The purpose of each inspection type is to ship factory finished goods before detecting any product defects or other issues. Quality control inspection provides various insights into your product when it is performed at various points in production.
The biggest value in early detection of problems is that it becomes difficult or expensive to be able to address them with your supplier. Importers typically conduct quality inspections at various stages of production or shipping, including raw materials.
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- Checking raw materials or components before production.
- Inspecting semi-finished products and finished products during production.
- Inspecting finished products (with or without packaging) after production Monitoring the loading of shipping containers.
Incoming quality control (IQC): Inspection of the parts and materials chosen for the product, a process called incoming quality control (IQC), is an important first step in identifying these quality problems. Importers usually leave their supplier's own staff to the IQC to perform, rather than going to the factory themselves or hiring a third-party QC inspector for this purpose.
First article inspection (FAI): For some importers, the next prudent step in identifying product defects after IQC is investigating some previously mass-produced units. During the first article inspection (FAI), an inspector will check one or a few of the first units of an order from the production line, or one unit from the first production lot.