The ISO 9001 standard is one of a suite of ISO standards that are trusted by every industry sector to provide a globally recognised quality management system (QMS).
Whether you are in manufacturing, construction, automotive, aerospace, transport, local authority, charity or the service sector, ISO 9001 demonstrates to your customers that you have a quality management system in place that will consistently deliver to recognised standards.
Maintaining ISO 9001 certification or any other ISO standard will require regular audits to maintain and continuously improve your quality management systems. This gives your customers confidence that the quality of your products or services will be consistent and maintained to a high level to give them the best customer experience.
Benefits to your business
It is not only your customers who will benefit when you achieve ISO 9001 certification.
You can expect to increase profits by reducing waste and being more efficient and productive. Implementing effective management systems will improve employee relations and minimise mistakes. Better internal communications between all areas of the business will help to provide better reporting and delivery to customers.
Winning new business and retention of existing customers will be easier to achieve. Some of your customers or potential customers at home and abroad may even require certification before working with you.
If established correctly, the QMS should be unique to your business and implemented across your organisation to provide all the benefits without being over complicated and getting bogged down in paperwork. It should also have the backing of top management to drive the changes and focus on the benefits.
ISO 9001 certification bodies
The success of ISO standards is down to the process of continuous improvement and checking, or auditing, that is carried out to monitor management systems. This provides proof to your customers that your business has processes in place and is maintaining them to the recognised standard.
The certification body you choose to carry out audits must not have any connection with your consultant or trainers who have helped set up your QMS. This ensures a completely impartial review of your documentation to maintain the integrity of your certification.
Choosing a UKAS accredited certification body means they have been assessed against internationally recognised standards to ensure competence, performance and impartiality.
The United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) is the only national accreditation body recognised by government. Achieving UKAS accredited certification means your customers do not have to carry out multiple assessments before they can start trading with you which will help you to open new markets for your business.
The stages to achieve certification include:
- Preparation for an audit. Carried out internally or by a consultant.
- Stage 1 audit to review documented management system, ideally by a UKAS accredited certification body.
- Stage 2 audit to check any corrections from the first audit have been actioned.
- Certificate decision is made once any non-conformities have been addressed.
- Issue of certificate.
- Ongoing surveillance audits.
To take your business to the next level and achieve a globally recognised certification, please visit http://www.aeciso.com