SMMT conference to address regulatory and technological challenges in auto manufacturing

The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) has introduced a new two-day conference aimed at improving quality across the automotive supply chain. The inaugural Automotive Quality Management Systems (AQMS) Conference is the first event of its kind in Britain, taking place at the NEC, Birmingham, on 20 and 21 November 2018.

Engineers from some of the world’s biggest car makers and key suppliers from across the UK will meet to discuss new standards, regulations and issues that will help to enhance modern car manufacturing. These include the new IATF 16949 certification, product safety and technological challenges while the impact of Brexit on quality standards will also be high on the agenda.

IATF 16949 will be of particular relevance, as the deadline to comply with it passes in September this year. The internationally recognised standard promotes continual improvement, places an emphasis on defect prevention and aims to reduce variation and waste in the automotive supply chain. Ultimately IATF 16949 certification is important as it can help businesses identify potential efficiency gains and cost savings.

Conference speakers already confirmed comprise senior executives from organisations across the automotive industry and beyond, including: Jaguar Land Rover and Bentley, the International Automotive Task Force (IATF), International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA). With seminars from global brands, delegates will gain a wide-ranging perspective on how to maintain their international competitiveness.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said, “Improving competitiveness in the UK automotive sector is absolutely critical, and fundamental to this is ensuring the highest quality right across the industry. While ‘made in Britain’ has global recognition as a standard for high quality, we can’t rest on our laurels. Manufacturers and suppliers face a number of challenges in this area, from tackling new certifications to the impact of Brexit, and the SMMT AQMS conference will provide a platform for the sector to discuss how to succeed in future.”

The conference is open to quality professionals from OEMs and supply chain companies. In particular, those in the functions of quality management, supervision and engineering, supplier quality, product design and development. Managing directors of small and medium-sized companies are also encouraged to attend.

Tickets to attend the event are priced at £675, which includes both conference days, a drinks reception and dinner on the evening of the 20th. The deadline for registration is Monday 5 November 2018.

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