Traceability is Key to EMS Provider Growth
Electronics manufacturing services (EMS) customers have always demanded high-quality work and scheduling flexibility from their providers. Today, many of these customers also require complete product traceability—from the manufacturing floor to where it’s shipped.
Key Electronics Inc. has been a successful EMS provider to several industries since 1996.
Many of its customers are major players in aerospace, defense, medical devices, industrial controls, electronic instrumentation, appliances, transportation and consumer products. The company operates a 100,000-square-foot factory in Jeffersonville, IN, that is ISO 9001:2008 and ISO 13485:2003 certified.
Key Electronics also offers a wide range of services beyond electronics manufacturing. These include design for manufacturing, supply chain management, assembly integration, and testing and managing the repair of damaged products returned by customers.
In early 2013, several aerospace, transportation, defense and medical customers told Key Electronics about their need for product traceability. Shortly thereafter, the company equipped two of its PCB pick-and-place machines with Cogiscan Inc.’s Track, Trace and Control (TTC) traceability software.
Both machines are made by JUKI Automation Systems and feature an RFID-based feeder system. Besides communicating with the machine wirelessly, the feeder system quickens machine setup, ensures accurate PCB assembly and increases productivity.
The traceability software requires each PCB to have a bar code containing the board’s serial number. A bar code scanner attached to the machine’s head reads the codes. Dave Meece, executive vice president for strategic initiatives at Key Electronics, says TTC tracks every PCB by serial number and records the lot number of all parts placed on every board.
With TTC, managers can quickly determine a part’s assembly route, its date and time of assembly, component part numbers, the production line it was assembled on and equipment used. The software also provides real-time tracking of factorywide inventory, including the exact location, quantity and status of all materials.
Equally important, Key Electronics integrates TTC with the company’s manufacturing execution system software to simplify data entry transactions and synchronize data.
For more information on traceability software, call 877-534-2644 or visit www.cogiscan.com.