Traceability stands for traceability, i.e. the ability to trace information based on data or records. The term is defined in the ISO 9001 standard. All relevant information can thus be documented and tracked throughout all processes, from development to traceability on the market. In this way, the entire product history remains transparent.

The term can also be considered and understood from two aspects:
(a) traceability within the manufacturing and supply chain; and
b) internal traceability within a closed production chain.

a) The progression can be followed, from the procurement of raw materials and parts to their machining, assembly, distribution and sales, both downstream and upstream. Manufacturers can track the journey of their products, while companies and customers can see the path the products have taken in their hands.
Manufacturers can recall products, or find root causes if problems occur with their products. Customers can also use this system to select products that offer high reliability.

b) Here, the movement of products or parts in a clearly defined area, within a closed chain (plant) can be monitored (manufacturing process and inspection results).