Speedboard Appoints Benjamin Thorpe as Quality Manager


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Speedboard Assembly Services has appointed Benjamin Thorpe to the position of quality manager.

Thorpe joins Speedboard with more than 10 years' experience within a quality-related role in the electronics manufacturing industry. Exposure to other industries include aerospace, defense and education; inclusive of the completion of five years' service within the British Armed Forces. PRINCE2 Practitioner, Lead Auditor, and hands-on demonstrable utility of Six Sigma methods, tools and techniques, Thorpe paraphrases Aristotle when he says, "We are what we repeatedly do,” and that "Excellence is not a single act, but rather, a habit."

Thorpe continues, "I am a firm believer that continuous improvement is not something merely done, but rather something that we are; something that we continually strive to become. I am devoted to the facilitation of positive change through experiential learning – a continual striving for excellence, ensuring that our processes – as an extension of our customers operations operate both effectively and efficiently; yielding the timely delivery of defect-free products and services to the customer."

As quality manager, Benjamin will be responsible for continuing Speedboard's culture of quality; maintaining quality standards and approvals; and providing quality support to all departments to achieve their goals.

Speedboard is also demonstrating its commitment to quality in upholding IPC standards, by investing even further in IPC training for production staff. This is part of the organisation’s dedication to improving workmanship at all levels, as well as providing customers with the guarantee that Speedboard's employees possess the skills needed to manufacture the most demanding of assemblies efficiently. 

Neil Owen, Speedboard’s managing director, who is also a Six Sigma Black Belt and trained QS9000 and ISO9001 auditor, comments on the importance of IPC training for staff, "We believe that the investment in training really pays dividends with the morale and the general well-being of our staff. An equally important factor is that it allows Speedboard to offer the highest level of capability in electronics assembly, which we feel is imperative as we continue to produce higher technology assemblies."

Continuing the quality focus, Speedboard has renewed its sign-up to SC21, the supply chain improvement program developed and managed by the trade organisation ADS for companies operating in the aerospace, defense, security and space industries; but which has the potential to make companies operating in all industry sectors more efficient and competitive. The program enables Speedboard to demonstrate and be recognized for the quality of its services plus its ability to meet delivery dates.

Signing up to SC21 is part of Speedboard's commitment to achieving high performance in both business and manufacturing excellence, and to becoming a leaner, more efficient and responsive organisation, transforming us from being just a CEM to an embedded manufacturing partner for each of our customers. 

Speedboard was recently certified to the new ISO 9001:2015 standard. An independent assessment was conducted by the leading certification body BSI (British Standards Institution) and the auditor's report flagged no non-conformity issues and described Speedboard's quality management system as 'outstanding.'

This clear focus on all things quality related, endorses the company's ongoing commitment to ensuring that quality underpins everything Speedboard do.

About Speedboard Assembly Services

Established in 1983, Speedboard Assembly Services is a UK-based Contract Electronics Manufacturer (CEM), serving customers in a variety of sectors, including Industrial, Defence, Medical, Communications, Broadcast and Security. The company offers a broad range of electronic manufacturing services, ranging from traditional build-to-print through to full lifecycle; prototyping, full production, packaging, delivery to end customer, repairs and after sales support.

Speedboard has four SMT lines which, between them, comprise 12 Siemens SiPlace machines, together with a dedicated UV cured conformal coating line. The company also has a selective soldering line and a vapour-phase oven, thus enabling Speedboard to tackle increasingly complex PCBAs (such as double-sided, mixed technology boards) and boards with areas of widely varying thermal mass. Test capabilities include Automatic Optical Inspection (AOI), X-ray, BGA Scope, Boundary-scan, In-Circuit Test (ICT – both flying probe and bed-of-nails), Functional Test and Soak Testing. For more information, please click here.

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