Every day, we are surrounded by a diversity of manufactured goods. Laptops and headphones. Cars and roadways. Kitchen appliances, medical devices, and entertainment systems. We can thank all the dedicated manufacturing workers out there who bring these products to life. And, of course, the quality assurance specialists who ensure these products meet the highest standards – so that we can use them safely and effectively each day.
If you are seeking an important role in the manufacturing industry, and you have a keen eye for detail and top-quality goods, a career in quality management may be right for you. This field ensures that only acceptable, functional, and quality products are distributed to businesses and consumers. Quality Assurance (QA) Managers are the ones who make this happen.
What is a Quality Assurance Manager?
A Quality Assurance Manager helps develop and safeguard quality standards in a production company. Before any product reaches consumers, the Quality Assurance Manager – along with their team of specialists – will assess the item in depth and confirm it meets all company requirements, compliance standards, and that it has no defects. In essence, Quality Assurance Managers ensure products are safe to use, operate properly, are uniform, and follow all specifications.
All products must go through a quality assurance process – electronics, vehicles, toys, and food products are just some of the many examples. This means, if you pursue a career in quality management, you will have many options for work.
A career as a Quality Assurance Manager may sound simple, but there is much more that is involved beyond the day-to-day QA. Quality Assurance Managers are also responsible for managing staff, overseeing production processes, analyzing data, and developing strategies or policies for higher quality. Let’s dive into the responsibilities of a Quality Assurance Manager.
Duties of a Quality Assurance Manager
Quality Assurance Managers maintain a leadership position, meaning they head a team of quality control inspectors and specialists. On a daily basis, you can find QA managers:
- Testing and sampling products, ensuring they meet set standards and specifications
- Developing quality control policies and standards for the company to follow
- Training staff members on the quality control processes and policies
- Overseeing quality control processes, and a team of QA specialists
- Conducting in-house audits of product inventory and documentation
- Confirming all products are properly labeled before output
- Investigating customer complaints
- Ensuring safety procedures and processes
- Assessing operational data and identifying quality problems
- Establishing strategies to improve efficiency and profitability in the organization, as well as put out higher quality goods
In addition to the above responsibilities, Quality Assurance Managers must communicate with the larger company about their observations and findings. If a product has a defect, or does not meet the intended measurements for example, this knowledge will need to be passed to the production team. On a daily basis, Quality Assurance Managers are in touch with customer satisfaction, product performance, production, and engineering departments.
What Does it Take to Become a Quality Assurance Manager?
A Quality Manager has a very important role within a manufacturing company. They truly help products and companies succeed and stay afloat. When a product lacks quality, the customers are not happy and the business can suffer. It is up to the Quality Assurance Manager to ensure that standards are met, and that quality is always top-of-the-list. This requires a certain set of skills.
Quality Assurance Managers should have:
- An eye for detail, to catch defects.
- Experience with quality management systems (QMS).
- Leadership skills, to manage cross-functional projects and teams.
- Math skills – data reporting, measuring, calibrating, and calculating specifications are just some of the many skills you should possess.
- Critical thinking skills, to help work through customer problems and production issues, as well as develop strategies for improving product quality.
- Physical strength and stamina, as they will be on their feet much of the day.
- Ability to read blueprints, technical documents, and manuals.
- A desire to achieve the best, and ensure top-quality products.
Of course, many of the skills listed above cannot come without a technical manufacturing education. It is for this reason that most Quality Assurance Managers today are expected to have an associate degree, combined with hands-on experience, or a bachelor’s degree in the field.
If you are looking to become a Quality Assurance Manager, you can do so through Goodwin University’s manufacturing and machining school. Our Bachelor’s in Manufacturing Management can prepare you with the technical and leadership skills you need to succeed as a QA manager right after graduation. You may also pursue our associate degree in Quality Management Systems, which will prepare you for a variety of roles in quality control:
- Supplier Quality Assurance Supervisor
- Quality Supervisor
- Manufacturing Quality Inspector
- Quality Auditor
Manufacturing employers today desire top quality candidates. If you are interested in launching a successful quality management career, start here at Goodwin. Call 800-889-3282 to learn about our programs, or visit us online to request more information.
Goodwin University is a nonprofit institution of higher education and is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE), formerly known as the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC). Goodwin University was founded in 1999, with the goal of serving a diverse student population with career-focused degree programs that lead to strong employment outcomes.