Supporting Product Safety and Quality

The process from product planning to completion of development and transfer to the production department requires collaboration with various departments such as marketing, sales, quality assurance, manufacturing, and service. In this section, we explain how we face the challenges of improving product safety and quality with the aim of enhancing customer satisfaction.

Process from R&D to production

Initiatives to Secure Product Safety and Quality

Aiming to meet the increasingly high product safety standards seen as important by modern society, we adopted the Advantest Product Safety Charter in May 1995.

To achieve the above, we formulated the “Product Safety Promotion Regulations” and established a company-wide committee as an organization to promote advances in product safety. From May 1995 to the present, this committee has continued to actively take part in product safety improvement initiatives.

In FY2022, we commissioned external specialists to undertake inspections of the safety and durability of 13 major Advantest products.
The results indicated that there was no need for further revision of improvement of Advantest's safety specifications.
It should be noted that, in fiscal 2021 there was one case in which the standards specified in Advantest's Product Safety Promotion Regulations were violated. This case has been rectified by changing the product design in order to comply with the relevant regulations.

Advantest operates a 10 m Radio Anechoic Chamber (EMC Center) that complies with the EMC Act required for the sale of products worldwide.
Europe (CE Marking) and South Korea (KC Marking) in particular have strict EMC laws and regulations.
Even in The United States, Advantest takes measures to comply with American EMC laws and regulations (FCC) due to a risk of litigation caused by noise in the surrounding environment when operating products as well as due to customer requirements.
The EMC Center is run by staff who have acquired the ISO17025 international standards regulating the operation of test facilities, in addition to EMC engineers who have been certified under the International Association for Radio, Telecommunications and Electromagnetics (iNARTE), which allow internationally recognized in-house EMC certified testing.
The facilities of the EMC center also put in place an environment that is capable of testing large industrial machinery that is only available in a few places in Japan thanks to equipment that include a turntable with an 8-meter diameter to equip with products, a 3-phase power supply able to supply a total of 148 KVA power capacity that can withstand 10 t, and equipment that can provide water cooling.

It is necessary to keep an eye on the latest legislative trends for each country of origin particularly for EMC laws and regulations. Advantest collects information about EMC laws and regulations by participating in the KEC Electronic Industry Development Center (KEC) working group. We also provide EMC regulatory information to the semiconductor manufacturing industry through the Semiconductor Equipment Association of Japan (SEAJ).

Advantest Group Quality Policy

Customer satisfaction is the ultimate goal of all our activities.

  • (1) We maintain product quality for the entire life cycle of our products and services and satisfy our customers’ requirements throughout the value chain.
  • (2) We fulfill our social responsibility and increase stakeholder satisfaction through continuous improvement of our quality management system to optimize business processes, while complying with all applicable laws and regulations.
  • (3) We provide technologies, products, and services that satisfy customers in a timely manner.

Quality Management System

In keeping with our product quality plan where customer satisfaction is the fundamental basis of all our activity, we have designed our quality management system to comply with the international quality assurance standard ISO9001 throughout the Company.

We have established an organization to promote the system within the company-wide framework, led by the Quality Assurance Manager under the supervision of the executive management, which maintains and improves quality systems, with the goal of raising customer satisfaction. We have also constructed our own internal audit framework, and we maintain and improve our systems through regular internal audits.

Furthermore, the entire Group (eight countries and 21 sites) is advancing system integration and has acquired the ISO9001 Global Integration Certification as of April 25, 2018 to strengthen global quality management systems.

By FY2022, system integration has expanded further to eight countries and 24 sites.

The number of product recalls in FY2022 was zero with the help of this quality control system.
In the future, we aim to strengthen and expand quality control while maintaining this framework.

ISO9001 global system diagram

Design Review System Aimed at Improving Quality

Customers constantly require functionality, performance, and quality in Advantest products. In response, our circuitry has become increasingly larger and complex. Meanwhile, we are also responding to demands for shorter development lead times, a challenge we feel is best addressed by instilling quality at the upstream design phase so that we can detect potential issues early on. Accordingly, we introduced a new design review system in 2008 as a framework for achieving these goals.

  • Our design review system was amended to ensure that the project leader establishes a design review plan when product development begins, so that reviews are conducted regularly.
  • We changed the system so that the relevant staff and the project leader, as well as the quality assurance group, carry out monitoring to prevent follow-up omissions, by enabling the visual identification of issues raised.
  • We also adopted the Design Review Meister System, which involves forming groups of in-house experts for each technical area to participate in the related design reviews. This system increases the rate of problem detection in design reviews, encourages the succession of technologies, and facilitates in-house education. Many positive results have been achieved through these activities.

For instance, the rate of defect detection during the design phase has recently improved, leading to a decrease in setbacks and minimizing development delays. The new design review system has resulted in improvements in design quality and a reduction in development lead times. However, it has also revealed some cases in which problems that should have been detected by the designer ultimately found their way into the design review or the post process.

Advantest regularly collects analysis and feedback on issues that have gone undetected and makes improvements to the review framework as necessary. Moreover, going forward we will implement further improvements to the design process involving thorough checking prior to design reviews to achieve better design quality.

R&D process and the design review

Activities to Improve Component Quality (SQE Activities)

We are committed to the belief that individual components underpin overall product quality, and therefore the quality of each and every component has to be exceptional. Based on this belief, the Advantest Group engages in SQE (Supplier Quality Engineering) initiatives beginning at the component adoption phase, drawing on the support of our supplier network. SQE initiatives are undertaken with the aim of enlisting a team of experts to bring about improvements to component quality. Accordingly, it is critical that we engage in practices to ensure component quality, particularly given that the number of parts used in our products is roughly equivalent to the 200,000 to 3,000,000 parts that make up an aircraft.

Our SQE initiatives involve the following three practices.

  • Careful selection of components: When given the choice of multiple components with similar performance specifications, we select the best item through a process involving in-house quality analysis and evaluation.
  • Quality improvement through PDCA: We apply PDCA-cycle practices from the component design phase to manufacturing to achieve improvements prior to high-volume production and thereafter.
  • Ensuring that tolerances are maintained in component design: We aim for component design benchmarks determined on the basis of tolerances rather than standard specifications.

In this way, by running SQE activities from the product development stage, we can reduce problems with components in the manufacturing process and the risk of component problems reaching the marketplace, which contributes to greatly reducing the risk of losses. The results of this approach can be seen in the smooth running of our end users' processes and in the increased security that our clients enjoy when using our products.
In addition, by decreasing the number of rejected parts, we decrease the need for their exchange and disposal, and thus contribute to reducing the environmental impact.


Advantest is committed to helping its customers achieve higher levels of productivity by offering them products that guarantee high availability – meaning that they are unlikely to malfunction, and will recover immediately should failure occur. More specifically, availability refers to the ratio of time that a system is operational over a given time, and as such constitutes one of the benchmarks of product integrity. The Advantest Group delivers high availability by working hard to improve MTBF*1 so that systems will operate without malfunction over longer duration of use, while also reducing MTTR*2 so that systems will be more readily serviceable when a malfunction does occur.

*1 To improve MTBF: MTBF: Mean Time Between Failure

*2 To reduce MTTR: MTTR: Mean Time To Repair

Initiatives Aimed at Improving Software Quality

Advantest continues to implement initiatives aimed at improving software quality. Software for test systems, handlers and other such systems shipped by Advantest first goes through a process that involves quality verification by the Quality Assurance Group. The specification sheet, a parallel product of development, is examined by the Quality Assurance Group in real time and feedback is given, which helps to ensure quality at upstream stages of development. The examination is implemented before development is completed, and after it has been confirmed that quality standards have been met, products are shipped.

Advantest promotes the incorporation of Automotive SPICE*1 into the development process in order to ensure the quality of embedded automotive software. In 2021, we obtained Automotive SPICE Level 1 certification for the V93000 system software SmarTest. We are also working to obtain Automotive SPICE Level 2 certification for T2000 system software. These initiatives help to bring about the timely delivery of even better products.

*1: Stands for "Automotive Software Process Improvement and Capability Determination", which is an automotive industry standard software development process model