FAQ: What Is ISO 9001?
ISO 9001 was published in 1987 by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and since then has evolved into the world’s most trusted and used management tool. ISO, headquartered in Amsterdam, is composed of the national standards bodies of more than 160 participating countries.
ISO 9001 is the international standard that specifies requirements for a quality management system (QMS). One testament to its popularity and enduring effectiveness: more than 1 million organizations around the world are currently certified to ISO 9001 standards.
But what does ISO 9001 mean for businesses? Let’s take a closer look:
• ISO 9001 standard is a basic set of principles that define best practices for efficient processes and competent people to consistently deliver a good product or service.
• ISO 9001 provides guidance and systemic tools for companies and organizations to ensure their goods and services consistently meet customer needs and expectations for quality.
• ISO 9001 boosts efficiency, optimises quality, improves customer satisfaction, elevates staff motivation and allows for sustainable performance improvement.
• ISO 9001 framework can be applied to virtually any service or manufacturing process.
Professional business management consultants who implement the ISO 9001 standard are continually providing feedback to ISO’s technical committees and advisory groups – this allows the standard to be regularly reviewed and improved, including the current iteration launched September 2015.
Current Standard – ISO 9001:2015
ISO/TC 176 is the committee officially responsible for ISO 9001 review, development and improvement. In 2012, the committee celebrated 25 years of implementing ISO 9001 and embarked on an ambitious effort to thoroughly review and improve their QSM model. This effort included integrating the newest, most effective QSM principles developed since ISO 9001’s debut.
After intensive work, the updated standard was published on 23 September 2015 as “ISO 9001:2015.” While much of the original framework remains the same, the new core terms allow easier, more effective integration with other international management systems standards. ISO 9001:2015 is applicable to any company or organization, large or small, regardless of its field of activity.
ISO 9001:2015 is less prescriptive and puts a greater focus on performance. This is possible because the update combines the process approach with risk-based analysis, to create a more relevant standardization protocol. ISO 9001:2015 also incorporates the “Plan-Do-Check-Act Cycle” (PDCA) in all organizational contexts and levels. PDCA is integral to evaluating, controlling and improving businesses processes.
The core mission of ISO 9001:2015 remains unchanged: help organizations organize processes, improve efficiency and sustain excellence and further improvement. ISO 9001:2015 certification leads to high-quality products and services, which in turn supports revenue boost.
The International Accreditation Forum (IAF) and the ISO Committee on Conformity Assessment (CASCO) are initiating there a three-year transition period to completely move on from ISO 9001 to ISO 9001:2015. But why wait? All organizations currently certified to the original ISO 9001 standard are encouraged to transition as soon as possible to ISO 9001:2015, in order to enjoy the full benefits of standardization.
Benefits of ISO 9001:2015
QMS integration using ISO 9001:2015 delivers six major benefits to your organization:
1. Better process integration allows you to identify areas for efficiency improvements for resource use, creating cost savings.
2. Enable support for additional fiscal benefits through optimisation, including positive effects on investment, market share, sales growth, and competitiveness.
3. Optimal employee and management engagement is created by defining roles and responsibilities, which creates an additional excellence feedback loop.
4. Customer satisfaction is greatly improved by your ability to sustain high quality in products and services.
5. You create a continuous improvement culture that becomes an integral part of your organization.
6. Access to more relevant and qualitatively superior information allows you to make better decisions, efficiently negotiate challenges and engage opportunities sooner.
Because ISO 9001:2015 is an international standard and expected of competent organizations, potential partners may resist engaging your organization if you are not certified. ISO 9001 certification boosts your credibility and image within the marketplace.
Getting Started with ISO 9001:2015
Achieving ISO 9001:2015 certification is the first step in a process of continuous improvement and excellence. With certification, you demonstrate professionalism, responsibility, and leadership to your stakeholders.
QICE specializes in QMS consulting for New Zealand manufacturers and product developers. Trust QICE for:
• Complete and up-to-date ISO 9001:2015 certification
• Knowledge leadership for QMS support
• Leading experience in the field
• 24/7 availability
• Defined, affordable costs
Contact us to discuss how QICE can add value and help your organization engineer its most efficient path to greatness.