What is ISO 9001?
Published and overseen by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), the ISO 9000 standard is a collection of management principles designed to ensure that an organization's quality management systems meet the needs of customers, staff and other key stakeholders. Within this structure, ISO 9001 concerns the requirements those companies have to fulfil if they want to successfully meet the standard.
Hatton Parkinson Associates specialise in helping businesses to achieve registration to ISO 9001:2008 (the latest version of the standard). Building on your existing management structures, we help you create easy to implement and simple to use systems to ensure you achieve compliance.
The benefits of ISO 9001
ISO 9001 is one of the most widely adopted management standards in the world, used globally in over one million organizations. Because ISO 9001 has to be independently certified, it carries a great deal of weight both within an organization itself and outwardly to its customers and the marketplace at large.
Many organizations have testified to the financial benefits brought about by successful implementation of ISO 9001, while it is also widely observed that meeting the requirements of the standard have helped companies achieve superior operational performance.
The most common observations made by our own clients are that ISO 9001 has helped them to "open doors that would otherwise remain closed" and made their business "easier to manage and less prone to making mistakes. This saves money and helps provide a better service to customers".
Elements of the ISO 9001 standard
To fulfil the elements of ISO 9001, your organization must:
- Demonstrate its ability to consistently provide products and services that meet customer and applicable statutory and regulatory requirements
- Enhance customer satisfaction through the effective application of the standard, including commitment to the continual improvement of the system and applicable regulations
All requirements of ISO 9001 are designed to apply to all organizations, regardless of industry sector, size of business and the nature of products and services provided.
Achieving ISO 9001 certification
To register for ISO 9001, an organization must have implemented and documented an independently audited quality management system. For the issued ISO 9001 certificate to be of any value, the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) must accredit the assessment body.
Only assessment bodies accredited by UKAS can include the "tick and crown" symbol in their logo. You may be offered unaccredited certification - or even ISO 9001 certification accredited by bodies other than UKAS. Often such services promise very attractive prices for 'fast track' certification, however it is possible that these types of certificates may not be acceptable to your customers.