What are the 7 Questions You Should Ask Your Calibration Company?
As a consumer of calibration services it is sometimes difficult to know exactly what you are being quoted.
Here are the 7 Questions You Should Ask Your Calibration Company:
- Are you accredited to do this specific calibration?
- Can this calibration be done onsite? If no, why?
- How will I know when my calibrations are due?
- When will I get this back? What is your turnaround time?
- Do you have ASQ Certified Calibration Technicians?
- Describe your internal training process?
- How will you support me during an Audit?
Are you accredited to do this specific calibration?
This is an often overlooked question. Why? A company is accredited for calipers. The assumption is they are accredited for all calipers. This is not correct. The range of accreditation will be pointed out on the Scope of Accreditation. A company may only be accredited to 36" and you might have a 48" caliper.
Can this calibration be done onsite? If no, why?
Look in the notes section of the Scope of Accreditation and look for a comment like this: "Laboratory offers calibration services at the laboratory's own facilities and at the client or other agreed upon facilities." That being said it is NOT always best to have a calibration performed at your facility.
You may want to read Onsite Calibration: Is it always the best choice?
How will I know when my calibrations are due?
Many calibration companies offer a "Menu" of services. You may make the assumption that the quoted cost includes a calibration report, data, uncertainty and sticker with calibration date and due date. This is a false assumption. As a consumer you need to ask specifically what is included in the quoted cost for calibration. You have heard the expression comparing apples to oranges, make sure you know what is included in the quote.
When will I get this back? What is your turnaround time?
The time required to calibrate a 20 channel temperature recorder is drastically different then a 1" Dial Indicator. Find out the standard turnaround and what qualifies as an exception.
Do you have ASQ Certified Calibration Technicians?
While this certification is not the only measure of technical competence, it does require passing a written exam and maintaining professional education.
Describe your internal training process?
As standards change it is critical to know if your calibration company is keeping up. An "informal" training process will most likely NOT meet your needs.
How will you support me during an Audit?
Does this sound familiar? The auditor asks for calibration data and you cannot find it! Does your calibration company have a secure method for you to retrieve your calibration data. We offer CalEnvision so you never have to worry about this.
What about technical support? Does your calibration company provide access to a technical manager who can articulate the what, where, when, why and how a particular calibration was performed?
All things are never equal.
As a consumer of calibration services, ask the right questions. Make sure you know what you are really getting for the price quoted.
Looking for a great independent reference on how to get the best calibration quote?