ISO 9000 – Quality management
The ISO 9000 family addresses various aspects of quality management and contains some of ISO’s best known standards. The standards provide guidance and tools for companies and organizations who want to ensure that their products and services consistently meet customer’s requirements, and that quality is consistently improved.
ISO 9001:2015 sets out the criteria for a quality management system and is the only standard in the family that can be certified to (although this is not a requirement). It can be used by any organization, large or small, regardless of its field of activity. In fact, there are over one million companies and organizations in over 170 countries certified to ISO 9001.
This standard is based on a number of quality management principles including a strong customer focus, the motivation and implication of top management, the process approach and continual improvement. Using ISO 9001:2015 helps ensure that customers get consistent, good quality products and services, which in turn brings many business benefits.
ISO has a range of standards for quality management systems that are based on ISO 9001 and adapted to specific sectors and industries. These include:
ISO/TS 29001 – Petroleum, petrochemical & natural gas industries
ISO 13485 – Medical devices
ISO/IEC 90003 – Software engineering
ISO 17582 – Electoral organizations at all levels of government
ISO 18091 – Local government.
Certification to ISO 9001:2015
Checking that the system works is a vital part of ISO 9001:2015. It is recommended that an organization performs internal audits to check how its quality management system is working. An organization may decide to invite an independent certification body to verify that it is in conformity to the standard, but there is no requirement for this. Alternatively, it might invite its clients to audit the quality system for themselves.
What is ISO 9001?
ISO 9001 is one of the standards within the range of ISO 9000 standards. QQCert Registrars Ltd is a IQAAS Accredited Certification Body, so before you consider getting started, talk to us to find out how we can help you understand the requirements for achieving ISO 9001 Accredited Certification.
Meeting the requirements of this standard will provide quality management systems that will be of real benefit to your organisation to help manage your business effectively and put in place best practice methodology.
ISO 9001 Certification will give your organisation the quality systems that will provide the foundation to better customer satisfaction, staff motivation and continual improvement.
ISO 9001 certification is suitable for all sizes and types of organisations and is well established around the world as an invaluable Quality Management System standard. It is suitable for organisations in all industry sectors and will help your organisation to improve management processes to compete locally and/or globally.
The process encompasses the entire organisation and requires senior management buy-in, it is not just a function of the Quality Department. To achieve ISO 9001 certification your organisation needs to demonstrate that it can meet the regulatory requirements and apply the system effectively to be of real benefit to your customers.
As an ISO 9001 certified organisation you will have implemented Quality Management System requirements for all areas of the business, including:
ISO Certification & IQAAS Accreditation
When you are satisfied that your organisation is working within the guidelines of the Quality Management System, it is time to call in an ISO 9001 Certification Body. The audit can be conducted by a number of different Certification Bodies, however it is important to note that not all ISO 9001 auditing organisations are IQAAS Accredited.
QQCert Registrars Ltd is a IQAAS Accredited Certification Body. Talk to us to find out how we can help you understand the requirements for achieving ISO 9001 Accredited Certification.
Achieving Certification to ISO 9001 is the first step of a process of continual improvement that will provide your organisation with the necessary management tools to improve working practices throughout the entire organisation.
Benefits of ISO 9001
ISO 9001 Certification will provide maximum benefit to your organisation if it approaches ISO 9001 implementation in a practical way. This will ensure that the Quality Management Systems that are adopted, work to improve the business and are not just a set of procedures that your employees will find hard to manage.
By adopting an approach that starts out to implement more efficient working practices and focuses on the business objectives of the organisation, you will achieve a system that will help and support your staff, and improve your levels of customer satisfaction.
Whether you use an external assessor or allocate an internal resource to carry out the initial assessments, you will need to ensure that they have buy-in from senior management, so that all areas of the organisation are aware of the importance of the ISO 9001 Certification process.
ISO 9001 Certification is not just suitable for large organisations but also small businesses that will benefit from adopting efficient Quality Management Systems that will save time and cost, improve efficiency and ultimately improve customer relationships.
Some of the benefits to your organisation:
- Provides senior management with an efficient management process
- Sets out areas of responsibility across the organisation
- Mandatory if you want to tender for some public sector work
- Communicates a positive message to staff and customers
- Identifies and encourages more efficient and time saving processes
- Highlights deficiencies
- Reduces your costs
- Provides continuous assessment and improvement
- Marketing opportunities
Some of the benefits to your customers:
- Improved quality and service
- Delivery on time
- Right first time attitude
- Fewer returned products and complaints
- Independent audit demonstrates commitment to quality.
Key Principles in Standard Development
1. ISO standards respond to a need in the market
ISO does not decide when to develop a new standard, but responds to a request from industry or other stakeholders such as consumer groups. Typically, an industry sector or group communicates the need for a standard to its national member who then contacts ISO.
2. ISO standards are based on global expert opinion
ISO standards are developed by groups of experts from all over the world, that are part of larger groups called technical committees. These experts negotiate all aspects of the standard, including its scope, key definitions and content.
3. ISO standards are developed through a multi-stakeholder process
The technical committees are made up of experts from the relevant industry, but also from consumer associations, academia, NGOs and government. Read more about who develops ISO standards.
4. ISO standards are based on a consensus
Developing ISO standards is a consensus-based approach and comments from all stakeholders are taken into account.