By Caitlin Hines on February 28, 2018
Their products go from the depths of the ocean to far off outer space–the reach of VPT, in so many ways, expansive. With offices on both the east and west coast, and a joint venture partnership overseas, VPT is a global provider of power conversion solutions. Their converters can easily fit in the palm of your hand, yet they’re keeping airplanes and satellites aloft.
VPT designs and manufactures high-reliability DC-DC converters and EMI filters. These small components allow intricate systems to communicate and function together, despite difference in voltage requirements. Because the applications require high reliability, quality is paramount.
Converters and filters developed by VPT are used in high-consequence machinery: tanks, Boeing aircrafts, GPS satellites, etc. If two systems cannot communicate, catastrophe will follow. VPT serves industries where failure is simply not an option.
In order for the research and development lab in Blacksburg, Virginia to procure the necessary components, seamless communication and a high level of traceability is required. With so many pieces and parts to organize–from minute microchips to widespread facilities–having Qualtrax allows VPT to successfully manage while maximizing on efficiencies. Shane Hager, the Quality Systems Manager for VPT, weighed in on Qualtrax’s importance in their company. “The more efficient and organized I can be, using tools like Qualtrax,” Shane said, “the better my days go.”
Traceability is significant for VPT and is also applicable to manufacturers and customers collectively. It is imperative that components used to create final products are well-documented. “Part number assignments and updates are routed via a workflow and then managed by document control,” Shane explained. “This is the first step to generating traceability.” Because each convertor or filter contains so many components, having controlled systems for purchasing, identification, and traceability is critical to VPT’s success.
Qualtrax also lessens the risk of user error with instant access to manufacturing documents. “We have Qualtrax at each manufacturing and screening workstation. Operators can view any manufacturing document required instantly,” Shane explained. “The most up-to-date version is always available in the system; obsolete versions are deleted once a new version is published.” Having real-time access to the current versions of product plans lessen the margin for error while encouraging visibility and accountability.
Within the Blacksburg Headquarters and R&D Labs, there are multiple moving parts Qualtrax helps organize. Qualtrax Workflows improve Personnel Training, audits, CAPA (Corrective Action / Preventive Action) improvements, and document control, to name only a few of its multiple uses. Required signatures from top management officials means all component parts of VPT are kept in the loop without overwhelming anyone with paperwork. “The last thing you want to do is put a stack of papers on the CEO’s desk and ask for signatures,” Shane said.
Most manufacturers deal with constant juggling of multiple parts, people, and facilities. More moving parts means more stress for compliance-based industries. To add efficiencies and reduce error within manufacturing means a more efficiently run operation, demonstrating the ROI of our product.
We hope for all our customers to spend as much time in their genius zones of creation and development, able to focus on changing the world while we focus on what we love: building great software and services to take them beyond compliance.