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Which business would benefit from ISO 9001 Certification?

It is amazing how many different types of businesses have implemented ISO 9001, but there still seems to be some uncertainty as to if this ISO Certification applies to all types of businesses.

Just by way of background and context, the ISO 9001 Certification is the International Standard for Quality Management Systems.  Let’s not confuse this with Quality Assurance (people in white coats and clipboards checking each and every product of the production line) however QA is a vital function for any production company and will form part of your Quality Management System.  Quality Management Systems (QMS) will be all the policies, processes, operating procedures and records that reflect how your business operates within its desired market.  A good ISO Consultant will be able to direct you through the process of developing your Quality Management System in order that it meets the requirements of the ISO 9001:2015 Standard and your Customers requirements.

So if the QMS is the polices, processes and essentially, your operating recipe for success, does it not stand to reason that a QMS and therefore ISO 9001 Certification would apply to each and every business?  In the early days of ISO 9001 Certification this was the domain of the large Manufacturing Companies.  Largely as their customers wanted some independent level of assurance that the products they were receiving achieved the quality standard requested by the customers.

Time has moved dramatically since then and we live in an information based service economy and in many instances the “product” is either a physical product, such as a car or tool as well as services, such as repairs, maintenance, call handling or pieces of information, as in flight details etc.  Much of this is not “produced or manufactured” however there still remains the need to ensure we as providers of products and services deliver what the customer requests.

In the years that we have been assisting companies achieve ISO 9001 Certification, we have worked with more than 80% service based businesses.  So business requirements for the standard has moved into the service and information economies.

A look at the introduction for the new standard clearly describes the requirements and reasons for ISO implementation and certification.

“The adoption of a quality management system is a strategic decision for an organization that can help to improve its overall performance and provide a sound basis for sustainable development initiatives.

The potential benefits to an organization of implementing a quality management system based on this

International Standard are:

  1. the ability to consistently provide products and services that meet customer and applicable statutory and regulatory requirements;
  2. facilitating opportunities to enhance customer satisfaction;
  3. addressing risks and opportunities associated with its context and objectives;
  4. the ability to demonstrate conformity to specified quality management system requirements”

In the years that we at Apliso have been assisting companies to implement ISO 9001, we have worked with large international companies with operating divisions and branches in many countries, to smaller local companies with branches in a number of cities across South Africa, and finally to the majority of our customers being small to medium size companies operating in one location.  Our smallest client has a small team of 4 staff right up to companies with many thousand staff members.  The types of businesses range from Accounting Services to Call Centers to Intellectual Property Protection, to Printing, to Risk Management, to Mining, to Shipping, to Outsourcing to Security and everything in between.  The reasons for implementation and certification are fundamentally the same:

  • Delivery of a consistent quality product and service
  • Differentiate ourselves from our competitors
  • Meet local and international legal requirements
  • Be able to compete on the international business stage (interestingly ISO 9001 Certification is far more entrenched as a business requirement or standard internationally than in South Africa)
  • Drive efficiency and continual improvement in your business

The answer to the question is simply – each and every business, not matter how big or small, local or international who is serious about building and retaining a successful business will benefit from the implementation of the ISO Quality Management System Standard.

If you need help in implementing an effective ISO Based Management System such as ISO 9001 (Quality Management), ISO 14001 (Environment Management), OHSAS 18001 (Health and Safety Management), ISO 27001 (Information Security Management) or ISO 22000 (Food Safety Management) why not email info@apliso.com or subscribe to www.isostandards.co.za