Moving into 2023, we’re excited to announce a new addition to the AIAG Quality Steering Committee (QSC) – Freudenberg’s Director of Corporate Quality, Kim Stewart.
In her current role at Freudenberg, Kim’s responsibilities include organizing and managing internal and external audits, training internal auditors to ISO 9001:2015 and IATF 16949:2016, reviewing global procedures, creating new standards, and assisting sites with problem solving. She is also a Six Sigma Black Belt and has trained numerous Six Sigma Green Belts.
As she takes on new challenges and opportunties with the QSC, Kim looks forward to engaging with AIAG and industry peers in a more hands-on capacity, and sharing past experiences to influence future standards and requirements.
Ready to hear more from Kim directly? Find her thoughts below on coming together at AIAG, keeping up with industry news, and more!
Why do you think it’s important to come together at AIAG and participate in events or volunteer for other activities?
I have relied on information from AIAG for many years to support the quality systems at our manufacturing sites. I’ve been auditing against these standards from QS-9000 through present ISO/IATF and against Customer Specific Requirements. I’d like to be involved in the development, explanation, and reasoning behind these standards. I would like to be able to help our sites understand the standards and rules better and be able to implement new requirements effectively. I look forward to benchmarking other organizations to bring fresh ideas to ours and I’d like to share our practices with others.
How do you keep up on what’s new in the automotive/mobility industry?
We have internal communication to keep our plants aware of the latest developments within our organization via portal, magazines, and newsletters. I feel being a part of the AIAG Quality Steering Committee will enable me to be aware of the latest developments and forward that information along within our organization.
What current or emerging trends do you think are most urgent to prepare for?
There are many trends that we need to be prepared for, starting with raw material shortages, depleted human resources, and pandemic protocols which caused months of plant self-governance. At the same time, companies must keep up with the need for better and stronger quality systems. There is also a trend with the need to develop and adapt new technologies in vision systems and automated process control to stay competitive and profitable.
What advice would you offer those just starting out in the automotive/mobility industry?
Being prepared for the demands of supplying the automotive industry takes constant governance. Updating processes, equipment and technology is a must. Quality systems need to be developed as robustly as possible to endure this environment. Using AIAG materials to develop a strong quality system will surely set a solid foundation for a future in mobility.