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Customer specific requirements – what is it?


Qualitywise.pl, Agata Lewkowska, Customer specific Requirements

The automotive industry is a demanding industry: it is necessary to ensure “high” quality of products with timely delivery, focusing on continuous improvement and minimizing errors and losses throughout the supply chain. All this to ensure high competitiveness. Therefore, to be able to meet the requirements, automotive manufacturers require their suppliers to meet the requirements of the IATF 16949 standard. But is this the end of the requirements?

Customer specific requirements – what is it?

First, let’s start that the IATF 16949 standard was developed by the International Automotive Task Force (IATF), which associates OEMs, known as Original Equipment Manufacturers.

 This group includes the following car manufacturers:

  • BMW Group,
  • Daimler AG,
  • Volkswagen AG,
  • Groupe Renault,
  • Stellantis (ex FCA),
  • Stellantis (ex PSA),
  • Ford Motor Company,
  • General Motors,
  • Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) Limited,
  • Geely Group,
  • Iveco.

What, then, are specific customer requirements, i.e. CSRy (Customer Specific Requirements)?

These are interpretations or supplementary requirements related to a specific part of the IATF 16949 standard for the quality management system in the automotive industry.

Therefore, if we have any other customer requirements that do not meet the requirements contained in the IATF 16949 standard, then we speak of “customer requirements”, i.e. requirements contained in a logistics contract.

IATF 16949: 2016 clause 4.3.2: Customer specific requirements

The requirements of this clause make it clear that the organization shall assess and integrate Customer Specific Requirements into the scope of the organization’s quality management system.

This means that we assess whether we can meet the requirements, whether they are applicable or economically justified for us. Remember that OEMs have the right to update CSRs, which may mean that it is not possible to apply everything to already running projects. You should also bear in mind then, whether our contracts with the customer indicate customer specific requirements in the last revision or refer to those from a specific release date.

It is also mandatory to include customer specific requirements in the scope of the quality management system. This means that you need to identify for example in which processes we shall fulfill them.

We should remember here about requirement 7.5.1.1.d), which says that the Quality Manual shall contain a document (for example a table, a list, or a matrix) indicating where within the organizations quality management system their customer-specific requirements are addressed.

Specific customer requirements and audit

IATF 16949 in Clause 9.2.2.2 requires that during its audits, the organization shall consider the specific requirements of the customers for the quality management system to verify their effective implementation.

CSR should be considered when auditing the quality management system processes, focusing on all IATF member clients. Nevertheless, the CSR of clients (as they may be) who are not IATF members are also subject to auditing, although in the case of an IATF third party audit, they will not be prioritized. The organization’s internal audit process shall provide CSR sampling to verify its effective implementation.

Get your own template to manage CSR!

I encourage you to download the CSR template that I have prepared for you. You can use it in your work by editing it as you like.

Hope you found this article interesting.

Thank you for your presence.

Agata Lewkowska Ph.D.

PS. If I can help you with quality management issues, please contact me. You may also join me in my private group on Facebook: ISO 9001 & IATF 16949 QualityWise Group.

For people who want to know more:

IATF 16949: 2016. Requirements for quality management systems in serial production and the production of spare parts in the automotive industry. first edition, 2016

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