15 Manufacturing Terms and Definitions You Need to Know

In the manufacturing world, techniques have changed significantly over the years.

After years of working with a variety of industries, we’ve learned the terms that are used most commonly in each and turned them into a list.

Use it to build your vocabulary – and understanding – of manufacturing terms.

Bonus: Since manufacturing is a global business, learning these concepts will be applicable anywhere.

Here are some manufacturing terms and definitions that you need to know.

1. Agile manufacturing

Tools, techniques, and initiatives that help an organization respond rapidly to their customers, the market and the latest advances in the industry.

2. Approved Vendor List (AVL)

A list of all the suppliers from which materials are purchased.

3. Automation

Control systems that operate a process or system with minimal or reduced human interaction.

4. Bill of Materials (BOM)

A list of parts or items that make up a product assembly. The BOM may also include sub-assemblies, which are smaller parts of the larger product.

For example, a lawn mower is made up of a number of different systems, such as the handle assembly, the blade assembly, the motor, etc.

5. Computer-Aided Design (CAD)

A wide range of computer-based tools that aid engineers, architects and other design professionals in their design activities.

6. Corrective Action Request (CAR)

A change request that documents a crucial problem with a product.

7. Change Management

The process of creating, reviewing and getting approval for change requests, orders and notifications.

8. Change Request

Explains a problem and suggests a solution to remedy the problem. There are multiple types of change requests, including:

  • Document Change Request (DCR).
  • Engineering Change Request (ECR).
  • Field Failure Request (FFR).
  • Manufacturing Change Request (MCR).
  • Supplier Corrective Action Request (SCAR).

9. Document Change Request (DCR)

A change request that explains a problem with a document and offers a solution to fix it. DCR is also used to describe an issue with a specification or with a standard operating procedure.

10. Document Control

Managing product documentation, including maintaining and distributing product files related to revisions.

11. Engineering Bill of Materials (EBOM)

Bill of Materials that’s organized according to CAD engineers’ processes and preferences.

EBOM represents only the product that’s being created, not the packaging or the manufacturing materials used.

12. Engineering Change Order (ECO)

The documentation that describes a suggested change to a design.

It lists the parts or products that would be affected and is signed off on by the people/person who would be responsible for performing the change.

13. Engineering Change Request (ECR)

This type of change request details proposed improvements or issues with components or assemblies.

Often, an ECR will come before an ECO.

14. Field Failure Request (FFR)

This change request describes a problem with a product that has been observed in the field.

15. Good Manufacturing Process (GMP)

This set of guidelines explains how to manage every aspect of production and testing that ensures the quality of a product.

GMPs cover the manufacture and testing of:

  • Active pharmaceutical ingredients.
  • Diagnostics.
  • Foods.
  • Pharmaceutical products.
  • Medical devices.

Using manufacturing terms and definitions to boost authority

Familiarity with these phrases and what they mean positions you as a go-to source for your potential customers and current clients.

The people who work with you want to feel confident that you’re qualified to help them meet their goals.

Author: Jeffrey Lippincott

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