Why ISO9001:2015 Is Important
Quality is a word that is thrown around a lot, used as a buzz word, added to brand slogans, but can mean a variety of things to different people and organizations. With quality in mind, a company needs to have a reference of measure to define what their quality is and how it is measured and managed. Enter the ISO9001:2015 certification standard for a quality management system.
Over the last two decades the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) has continued to refine the ISO9001 standard to meet the growing demands and evolution of the global economy as more organizations and countries focus on improvement. In 2015 the ISO standard was updated with a new revision focusing on the changing dynamics of the global economy.
What changed with the 2015 revision:
- The new management system follows the same high level structure as other ISO standards that allows corporations with multiple management systems to stay better aligned
- The new revision gives more prominence and focus to risk-based thinking
- Puts greater emphasis on leadership engagement
- Addresses organizational risks and opportunities in a structured manner
- Simplifies the language and common terms used for easier use for organizations using multiple management systems for environment, health, safety, and business continuity
- Addresses Supply Chain Management more effectively
- The standard has become more user-friendly for service and knowledge-based organizations
What makes this significant is that now the standard is more broadly focused and allows more organizations to seek standardization. The original intent of ISO9001 was a standard quality management system focused on customer demands and regulations. Most would associate that with a manufacturing company or organization, but the new standard is more general so that non-manufacturing entities can use the standard to define how they react to the evolution of their customer demands and any changing regulations both local and abroad.
ISO9001:2015 helps frame process and structure
For a new or growing organization, one question that comes up frequently is if they should seek certification to ISO standards. The answer really depends on their long-term intention and focus. While they can follow the standard within their organization to better the organization as a whole, they can’t use the certification as an outward measure of their quality system and how it positively effects their products and/or services.
The simple answer of why ISO9001:2015 is important is that it will give a structured focus to a business or organization. Part of the certification process is to not only show how your structure is defined with metrics based around customer demands and regulations, but also to show examples of the defined structure applied to practice and policy in the organization. While talking the talk is part of a good sales pitch, walking the walk shows that your organization has a dedicated focus to provide top-level service and products to their customers with a continued dedication to good corporate citizenship.
Many organizations are still ISO9001 certified to the 2008 standard release, but SEA-LECT Plastics is certificated to the 2015 revision. The new standard was released in September 2015, and allows us a 3-year period in which to be re-certified from the original August, 2017 certification date.