and completed when manufacturing prototypes are being manufactured.
- Pre-launch Control Plan: It details the control and process that must be completed before mass production (serial production), is launched.
- Production Control Plan: This Plan is about the control and process that must be followed during mass production.