What It Means to Be NADCAP Approved

November 16, 2021

In 2020 the global aerospace market reached 298.01 billion US dollars. With so much money in the market, there is a lot of competition between different suppliers. One way a supplier can stand out is by ensuring it is NADCAP accredited. NADCAP approved suppliers can provide high-quality parts to their customers. If you are looking for a supplier it is worth going with one that has such accreditation. This will ensure any parts meet the highest standards. If you are wondering what NADCAP certification is, and why it is important, keep reading.

What Is NADCAP Accreditation?

NADCAP (National Aerospace and Defense Contractors Accreditation Program) is a certification that can be granted to suppliers. It ensures the goods that they provide and the processes they use meet certain standards. Government and industry experts work together to determine the requirements needed for accreditation. They also issue said accreditation and define operational program requirements. Before the existence of NADCAP, aerospace companies would need to audit suppliers themselves. This would be to make sure they met their process requirements. This meant unnecessary work was created without generating further results.

Companies are often ISO certified. In the aerospace manufacturing industry ISO 9100D is a requirement. NADCAP is an optional certification, showing that a company is a step above the competition. ISO standardization is generally a way of ensuring companies meet certain regulatory requirements. This is to make sure products and services meet the needs of customers. 

NADCAP involves special processes used in product manufacturing. The goal is to improve industry standards over time as well as reduce the risks that come with sub-standard processes. These audits have always been needed as the most common reason for the failure of parts is due to the processes used by suppliers. Carrying out audits means avoiding potential failures in the long run.

With the introduction of NADCAP, audits are more comprehensive and of a higher standard. Aerospace and defense companies also no longer need to do their auditing. This makes things easier and more cost-effective across the whole manufacturing process.

The Advantages of Being NADCAP Approved

NADCAP approval certifies a supplier as one that uses processes at a necessary standard. It is specifically for companies in the aerospace and defense industry. Suppliers are given a clear outline of any processes used when manufacturing goods. This ensures that all products are at the standard they should be.

Most companies desire to work with suppliers that are NADCAP-approved. For some, it is a necessity. This includes Airbus, Boeing, Honeywell, and Rolls Royce. The use of NADCAP auditing has resulted in more standardization in aerospace manufacturing. As all NADCAP-approved suppliers follow the same processes, parts produced will tend towards being similar.

The auditors are also very experienced and knowledgeable. As such, they can carry out all audits correctly and efficiently. Their familiarity with the process provides better results all around. NADCAP approval has helped improve safety throughout the aerospace industry. Companies also have reduced rates of re-working, and have reported lower scrap rates.

Why Choose a NADCAP Certified Supplier?

When purchasing from a NADCAP-approved manufacturing company you know you will be able to buy with confidence. Any parts will have been made in compliance with NADCAP regulations. As such they will be less likely to fail or have any flaws.

The largest companies in aerospace and defense use NADCAP-approved suppliers. NAMF produces goods for several reputable companies. Among these are Airbus, GE Aviation, and L3 Technologies. If purchasing from a supplier that is not NADCAP-approved, you will more than likely need to perform your audits. This will create further costs, and, likely, these audits will not be of the same standard as NADCAP.

Performing these audits results in more time and money spent before any parts are even purchased. There is also a reasonable chance of these parts being of lower quality. NADCAP audits can be a costly and time-consuming process. A company that is certified has committed to not just having these audits done but also making any corrections that may have been necessary. Being certified shows that a company follows the best practices, and delivers the best quality goods to customers. If a company has been accredited several times that shows a level of consistency that not all manufacturers can attest to.

How Long Does NADCAP Approval Last?

Accreditation initially lasts for 12 months and is based on the date of the initial audit. This means that if any corrective action needs to be taken, this will cut into the timespan of the accreditation. Reaccreditation audits are scheduled automatically. Companies need to ensure that they maintain the standards necessary over time. Otherwise, they may lose their accreditation at a later audit.

Companies should be well prepared for audits beforehand. This can help avoid the need for corrective measures and the certification will last for the greatest possible time. A company’s first approval will last for 12 months. The next 2 reaccreditations are also for 12 months each. After this, further reaccreditations can last either 12, 18, or 24 months depending on the performance of the supplier.

Purchasing From a NADCAP Approved Supplier

When deciding on a supplier, it is safe to say that going with one that has NADCAP certification is the right choice. New Age Metal Fabricating is NADCAP-approved. We currently have an 18-month reaccreditation lasting until May 2022. As a leading supplier of enclosures and machined parts for the aerospace industry, our services and products are top of the line. Get in touch and let us know how we can help you.