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Correction vs. Corrective Action:


Two terms. They sound like the same thing.  In reality, they are closely related, but the differences are substantial.  The first, correction, has to do with fixing mistakes or errors.  The second, corrective action, has to do with fixing the system that allowed the mistakes or errors to occur and go undetected in the first place.


An example may help.  The Big Casting Company (BC) specializes in manufacturing aluminum castings in accordance with the requirements of its customers.  BC received a part drawings from one of its customers, Castings Made 4U.  BC used its expertise to design and build the mold and cores from which the castings will be made.  The depth of a particular cored hole was specified as 0.500 +/- 0.020 inches.  When BC designed the mold/cores, its engineer made an error- he specified this cored hole as 0.050, +/- 0.020 inches.  The error was caught when the first part off the mold/core was set up for first-article inspection.


Taking this example, the mold/core needed to be corrected.  That was not too big of a deal, as it took BC a very short time to redesign the core, obtain a new core, place it in the mold and pour new castings.    However, the customer, Castings 4U was not very happy as this put the project in jeopardy of being late.  So, Castings 4U asked BC to determine the cause and implement corrective action.  Now, we are getting to the difference.  Had BC stopped at the correction  to the core design, there is a chance that the problem could recur.  So, BC embarked on an investigation to determine why the problem occurred.  Following is a brief description of the BC quoting process:

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