Electronic Components Manufacturer Certifications – Why They Matter
When companies look for electronic connectors and harness assemblies suppliers and manufacturers, one of the most common pitfalls they face is a failure to check and research each potential partners certifications and credentials. While to many, a certification may seem like an ambiguous string of letters, or a vague symbol placed on a website to build trust, a valid certification proves that the company adheres to a set of regulations based on safety, quality, or service. Although regulatory agencies often feel like an unnecessary expenditure of taxpayer dollars, they exist to protect people in your particular situation. When looking for the perfect custom cable assemblies manufacturer, here are some particular types of certifications to look for.
ISO or International Standards Organization
A business that is ISO registered has in place specific systems to ensure the quality of their products and services. Typically this involves developing processes, as well as education and training programs so the workforce knows how to spot inefficiencies or lapses in product quality while still in the production line. As the name implies, ISO outlines a set of standards that every manufacturer must abide by, including precise technical specifications for processes and products. These standards are generally meant to protect the safety and best interests of the end user of the product.
Within the custom cable assemblies industry, there is a leading regulatory and compliance organization known as the WHMA or Wiring Harness Manufacturer’s Association. At the very least, when looking to find a supplier for this type of item, look for the IPC A-620 Standards certification. Holders of this certificate must first undergo hands-on training for technicians to become proficient in the methods of cable and wire harness manufacture. This certificate guarantees that the technician building your custom products have had industry-leading training and can produce a top-quality product.
UL and CSA Certifications
The Underwriters Laboratories (UL) and the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) both provide product testing and certification services for electrical, mechanical, plumbing, gas, and many other types of manufactured products. In general, this certifications indicates that the processes, products, or services being produced have been tested according to a specific set of standards for product quality and end consumer safety. Depending on the products you sell, having the UL and CSA labels on your products give your consumers a vote of confidence that the product is safe and of high quality.
Environmental and Restricted Substances
In addition to safety and product quality standards, you may be interested in partners that have more stringent environmental substance certifications or compliance information. This can be vitally important for companies whose customers are particularly brand loyal, and need to portray the most environmentally-sustainable, socially-responsible image possible.
Remember that most certifications require periodic up-training, audits, and surprise inspections in order to remain certified. If your custom cable assemblies contractors can display and verify their certifications, you can typically rest assured that they adhere to rigorous standards for safety and product quality. Be sure to ask for and follow up on certification numbers and expiration dates, so you can make sure that the certifications are still valid.