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English version of VDA dictionary

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Checklist, a standardised set of questions to verify/assess activities, processes, etc. should be compiled for key project steps. Templates and recommendations can be found in literature.

Root cause (causes)

Root cause is a cause that upon repeated questioning: “Why did the nonconformity/unexpected event occur?” leads to no other lower-level structure; it is often perceived as the “root” of nonconformity (fault).


Couching is a process of directing individuals or groups using appropriate methods so as to unblock their perception of the system, or the role attitude and to initiate self-organisation processes. A coach himself/herself should be able on his/her own or with his/her associates to develop his/her abilities to solve problems and better manage work requirements or the application of methods. Coaching occurs in two forms:

Short-term capability

Is referred to when insufficient parts from series production are available, e.g. for machinery and production equipment acceptance.

Critical characteristics

Critical characteristics are such characteristics with individually estimated risks that: -are deemed directly threatening health and life with the risk resulting from the product, - depend on the adherence to legal requirements (e.g. emission). Critical characteristics are to some extent defined as specific characteristics in a sense of ISO/TS 16949:2009.

Piece production

Production of a single product, or according to repeated orders (i.e. workshop production).


Degree to which a set of inherent characteristics fulfils requirements

LFT (German “Lieferant“)

German abbreviation for a supplier, see Supplier.

Configuration management

Being part of a project management, “configuration management” is applied when assembly/adjustment and acceptance to operation are done on customer's premises. The term covers all the activities to be coordinated and performed on site.

Quality management

Coordinated activities to direct and control an organisation with regard to quality.

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