NAVAIR

Prototyping and Manufacturing Division achieves quality management certification

Rear Adm. Shane Gahagan, NAWCAD commander and NAVAIR assistant commander for Research and Engineering, and NAVAIR SE and ALRE Department leadership join the NAWCAD Lakehurst Prototyping and Manufacturing Division for a group photo Nov. 2 in celebration of PMD’s ISO 9001 Certification. (U.S. Navy Photo)

Rear Adm. Shane Gahagan, NAWCAD commander and NAVAIR assistant commander for Research and Engineering, and NAVAIR SE and ALRE Department leadership join the NAWCAD Lakehurst Prototyping and Manufacturing Division for a group photo Nov. 2 in celebration of PMD’s ISO 9001 Certification. (U.S. Navy Photo)

Nov 20, 2017

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The NAWCAD Lakehurst Prototyping and Manufacturing Division, the center of excellence for the overhaul, repair and rapid prototyping of Aircraft Launch and Recovery Equipment (ALRE) and Support Equipment (SE), officially received ISO 9001 Certification Aug. 3. (U.S. Navy Photo)

The NAWCAD Lakehurst Prototyping and Manufacturing Division, the center of excellence for the overhaul, repair and rapid prototyping of Aircraft Launc ...

Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J. – Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division (NAWCAD) Lakehurst was recently certified for its implementation of a structured quality management system in line with the highest standards of the industrial environment.

The NAWCAD Lakehurst Prototyping and Manufacturing Division (PMD) officially received ISO 9001 Certification by the Government and Military Certification Systems, Inc. Aug. 3.

PMD is the center of excellence for the overhaul, repair and rapid prototyping of Aircraft Launch and Recovery Equipment (ALRE) and Support Equipment (SE). It serves as a “safety net” for the ALRE/SE supply system, producing parts that industry cannot, and as the inspection agent for all critical safety items for ALRE.

“This certification is a major milestone in maintaining the already high standards of NAWCAD's Prototyping and Manufacturing Division and ensuring rapid, quality service to the fleet,” said Kathleen P. Donnelly, director of the Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) SE and ALRE Department. “The credit goes to the hard work of many personnel within PMD, and they should be extremely proud of this significant achievement.”

“Our intent, especially in an industrial type environment is to become more efficient and more productive, but more importantly, to provide the fleet with a quality product,” said Jeff Lewis, head of NAWCAD Lakehurst PMD.

The ISO 9001 Certification standardizes the structure and process of industrial operations to include the organization and requirements for documents and records, management’s responsibilities, resource management, planning procedures, and measurement and analysis.

“It’s a specification that defines the requirements that well-run companies follow to ensure that they deliver a quality product; it covers everything,” said Fred Kolich, PMD ISO Lead Quality Assurance engineer.

In line with the certification, PMD created several Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) to capture knowledge of senior employees and help new employees transition into the PMD team, which contains more than 275 employees and works upward of 340 projects at a time, said Lewis.

The SOPs improve efficiency and ensure everyone is “talking the same language,” said Lewis.

“To manage that type of workload and that type of environment, we need to inject a discipline in processes so that it’s institutionalized to the point where everybody is managing the expectations against our quality management system,” said Lewis.

PMD also started a Corrective Action Review Board to look at systemic issues and how to improve them.

“It’s a constant process,” said John Aho, PMD Manufacturing and Fleet Support Branch head. “That’s when we start peeling back the onion, so to speak, and see where and why the issues are occurring.”

This also allows PMD to be proactive in identifying potential issues before they occur.

“We’re trying to transform ourselves from an organization that finds a problem and fixes it, to an organization that can anticipate a problem and stop it from happening,” said Kolich.

While achieving the ISO certification is a milestone, it also allows room for PMD to adapt as requirements or technology changes.

“It’s not rigid to the point where it’s a ‘do all be all.’ It’s a continuous process improvement environment, where everyone from the entry-level guy on the shop floor to the lead manager has the opportunity to provide input into changing the process or making improvements to the process,” said Lewis.

“It puts us in the role of a continuous process of improvement type environment where it’s all based on getting a quality product to the fleet,” he said.

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The NAWCAD Lakehurst Prototyping and Manufacturing Division contains more than 275 employees and works upward of 340 projects at a time. (U.S. Navy Photo)

The NAWCAD Lakehurst Prototyping and Manufacturing Division contains more than 275 employees and works upward of 340 projects at a time. (U.S. Navy Ph ...

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