Released in September 2015, the fifth edition of the quality management system standard ISO 9001: 2015 is the latest version of one of ISO’s most commonly accepted standards. In order to be able to demonstrate that they are compliant with the requirements of the ISO 9001 standard, more than 1 million organisations both large and small have become certified to the new updated standard.
The main objective of this new standard is to make it so that the requirements are more in line and appropriate for smaller companies, yet larger companies are also looking to increase the use of ISO 9001 as a supply management tool. Either way, there are a whole host of reasons business owners should consider how important it is to certify to the new standard and maintain that level of certification.
Maintaining your certification
Having achieved your ISO 9001:2015 certification it is important for you and your business that you maintain it – the changes to the standard have been made to help companies achieve the current industry requirements.
There are a number of ways in which you as a company can do this:
- Make sure that you are kept appraised of the latest developments in the ISO 9001 series (and any other management systems that may be relevant to your company) with regular updates to ensure that you always have the most up to date information to hand.
- Make sure that you keep your skills and those of your staff relevant by attending any appropriate training courses.
- Use the services of a consultancy company who specialise in certification, not only will they be able to support you with any queries that you may have. They will also be able to assist you with business reviews to ensure you are fully compliant and competitive. They will also be able to assist you with any areas that may need improving on to ensure that your company maintains its certified status.
As with all previous versions of the ISO 9001 standard, continuous improvement is an important feature that should be applied to your business practises. It is important to carry out internal audits on a regular basis within the company to assess whether you are still meeting all the requirements of the ISO 9001:2015 standard. Catching any problems early will of course make it easier for you to put measures in place to rectify the issues. Management review should also play a key role in looking at how you can plan and implement ways of improving both key indictors within the business and also development initiatives.
Customer feedback will of course remain an invaluable tool in this respect, allowing you as a company to measure how customers feel about your products and services and also about the company, showing you where there is perceived need for improvement.
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If you’re in need of assistance with any aspect of ISO certification, here at Synergos we’d be delighted to help. Whether you have questions about the initial certification, or are looking for advice and support pertaining to maintenance of the standard, simply call 01484 817 444 or email email@example.com and we’ll be happy to talk it over with you.