How to Effectively Perform Visual Inspections
Visual Inspection is one of the easiest and most cost-effective quality assurance methods, and its application varies per industry. Quality assurance inspectors often come up with inconsistent visual inspection results because they either do not completely understand defect specifications or have no references to compare the product with. Here are 5 simple steps to effectively perform visual inspections:
Step #1 Clearly define defect criteria
Key stakeholders such as quality engineers, production personnel, and customers should reach a consensus on defect specifications. Clearly defined defect criteria enable inspectors to accurately make pass/fail decisions for products. Document the defects with example photographs and technical descriptions for daily visual inspections on the shop floor.
Step #2 Standardize inspection performance
Quality managers should regularly assess the performance of the current inspection process to confirm the consistency of inspectors’ pass/fail decisions. Determine how well the inspectors’ decisions match the established defect criteria to standardize visual inspection performance in the organization. Occasionally, inspectors misinterpret the standard when they lack visual representations of the defects during visual inspections.
Step #3 Analyze visual defects
When inspectors’ decisions on the same products contradict across visual inspections, address the issue by analyzing the most significant visual defects. Evaluate the cost of quality by frequency and defect count to identify which defect type has the greatest impact on daily operations. Quality managers should also consider the cost, time to repair, and importance to the customer to create and implement effective action plans.
Step #4 Communicate improvement measures
After solving issues for specific visual defects, reassess the inspection performance to affirm overall agreement between the inspectors’ decisions and set standards. Objectively convey the results to all safety and quality personnel for accountability and ownership of continuous improvement efforts.
Step #5 Use mobile-ready checklists
Inspectors and quality managers should use mobile-ready visual inspection checklists to increase overall throughput of quality products by more than 200%. When inspectors can access the defect criteria anytime, anywhere and capture photo evidence of visual defects, accuracy of pass/fail decisions can be radically improved. When quality managers gain visibility through real-time data and actionable insights, wiser business decisions can be made and operational excellence can be achieved.
Visual Inspection App
iAuditor, the world’s most powerful inspection checklist app, can help easily identify visual defects, standardize visual inspection performance, and increase overall throughput of quality products. With iAuditor, you can:
- Create mobile-ready visual inspection checklists
- Take photos and add annotations in the app
- Automatically generate and share visual inspection reports to members of the organization. Preview sample report.
- Gain real-time data with iAuditor Analytics
- Use for free with small teams. Unlimited reports and storage for premium accounts. Compare pricing plans.
Mobile-ready Visual Inspection Checklists
Incoming Inspection Checklist
An incoming inspection checklist is used by quality assurance personnel to validate the quality of purchased raw materials based on set acceptance criteria. This incoming inspection checklist has been designed to make it easier for quality inspectors to determine inspection results and required actions based on the identification tagging system. Use this mobile-ready checklist to easily perform the following:
- Specify the purchase order number, material description, and quantity
- Capture and store unlimited photos of defects or tagged materials
- Send real-time notifications for scheduled incoming inspections
- Assign actions for accepted, conditionally accepted, or rejected materials
- Complete the incoming inspection with digital signatures
Factory Acceptance Test Checklist
A Factory Acceptance Test (FAT) checklist is used by quality managers to keep a project on track and within its budget by resolving equipment nonconformities prior to shipment. This FAT checklist has been designed to make it easier for quality managers to perform factory acceptance tests in the manufacturing facility and prevent costly project delays. Use iAuditor to efficiently perform the following:
- Document the complete/incomplete FAT protocol
- Capture photo evidence of the entire FAT procedure, including hazard identification, safety inspection and ergonomic assessment
- Specify the pass/fail acceptance criteria upon the actual FAT
- Assign corrective actions for equipment nonconformities
- Validate the factory acceptance test with digital signatures of the FAT personnel
ISO Container Inspection Checklist
An ISO container inspection checklist is used to assess the structural integrity of intermodal containers and guarantee the safe transport of cargo. Use this checklist to follow the 7-point technique in performing ISO container inspections, comply with international regulations, and prevent container fires. Safety officers should take advantage of iAuditor to easily perform the following:
- Capture photo evidence of damages, ISO marks, and CSC plate
- Inspect the doors, undercarriage, floor, front wall, roof, left, and right side of the container
- Send real-time notifications for scheduled ISO container inspections and cargo audits
- Assign actions for misdeclared cargo or inconsistent shipping documents
- Complete the ISO container inspection with digital signatures
Racking Inspection Checklist
A racking inspection checklist aims to identify exactly which components of warehouse racks are damaged using the traffic light system. Instantly assign corrective actions to address health and safety risks with the use of this checklist. The template is designed to easily perform the following:
- Specify the location of the damaged racking
- Measure the damage and risk level based on the traffic light system
- Assign actions with annotated photos and additional notes
- Provide recommendations for future inspections
- Validate the inspection with digital signatures