Plant Certification Audit Update
As previously announced, all in-plant audits of PCI-certified plants were suspended until May 18. After reviewing the current situation regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, we have decided to begin a very limited resumption of in-plant audits. This will be a very “soft” opening with audits of some plants within driving distance of Nashville. These will be sensitive to local travel restrictions and other mandated safety precautions, for the protection of both the plant and audit staff.
In the meantime, we have implemented our process for performing remote audits in lieu of in-plant audits, while we are impacted by COVID-19. As of May 15, almost 50 remote audits had been scheduled for May and June. Thank you for your cooperation. We realize that these audits are not the norm and appreciate your understanding and assistance, especially when you are dealing with your own COVID-19 issues at your plants. We anticipate the great majority of the remaining audits through the end of June will be conducted remotely.
Erector Certification Audit Update
All company audits of certified erectors were suspended in mid-March. A procedure for conducting remote audits while companies are impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic is being developed and is expected to be implemented within the next few weeks.
Schedule for Architectural Certification Audits Released
The audit schedule for the new architectural program has been completed and notifications of the two- week audit windows will be distributed to those plants that submitted applications to the new program categories, beginning the week of May 18. These audits are currently scheduled to begin July 1st. Obviously, adjustments will be made as circumstances dictate.
As a reminder to all architectural plants, production drawings and concrete mix designs for the mockup panels are to be submitted 45 days in advance of the architectural program audits. We realize that this will be a very tight time frame for those plants scheduled for July but encourage plants to submit these as soon as possible. These reviews are intended to help assure that the plans for the mockup panels comply with the requirements of the Architectural Certification Program Supplemental Requirements and are for the benefit of the plant. Please submit these, as required, to RBA at email@example.com and to PCI at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Request for Architectural Precast Concrete Photos
PCI needs your help to make the rollout of the new PCI Architectural Certification Program a big success. This is also great opportunity to have your precast concrete projects and companies be featured in publicity and resources which thousands of people will see the next several months.
PCI is looking for producers to provide images of representative architectural precast concrete that can be used in a series of presentations, publications, marketing collateral, and much more for the new architectural categories. These images can be of various types and complexities of architectural panels. While we appreciate photos of completed projects, we especially desire orthogonal views of individual panels.
We are seeking photos demonstrating facets of each of the new categories:
- AA: Architectural products with multiple concrete mixtures and textures in extremely unique projects. Extremely unique projects that include complex geometry and surface profiles Projects that may require extremely tight tolerances for material interfaces
- AB: Projects that have three-dimensional surface profiles such as bullnoses, cornices, radii, and integral returns. Projects that have multiple concrete mixes and/or surface finishes, stone, ceramic, tile, or terra cotta veneers
- AC: Plants producing products with architectural finishes such as cladding and wall panels with plant-applied finishes, including brick veneers and formliners.
- AD: Plants producing structural products with an architectural finish such as wall panels with plant-applied finishes, including structural products with brick veneers and formliners or extruded profiles.
- AT: Plants producing architectural trim products such as copings and lintels with plant-applied finishes.
Please complete the image license request form for any images provided. For more information, email Becky King at email@example.com.
Plant and Erector Certification Renewals Due May 31
REMINDER - The deadline for all PCI-certified plants and certified erectors to return their annual renewal documentation is May 31, 2020. For certified plants, this includes submitting signed contracts and completing he online sales declaration process. For certified erectors, this includes submitting signed contracts and completing the online certification renewal form. The designated contact for all certified plants and erectors should have received an email with instructions on how to complete these processes. Please note that failure to complete these renewals on time will result in a lapse in certification. For any questions regarding certification status, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. For any questions regarding the designated contact, please contact email@example.com.
Exceptional Precast Practices Deadline is July 1
Companies that have successfully adopted a path of continuous quality improvement typically exhibit a pattern of reduced costs, improved quality, and expanded capabilities. They show growing sales because they better serve the needs of their clients.
There are a variety of tools available, but are you looking for a continuous quality improvement tool developed specifically for the precast concrete industry? The Exceptional Precast Practices (EPP) program, developed by the Quality Enhancement Committee, offers both a roadmap for your efforts and milestones for measuring your progress.
Born out of the QA 2020 Vision Program, the key working committees at PCI have set forth a self-assessment and the process steps that provide both the roadmap and the milestones for continuous improvement.
Here is how it works: Your plant fills out the self-assessment survey for each of the seven sections/modules – Productivity, Personnel, Safety, Field operations, Sales and marketing, Sustainable plant, and Concrete. This process allows your plant to not only benchmark where you are today but also review programs of proven worth that other PCI plants find valuable.
That process allows plant personnel to decide on a roadmap for the future. If this process is managed well, that roadmap becomes the goals and programs for improvement, and it provides the basis for accountability for achievement. Your benchmark score allows your plant to actually measure progress from year to year. There is no minimum score required. This is not a contest. Scores will not be published. There is no overall winner. All participants who participate in this voluntary program seriously win. All participating plants are provided with an annual certificate of participation and are recognized at the PCI Committee Days and Technical Conference.
To participate or to read more about the program, access PCI Member Resources. To receive recognition for 2020, completed forms must be returned to PCI by July 1.
T. Henry Clark Award Nominations Due June 1
Nominations for the T. Henry Clark Award, to be presented during the 2020 PCI Committee Days, September 22–25, 2020, should be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org by June 1, 2020. View the T. Henry Clark Award Nomination Form.
The T. Henry Clark Award was established to recognize an individual, group of individuals, or firm that has delivered a resource that improves or enhances the quality of precast/prestressed concrete products or processes. T. Henry Clark believed in quality and quality processes, and this award is to recognize those who create or promote quality in a way that would have made him proud.
For more information, contact Gary Wildung, the Quality Activities Council chair, at email@example.com or Mike Kesselmayer, PCI managing director of quality programs, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please forward suggestions for future quality-related articles for this newsletter to Mike Kesselmayer at email@example.com.