Putting Into Place a Quality Management System at Panasonic Energy North America (PENA)

While Panasonic is a storied old company being around for over 100 years, Panasonic Energy Corporation of North America (PENA) located near Reno, Nevada in the GigaFactory One, does not have that history. It is actually quite new and exciting. PENA is a large-scale advanced battery manufacturing division of Panasonic Corporation.

The GigaFactory One grew out of the high desert of Nevada, among the wild horses, to house Tesla and their battery cell supplier, PENA. It is one of the biggest factories in the world, humming with innovation and highly-automated equipment. When we first started consulting with PENA, early jokes often centered around getting lost while trying to navigate our way from one conference room to another, a very real possibility given the sheer size of the facility. But we didn’t get lost, at least not too lost, but we did manage to help PENA achieve a goal of ISO 9001 registration.

PENA’s Quality Management System (QMS) is a collection of business processes focused on achieving the quality policy and quality objectives to meet customer requirements. It is expressed as the organizational structure, policies, procedures, processes and resources needed to implement quality management. PENA began with their first purpose for their QMS, to achieve the world’s safest, highest quality and lowest cost batteries.

While the ISO 9001 registration process was new to PENA, it was not new to Panasonic Corporation and there were many who traveled from Japan to advise and integrate processes that might overlap with what was happening with Panasonic Corporate. Producing and releasing a Quality Manual that met the requirements of all parties along with the ISO 9001 standard was a huge leap and the launching point for many of the further QMS/ISO activities. Recruitment, education, development, and auditing by an Internal Audit team being one of the crucial processes.

All in all it was a great growing experience for ourselves and we believe all parties involved. To PENA we would just like to say Doumo arigatou gozaimashita (thank you very much)!