It’s hard to determine the quality of any business, let alone a chrome plating facility. Our customers often don’t have a local solution for their chroming needs. This is due to specific handling and capacity requirements.
We asked professionals in the industry what to look for. They said there are 4 key indicators of quality and trust. These indicators are: Experienced Professionals, Recognized Quality Programs, The Facility, and Environmental Responsibility and Safety
“A business is only as good as its people” is a cliché for a reason − it’s true. One of the first questions you should ask any facility you are considering is “how experienced are your professionals?” Find out what credentials they hold, as well as if the tradespeople on the floor have any specialties. By doing so, you can quickly determine whether or not the facility is right for you. Experienced professionals will be able to find the problems, correct them and complete the job efficiently. They will do it on time and on budget.
If a company consists of a strong team, you know that quality is important to them. Your cylinders will be in good hands.
Recognized Quality Programs
Most companies publicize a commitment to quality. Often these claims are undocumented or from programs or best practice policies that are unreliable. What you want to see are companies who have invested in respected quality programs like Lloyd’s Register and ISO.
When a company is certified by Lloyds Register of London, you know they’ve put in the work. Their systems and processes have met intense requirements and their facility upholds exceptional standards. If the company you are considering has achieved this certification, you will receive superior quality each and every time.
A company who is certified, or in the process of being certified by ISO, demonstrates their commitment to continuous improvement. ISO: 9001:2015 is a quality management system certification. Companies must meet rigorous standards consistently in order to earn ISO certification
When you see this advertised by a chroming facility, you will receive first-class chroming each and every time.
All facilities are not equal in their capacity. It is important to pick a facility that is outfitted with the proper equipment to handle your needs. Consider the capacity of their cranes, the depth and number of chroming tanks, testing capabilities, and precision techniques.
Technology plays a significant role in determining quality. Make it a priority to find out how advanced a facility’s systems are. Many companies have not invested in technological advancements, which leads to avoidable inconsistencies caused by manual error.
The number of facilities that are properly outfitted with machinery needed to handle large jobs are few and far between. If you have unique needs, make sure the facility you choose is equipped to handle the job. Ask if the job can be done on-site. Companies will often take your business and outsource it to a shop that has the technology and high capacity needed. If there is a well-established relationship between the companies, this is fine. If communication is lacking, your costs will increase and so will your downtime.
Environmental Responsibilities and Safety
Each year, chroming companies are changing their environmental responsibility by making commitments to reduce their environmental impact. Employees need to be properly trained to handle and dispose of hazardous materials.
Look for a company that advertises ISO 14001:2015, or is in the process of attaining it. ISO 14001:2015 means that the company has reached the highest degree of environmental responsibility. They have the most up-to-date and effective environmental management systems.
There are numerous environmental concerns for the chroming industry. When researching potential shops, be aware of the company’s pollution control system. It is important to note that chrome plating is safe, but the deposition process when done incorrectly can be harmful. With the correct systems in place, the pollution can be contained. To find out if the company you are considering follows proper procedures, here are some things to look for:
- A scrubber system that traps chromic acid and prevents pollutants from being released into the atmosphere. This is extremely important as the acid is a genotoxic carcinogen.
- Make sure that the facility has a separate chroming area. Isolation is important because it prevents the transfer of chromic acid.
- To prevent contaminants from going into the ground, the pit must be completely encapsulated. The contaminated water must be treated.
Before committing to a chrome plating facility, make sure you investigate the company and their commitments to quality. It is important that you choose a company able to deliver the quality to handle your equipment.