QUALITY is a perceptual, conditional and subjective attribute, says Mr. Satish Bhat.

Mr.Satish Bhat(Managing Director,Ador Welding Ltd) speaks in great detail about QUALITY.An attribute which is embedded in the ethos of Ador Welding Ltd in an interview in Engineering Review October Issue.

 Q. What’s your definition for Quality?

Quality is a perceptual, conditional and somewhat subjective attribute and may be understood differently by different people. Consumer focuses on the specifications as quality of a product / service or how it compares to competitors in the marketplace. Support personnel may measure quality in terms of how much a product is reliable, maintainable, or sustainable.AWL is a total solution provider in welding industry – welding and cutting equipments, consumables for all welding processes and materials, PPEs for safety, automation solutions and concept to installation project delivery – all these form part of AWL.Hence, quality in AWL has a much broader definition and understanding compared to others in this industry. As far as AWL is concerned, quality of a product means its ability to meet the requirements and expectations in service and its suitability for its intended purpose at lowest logical operating cost. The focus is on what the customer gets out from our product and is willing to pay for. We still follow classic definition of quality i.e.“Fitness for Use”.

Q. How do you infuse Quality in your production process?

We have an independent Quality Management Organisation.
Four pillars of our quality foundation are:
1)Our commitment to quality The clear vision of our management and a solid policy are the foundation for a strong quality culture.
2)Managing and monitoring quality We have put into place clear processes, responsibilities and monitoring to ensure both quality and efficiency.
3) Engaging with our customers Delivering high quality services requires listening to and understanding users’ needs.
4) Strong HR policies for focus on Quality. Induction of employees with aptitude for quality while hiring, focus on continuous training for enhancing quality at organization and of products & services offered.
Five basic aspects govern our quality culture viz:
a. Defining quality from the perspective of the customer from design to delivery.
b. Working as a team.
c. Organizational level understanding of the cost of quality.
d. Strong process discipline.
e. Ensure problems are solved completely.
Our approach is to achieve quality by organizing every process to get the product ‘right first time’. There is more emphasis on ‘self-checking’, rather than checking by inspectors.

Q)What are the self-imposed Quality Assurance & Reliability Checks you have for your end products?

1) Understanding exactly the customer’s requirements.
2) Our testing facilities are comparable to the best in the world.
3) Instruments like XRF, ICP etc ensure the right quality of raw materials are used.
4) Manufacturing processes are of the latest technology with the state-of-the-art equipment that guaranties quality consistency.
5) Our extensive finished product testing conforms that the product manufactured meets the customer’s specifications.
6)Extensive and repeated training at all levels ensures people are updated continuously on customer expectations and the latest quality standards and requirements.

Q. How would you describe your adherence to Quality Standards & Systems?

 All the manufacturing facilities are accredited for ISO Quality, EMS and OHSAS system. All operations are system based and are subjected to continuous internal audits. The audit findings are reviewed every time at the highest level. Our thrust on LEAN manufacturing, Innovation and continuous learning and upkeep approach coupled with the above systems ensures continuous improvement in efficiency and quality standards.

Q.Do you also have third party inspection for approval of your products for specific applications?

 Yes.For many applications like offshore and nuclear applications, most of the times, we have either third party inspection or the customer himself witnesses the tests and approves the product / batches. Other than this, our consumable products have more than 200 approvals from National bodies like BIS, IBR, RDSO, NPCIL etc. and International agencies like ABS, LRS, BV, DNV etc. Many products of consumables as well as equipments have CE marking. All these approvals come after not only product testing but also process audit and hence our systems are under continuous audit by various agencies. This keeps our quality system healthy and updated. Product quality also gets evaluated throughout the year by various agencies. This ensures that the customer gets what he needs consistently.

 Q. What’s the role of Quality in maintaining and enhancing your brand image?
Brands have been considered as the second most important assets for a firm after customers. Perceived quality has a significant positive effect on brand image. It also has a significant positive effect on brand loyalty. ADOR is a brand which customer looks up to for technology and quality. We are the technology leaders in our segment in India. We introduced MIG / SAW welding consumables to India and improved the productivity and profitability of Indian fabricators. We are the first to introduce Inventor-based welding equipment that were totally developed in India. Our footprints are there in each and every sector of industry starting from power, steel, infrastructure, fertiliser, mining, Railways, refineries etc. for over 6 decades. We had worked with steel producers to get steels of specific quality for various applications. We have been continuously associated with our Government agencies on import substitution of many strategically important projects. We are the first in producing and offering “CE Marked” products manufactured in India . Today, more than ever,customer orientation is the most important aspect that is gaining increasing importance.Customers look up-to us for technology and quality and we strive to meet and exceed their expectations through a system based approach.

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