The quality control group at Fujifilm’s manufacturing site in New Castle, USA, is on a mission to ensure delivery of the highest quality industrial inkjet inks. Led by manager Nathan Taylor, they rise to every challenge and customer request, delivering results right first time.
“We’re committed to quality. We assure that through comprehensive quality control procedures, precision calibration of our equipment, and our dedication to customer service.” Nathan Taylor, Quality Control Manager
Supported by excellent customer service, our mission is to produce the highest-quality industrial inkjet inks. This is a key goal for us and our customers. When we support manufacturing, it’s of the utmost importance for quality control.
Training our colleagues comprehensively, vetting and controlling procedures, and verifying equipment with calibration are critical to achieving high-quality inkjet inks. We balance efficiency with attention to detail and precision to ensure we’re always delivering results right the first time.
Comprehensive ink testing
The USA site manufactures batches of aqueous inkjet inks and pigment dispersions. After the manufacturing process, we receive samples representing the batch as a complete product. We do the final analysis, listing the results on our Customer Certificate of Analysis.
As well as ensuring results are correct, we complete many raw material verifications – testing materials used in manufacturing the final product. We also support stability programs at the site, testing products over time to ensure the shelf-life is correct, and, in some cases, being able to verify extension of shelf-life for customers.
We create a testing plan and criteria every time we make a product. Customers may require additional testing or an investigation into something or are scaling up their business and need extra capacity. We understand what’s required from a testing profile point of view. When there are additional requests, we rise to the challenge to ensure the customer is always satisfied.
Working with customers for first-time quality
The cornerstone of quality control is working with the customer’s technical group to ensure they have all the necessary equipment and are technically aligned. We also have a fully capable laboratory at our disposal for analyzing the physical parameters of the ink, trace metal and ion analysis, particle sizing, and counting. We have full capabilities to support our customers and we’re always willing to add new capabilities as required.
Our lab is impressive, from the amount of equipment, to its cleanliness and organization. We meet customers here regularly and, through new product introductions, we have technical discussions and meetings. I really enjoy that about my position – getting to interface with customers and technical experts.
There are so many aspects to our quality system that to on-board a new customer, a quality control manager needs communication, collaboration, and visibility to ensure we’re fulfilling our end of the deal to ensure success. Open communication and collaboration between groups is important to us.
Expertise and attention to detail drive quality
I’m proud of our people. Our high-quality, attention-driven technicians go through a robust training regimen to join our quality control group. We have upwards of 100 standard operating procedures that we could be called upon to run on any given day. They must learn how to run these methods properly and understand our control systems to ensure accurate results.
Before they’re even allowed to analyze a customer sample, we build technicians up through screening and interaction with our chemists. They’ll take on additional projects that broaden their horizon and get involved in other things like ISO 9001 training. As certified internal auditors, they will audit other groups, processes, or procedures, and perform investigations or studies for or with a customer.
Most importantly, we are proud to take care of our customers and respond to their concerns or requests. We always find the time, even if the amount of bandwidth we might have to throw at an issue varies daily. We find a way and rise to meet the challenge.