Quality's survey reveals that these companies know quality makes a difference

Automotive, medical and pharmaceutical, dentistry and agricultural equipment. Advics Manufacturing Ohio Inc., Abbott Laboratories, A-dec, Agco Jackson Operations and ArvinMeritor. Those industries and those companies take the top five places in the Quality Leadership 100. Quality encompasses everything these companies do from the manufacturing process to customer and supplier interaction and investor relations.

The Quality Leadership 100 survey reveals that manufacturing companies know that quality makes a difference through financial benefits and quality practices and resources, no matter how large or how small the manufacturing operation. Many of the companies surveyed reveal that it is their employees who help make a difference.

The percent of employees dedicated to quality responsibilities varies from 0% to 100% with a vast number of companies having all of their employees dedicated to quality responsibilities. On average, respondents provide employees between one to four hours of quality training per month, in a variety of quality disciplines such as Kaizen, lean manufacturing, preventive maintenance, Six Sigma and total quality management.

Survey criteria

More than 750 manufacturers participating in the Quality Leadership 100 were surveyed on criteria such as scrap and rework as a percentage of sales, warranty costs as a percentage of sales, rejected parts per million shipped and contribution of quality to profitability and shareholder value.

Companies also were evaluated based on the number of quality programs in place; registration to various standards; percentage of employees dedicated to quality responsibilities; average number of hours per month that employees receive quality training; and the role quality professionals play in the acquisition of test, measurement and inspection tools, software and services.

Advics-Ohio manufactures the latest technology component parts, which are designed as part of a fully integrated braking system. Source: Advics-Ohio

Advics Manufacturing Ohio Inc.

Lebanon, OH

Advics Manufacturing Ohio Inc., an OEM supplier of disc brake calipers and anti-lock brake systems to the automotive industry, is no stranger to quality, reliability or excellence. The company began production in 1989 with 50 employees producing one product for one customer-the Ford Escort, with a mission to "manufacture the highest quality, most competitive brake system components in the world." Dedicated team members have worked hard to achieve the mission and make the company successful. Today, more than 500 employees produce disc brake calipers and ABS units for more than 20 different vehicles for many of the world's leading auto manufacturers.

The company's goal is to manufacture the highest quality and most competitive braking system components in the world and they pride themselves in having quality goals higher than industry standards. "We are able to meet and surpass these standards with a dedicated team that is knowledgeable in the details of each manufacturing and assembly process throughout the caliper and ABS facilities."

Teams prepare the correct job standards so everyone works toward the same goal for each project. Each team member then performs the job to the prepared standard to eliminate variance in the products. As a final step, team members check the work performed against the original standards to ensure that quality goods are ready for delivery to their customers. Every part is tested to ensure that products are shipped without the same repeated errors.

Advics-Ohio employs just-in-time production, a method that allows problems to be identified and solved at virtually every step of the manufacturing and assembly processes.

In addition to hands-on work in their designated areas, team members make significant contributions to the company through suggestions and improvement groups. Team members are encouraged to share their ideas about everything from complex processes to routine tasks. Working as a group, they find a solution, develop a plan and implement change.

Scientists at Abbott use structural biology technologies to map molecules and design better drugs. Source: Abbott Laboratories

Abbott Laboratories

Abbott Park, IL

Founded more than 100 years ago by Chicago physician Dr. Wallace C. Abbott, Abbott has emerged as one of the world's top health care companies. Today, Abbott discovers, develops, manufactures and markets products and services that span the continuum of care, from prevention and diagnosis, to treatment and cure. Abbott casts a keen focus on areas with the greatest unmet medical need, such as oncology, infectious diseases, diabetes, obesity, immunology and cardiovascular disease.

With industry-leading internal research capabilities, Abbott combines science and innovation to develop breakthrough medical technologies that advance patient care through leading pharmaceuticals and medical products, including diagnostics, medical devices and nutritionals. About 40% of sales are outside of the United States and more than 60,000 employees in 130 countries around the world support Abbott's vision to be the world's premier health care company and to bring maximum benefit to patients.

Not only does Abbott have numerous awards bestowed on it every year-including Forbes magazine's Top 500 American Companies and the Forbes Platinum 400 and one of America's Most Admired Companies and America's Best Wealth Creators by Fortune magazine-the company also recognizes its outstanding suppliers with its Supplier Excellence award. Each winner is recognized for exceptional contributions to Abbott. Recipients are chosen from 8,000 worldwide suppliers because of their outstanding performance and continuous improvement in supplying materials, equipment and services to Abbott.

"As a global health care company, Abbott's business requires excellence from its supply chain around the world, and the Supplier Excellence Awards recognize those suppliers who meet the highest standards," says Sarah Catterson, divisional vice president, Abbott Purchasing. "These companies make significant contributions to the success of Abbott and we thank them for their commitment to excellence."

The Abbott Supplier Excellence award program began in 1991 and uses an assessment process that combines feedback from internal stakeholders, including manufacturing, material control, quality, engineering, administrative services and select others. The program identifies Abbott's highest performing suppliers by assessing performance in the categories of logistics, quality, service, cost leadership and continuous improvement.

Designed specifically for the hygienist, ProphyAir handpieces offer a compact, one-piece design that includes an integrated air motor and smooth, ball-bearing-style connector. Source: A-dec Inc.

A-dec Inc.

Newberg, OR

With an extensive global network of authorized dealers and customers in more than 100 countries, A-dec is one of the largest dental equipment manufacturers in the world. A-dec designs, builds and markets much of what is seen in dental operations, including chairs, stools, delivery systems, dental lights, cabinetry, handpieces and a full line of accessories. A-dec's primary focus is to create equipment innovations that help doctors perform healthier, more efficient dentistry-a mission the company has adhered to since it began more than 40 years ago.

Ken and Joan Austin founded A-dec in 1964 with only two products and an original goal of 10 paid employees in five years, but these first two products helped A-dec reach that employee goal in less than a year. Today, the company has more than 900 employees. The Austins still lead the company and continue to maintain a reputation for leadership in quality and innovation.

Oregon Business magazine has consistently ranked the company as one of Oregon's top places to work. But according to Ken, A-dec's recognition has more to do with the company's loyal workforce. "Our success is really the result of our employees' achievements," he says. "The honors are great, but don't mean as much as our relationships with our people. They're our strongest asset."

A-dec's working philosophy is a commitment to strive for excellence in all that it does. The company developed the A-dec Way, a written expression of the operating philosophy that governs all aspects of the company:

• Concern for people

• Provide opportunities and assist in self-development

• Provide an atmosphere encouraging self-satisfaction and pride

• Encourage team effort

• Maintain complete fairness, honesty and integrity

• Maintain open consistent and regular communication

• Encourage public service

• Encourage creativity

• Commitment to productivity and quality

• Maintain consistency

• Dedication to improvement

• Keep things simple and basic

• Build on the basis of "need"

• Attention to detail

• Conserve resources

Quality plays a big role in the company's current and future plans. To improve manufacturing processes, employees partake in a variety of quality programs including Kaizen, lean manufacturing, preventive maintenance, problem solving, quality operating system, Six Sigma and total quality management. Quality has improved the company profits and shareholder value by 70%.

Agco, Jackson Operations

Jackson, MN

Products manufactured at Agco Corp.'s Jackson, MN, facility include Spra-Coupe sprayers, Willmar fertilizer handling equipment, Ag-Chem floaters and sprayers, and Challenger track tractors. What goes on behind the doors of this 418,000 square-foot facility is what makes Ag-Chem Division's products unique in the agricultural industry.

This is a manufacturing facility in which raw materials are delivered and out of which comes the uniquely conceived, designed and engineered custom application equipment. Each piece of equipment that leaves Ag-Chem's manufacturing plant takes with it years of research and development, production expertise and the dedication of more than 1,600 people.

The Terra-Gator and RoGator product lines are specially designed to apply fertilizer, protective farm chemicals and nutrients to the field. Ag-Chem manufactures these row-crop applicators and high-flotation vehicles from conception to productivity in its own technologically advanced manufacturing facilities. These manufacturing facilities enable Ag-Chem to deliver the most productive and reliable custom application equipment available.

The Agco Application Division manufactures and markets a full line of self-propelled, off-road chassis. The chassis are usually sold with a product application system installed. This equipment incorporates the latest in engineering and technological advances and many are computer controlled.

Agco is dedicated to quality. On average, employees receive between one and four hours of quality training per month. Some of the quality programs employees take part in to improve manufacturing processes include Kaizen activities, lean manufacturing, preventive maintenance, problem solving, Six Sigma and total quality management. All locations hold ISO 9001 certification.

To further its commitment to quality, every part that the facility produces is tested to ensure that products are shipped without the same repeated errors.

ArvinMeritor is a global supplier of integrated systems, modules and components to the motor vehicle industry, including those in the light vehicle market. Source: ArvinMeritor


Troy, MI

ArvinMeritor Inc. is an $8 billion global supplier of a broad range of integrated systems, modules and components to the motor vehicle industry. The company serves light vehicle, commercial truck, trailer and specialty original equipment manufacturers, and related aftermarkets. ArvinMeritor employs approximately 31,000 people at more than 120 manufacturing facilities in 25 countries.

ArvinMeritor participates in a variety of quality programs including preventive maintenance, problem solving, total quality management and lean manufacturing.

In March 2004, ArvinMeritor's Light Vehicle Systems (LVS) Gladstone Avenue exhaust manufacturing plant in Columbus, IN, received the 2004 Shingo Prize for Excellence in Manufacturing.

"Receiving the Shingo Prize is a great honor and a testament to the company's continuous improvement culture. That culture is inspiring our employees to redesign traditional practices into processes that reduce costs and improve customer satisfaction," said Keith Warf, vice president of global operations, LVS Air and Emissions Technologies. "Through an engaged workforce of more than 700 people, the facility has made substantial quality and productivity improvements. Today, Gladstone's operations focus on lean manufacturing principles, team-building and employee involvement practices."

The Shingo Prize is administered by the College of Business at Utah State University. It is the only industrial excellence award in the world that focuses on lean manufacturing principles that were first implemented in the Toyota Production System.

LVS Gladstone's achievements include a 72% decrease in customer parts per million (PPM) since 2000, a 99% decrease in supplier PPMs since 2000, a 54% decrease in the cost of non-quality since 2000, and an on-time delivery average of 99.9% since 1999.

Quality Leadership 100

1. Advics Manufacturing

Ohio Inc.

Lebanon, OH

2. Abbott Laboratories

Abbott Park, IL

3. A-dec

Newberg, OR

4. AGCO, Jackson Operations

Jackson, MN

5. ArvinMeritor

Troy, MI

6. Aviation Materials Management Inc.

Ogden, UT

7. Crocker Ltd.

Three Rivers, MI

8. HBD/Thermoid

Bellefontaine, OH

9. Honda Manufacturing of Alabama

Lincoln, AL

10. Northrop Grumman

Los Angeles

11. Portola Tech International

Woonsocket, RI

12. Photometrics

Tucson, AZ

13. Rockwell Automation


14. Teledyne Controls

Los Angeles

15. CNH


16. OGS Technologies Inc.

Cheshire, CT

17. Martin-Baker

Boothwyn, PA

18. Decker Manufacturing


Albion, MI

19. Foster Wheeler North America Corp.

Clinton, NJ

20. Delphi

Troy, MI

21. Raytheon Co.

Waltham, MA

22. Bunker Plastics Inc.

Grand Saline, TX

23. Niagara Thermal Products LLC

Niagara Falls, NY

24. Easley Custom Plastics

Easley, SC

25. Stanadyne Corp.

Windsor, CT

26. Luhrs Corp.

St. Augustine, FL

27. Micron Technology Inc.

Boise, ID

28. Clampco Products Inc.

Wadsworth, OH

29. Ford Motor Co.

Dearborn, MI

30. Modern Industries Inc.


31. Rheem Manufacturing Co.

New York

32. Honeywell International

Morristown, NJ

33. Microscan Systems Inc.

Renton, WA

34. Friedrich Air Conditioning

San Antonio

35. Bud Industries Inc.

Willoughby, OH

36. Burnham Hydronics

Lancaster, PA

37. Enginetics Corp.

Dayton, OH

38. Ligon Brothers Manufacturing

Almont, MI

39. Mayes Brothers Tool Manufacturing

Johnson City, TN

40. Cascade Designs Inc.


41. GKN Sinter Metals

Auburn Hills, MI

42. Processed Plastic Co.

Montgomery, IL

43. Whirlpool Corp.

Benton Harbor, MI

44. L-3 Communications

New York

45. Mark Andy Inc.

St. Louis

46. STMicroelectronics

Carrollton, TX

47. Daystar Products


48. Horiba Instruments Inc.

Irvine, CA

49. Orthofix Inc.

McKinney, TX

50. Pave Technology Co. Inc.

Dayton, OH

51. Alsco Metals Corp.

Raleigh, NC

52. General Motors Corp.


53. Donson Machine Co.

Alsip, IL

54. Federal-Mogul

Southfield, MI

55. Keihin Carolina System Technology Inc.

Tarboro, NC

56. Keihin Indiana Precision Technology Inc.

Greenfield, IN

57. Tem-Pace Inc.

Niles, MI

58. Vacco Industries

El Monte, CA

59. Visteon Corp.

Van Buren Township, MI

60. Behr Process Corp.

Santa Ana, CA

61. Emerson Power Transmission

Ithaca, NY

62. National Technologies Inc.

Oak Creek, WI

63. Springfield Mfg. LLC

Clover, SC

64. Time Mark Corp.

Tulsa, OK

65. Bert R. Huncilman & Son Inc.

New Albany, OH

66. Proex Inc.

Batavia, IL

67. Sauer-Danfoss

Ames, IA

68. Checker Motors

Kalamazoo, MI

69. Industrial Hard Chrome

Geneva, IL

70. Keytronic Corp.

Spokane, WA

71. Performance Assembly Solutions

Livonia, MI

72. General Electric Co.

Fairfield, CT

73. The Metrix Co.

Dubuque, IA

74. Grede Foundries-

New Castle

New Castle, IN

75. Mayville Engineering

Mayville, WI

76. Bayer Corp.


77. Bekum America Corp.

Williamston, MI

78. Davol Inc.

Cranston, RI

79. Parker Hannifin


80. Belport Co. Inc.

Camarillo, CA

81. Cableconn Industries

San Diego

82. General Dynamics

Falls Church, VA

83. Haldex Commercial

Vehicle Systems

Kansas City, MO

84. Hitachi America Ltd.

Brisbane, CA

85. IntraLase Corp.

Irvine, CA

86. JAE Electronics Inc.

Irvine, CA

87. Robert Bosch Corp.

Broadview, IL

88. Sanden Vendo of America


89. Sick Stegmann Inc.

Dayton, OH

90. Slant/Fin Corp.

Greenvale, NY

91. Tyco Electronics

Harrisburg, PA

92. AirBorn Operating LP

Addison, TX

93. Arrow Group Industries Inc.

Breese, IL

94. Indalex Aluminum Solutions

Lincolnshire, IL

95. Johnson Controls


96. Lovejoy Inc.

Downers Grove, IL

97. Midland Manufacturing Co.

Ft. Worth, TX

98. Portec Flomaster

Canon City, CO

99. Remy International Inc.

Anderson, IN

100. Ring Masters LLC

Massillon, OH