Later this year, the Independent Distributors of Electronics Association (IDEA) plans to formally introduce IDEA-QMS-9090. This new standard is the first of its kind, establishing a quality management system specifically for independent distributors. Converge’s goal is to be among the first independent distributors audited and certified to IDEA-QMS-9090.
Back in 2011, Converge Quality Manager Dwight Gerardi blogged about how IDEA has changed the electronic components industry. When the association was formed in 2003, it put together the first reference manual of industry best practices and recommendations for inspecting and testing electronic components in the independent market. Prior to that, it was up to each independent distributor to ensure parts met customer requirements based on its current knowledge and experiences. Thus, IDEA helped independents capitalize on a universal truth: collectively we are smarter and stronger.
Converge has been an IDEA member for years, which our customers value. They know that independent distributors that are accepted into IDEA membership have met a long list of requirements, including ISO 9001 and ANSI/ESD S20.20 certification. ISO 9001 is the internationally recognized generic standard for the quality management of business operations. ESD certification shows that a company has an electrostatic discharge control system in place.
IDEA-QMS-9090 is not meant to replace these valuable certifications but rather to build upon them. Companies that want to attain 9090 certification must already be certified to ISO 9001 or equivalent. The new certification adds intensive requirements that will help independent distributors align to industry best practices in areas such as component inspection procedures and vendor management. As the standard states, "The objective of this commercial Standard is to establish specific requirements and practices Independent Distributors of electronic components can use to help ensure that they satisfy their customers’ requirements.” Conversely, manufacturer customers of the independent market will be able to more easily identify distributors that meet their exacting quality standards by looking for the 9090 certification. It’s an improvement on both sides of the equation.