Quality Assurance vs Quality Control : What is the Difference

Quality assurance and quality control and part of the quality system that plays a key role in controlling the quality of output products on a production line. Sometimes these words are used interchangeably but they are completely different. In this article, we will try to understand the difference between quality assurance vs quality control.

To understand the difference, firstly we will understand what is Quality Assurance and Quality Control? We suggest you also read this article on line balancing.

Quality Assurance vs Quality Control : What is the Difference?

To understand the difference, firstly we will understand what is quality assurance and what is quality control?

What is Quality Assurance?

Quality Assurance or QA defines a set of planned and systematic activities in a quality system to ensure the quality of manufactured products. It prevents the defects by finding any flaws in the system and ensures products are manufactured as per required quality.

In other words, Quality Assurance gives confidence that quality requirements will be fulfilled. These activities are generally done before the quality control.

What is Quality Control?

Quality control or QC is used in a quality system to prevent defects in manufactured products. Compared to quality assurance, quality control controls the inspection of products, parts, processes, methods, and techniques.

QC activities are done after the QA to monitor or inspect the implemented processes to ensure the quality of manufactured products.

Quality Assurance vs Quality Control
THis image shows the difference between Quality Assurance vs Quality Control.
Quality Control is a part of quality assurance and both come under the umbrella of a Quality system. Sometimes these two words are used interchangeably. But they are completely different in the way they control the quality of a product.

S.No.Quality AssuranceQuality Control
1.Defines a set of planned and systematic activities in the quality system to ensure the quality of manufactured products.Used in a quality system to prevent the defects in a manufactured product.
2.QA team defines processes for creating high-quality products.QC team do verification of processes and inspection of products after manufacturing.
3.Process OrientatedProduct Orientated.
4.Avoid the defects.Identify and fix the defects.
5.Process OrientatedProduct Orientated.
6.Proactive Measure : Focus is on PreventionReactive measures : Focus is on detection
7.Involves Activities such as Documentation, Audits, Supplier management, training and Change control. Involves activities such as Batch inspection, Product sampling, Validation testing etc.
8.This activity is done before Quality control.QC is done before Quality Assurance.
9.QA focus on manufacturing processesFocus on implementation on processes and inspection.

We will keep adding more information on the difference between quality assurance vs quality control. Please add your suggestions, comments or, questions on Quality assurance vs quality control in the comment box. We suggest you also read this article on Lean manufacturing.

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