ISO 9000 consultants, ISO 9001: 2015 consultants -Quality Management System

Introduction

The ISO 9000 family of standards relate to quality management systems and are designed to help organizations ensure they meet the needs of customers and other stakeholders. The standards are published by ISO, the International Organization for Standardization and are available through National standards bodies.

ISO 9000 deals with the fundamentals of quality management systems, including the eight management principles on which the family of standards is based. ISO 9001 deals with the requirements that organizations wishing to meet the standard have to meet.

Independent confirmation that organizations meet the requirements of ISO 9001 may be obtained from third party certification bodies. Over a million organizations worldwide are independently certified making ISO 9001 one of the most widely used management tools in the world today.

ISO 9001 specifies the basic requirements for a quality management system (QMS) that an organization must fulfil to demonstrate its ability to consistently provide products (which include services) that enhance customer satisfaction and meet applicable statutory and regulatory requirements.

The standard can be used for certification/registration and contractual purposes by organizations seeking recognition of their quality management system. ISO 9001 has been organized in a user-friendly format with terms that are easily recognized by all business sectors.

Overview

The ISO 9000 family of standards represents an international consensus on good quality management practices. It consists of standards and guidelines relating to quality management systems and related supporting standards.

The newly published ISO 9001:2015 is the standard that provides a set of standardized requirements for a quality management system, regardless of what the organization activity is, its size, its location or whether it is in the private, or public sector. It is the only standard in the family against which organizations can be certified – although certification is not a mandatory, certification provides an independent opinion of the effectiveness.

It helps organizations to improve customer satisfaction and to continually improve its management system through internal audits and management reviews.

The ISO 9001 series of standards consist of:

  • ISO 9000 – Fundamentals and Vocabulary: this introduces the user to the concepts behind the management systems and specifies the terminology used.
  • ISO 9001 – Requirements: this sets out the criteria you will need to meet if you wish to operate in accordance with the standard and gain certification.
  • ISO 9004 – Guidelines for performance improvement: based upon the eight quality management principles, these are designed to be used by senior management as a framework to guide their organizations towards improved performance by considering the needs of all interested parties, not just customers.

The diagram alongside (click image to enlarge) represents the basic methodology for the implementation of a Quality Management System in an organisation based on ISO 9001.

Is ISO 9001 relevant to your organization?

ISO 9001 is suitable for all organizations looking to improve the way it is operated and managed, regardless of what sector. However, ISO 9001 is designed to be implemented throughout the organization rather than at particular activities within a department or division.

The ISO standards are structured to be integrated into any organization's existing management system with the goal of meeting and exceeding customers’ expectations. In addition, ISO 9001 is closely aligned to other management standards such as ISO 14001 (Environmental), ISO 27001 (Information Security), ISO 20000 (IT Service Management) and OHSAS 18001 (Occupational Health and Safety).

Global adoption

Following the ISO Survey of Certifications in 2009, there are now over 1 million certificates in issue for ISO 9001. An 8% increase in certification in 2009, compared with the 3% increase in 2008 confirms the importance and adoption of ISO 9001 in the global supply chains as the pioneering model on which management system standards have been built.

As of December 2009, the total number of ISO 9001 certificates issued stands at 1,064,785 issued across 178 countries around the world

Benefits

  • Implementing a Quality Management System will motivate staff by defining quality terminology, processes their key roles and responsibilities.
  • Staff will gain more quality knowledge and be better trained due to documented policies and procedures
  • Internal quality processes will improve productivity and efficiency
  • Cost savings can be made through improved efficiency and productivity, as product or service deficiencies will be highlighted.
  • Improvements can be developed, resulting in less waste, inappropriate or rejected work and fewer complaints
  • Communication, resource planning and quality administration continually improve
  • Increasing customer expectations and confidence can be achieved through improve productivity, efficiency and communication
  • Implementing continual quality improvement initiatives will improve the organizations’ quality management systems
  • ISO certification can be a positive marketing tool in a competitive marketplace
  • Enables quality measurement

Auditing

Two types of auditing are required to become registered to the standard: auditing by an external certification body (external audit) and audits by internal staff trained for this process (internal audits). The aim is a continual process of review and assessment, to verify that the system is working as it's supposed to, find out where it can improve and to correct or prevent problems identified. It is considered healthier for internal auditors to audit outside their usual management line, so as to bring a degree of independence to their judgements.

Organizations and enterprises register ISO 9001: 2015 training courses or consulting  and guidance ISO 9001: 2015 - Quality management system, please contact:

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