Quality inspection is a continuous process whereby entities assess the quality of various factors involved in manufacturing. Glossary of Modern Language Usage (MLM) defines quality control as: "the process of achieving quality objectives by the reduction of total cost or value". Therefore, it is important to reduce cost of production and/or improve the effectiveness of the supply chain. To this end, organizations conduct quality inspections and participate in quality improvement programs to achieve these goals.
A quality inspection starts when the client factories conduct their own quality inspections, after which the inspector from the factory sends his comments and suggestions back to the client factory. The next step in the feedback loop is for the customer to validate the observations made by the quality inspector. If the observations are confirmed then the customer needs to make some adjustments to his production process or reschedule his production process in order to accommodate the changes.
Once the inspection process is complete, the factory may send its final report to the buyer. It is common for the buyer to take one final step in the inspection process - re-assessment of the production data. In other words, the buyer will reassess the condition of the production equipment used and the process used to deliver and manage inventory. When a factory completes its final report, the buyer may require the supplier to provide a progress report that details the steps that have been taken to address his concerns. In some cases, the supplier will require the buyer to provide written assurances that the manufacturer has implemented the suggested improvements.