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January 15 2014

How Can You Get the Most from Your ISO ISO 9000 Certification?

ISO 9000 certification - What is an ISO 9001 certification? Most people believe that its an exercise in compiling documents for the auditor to see so that a certification will be issued. This is not true. Those of us who have worked with ISO for a number of years remember earlier versions of the ISO standard which needed excessive documentation with little focus on real outcome. Many business owners and managers considered this just a basic overhead expenditure to the company with no measurable benefit.

ISO 9000 certification - However, revisions were recently made to the ISO standard. This time, the focus is more on improving business processes rather than on compiling documentation for the auditor. The result is that achievements of certified companies these days have a great effect and a lot of shareholders, employees, clients and even the top management see this. Efforts to improve both the customer and business needs of a company have been made in this new "Process Approach".

Since the year 2000, we have helped lots of businesses attain ISO 9001 certification every year. To attain great outcome from the investment, there are three basic rules implemented by our consultants:

Companies that implement ISO for the initial time make it very complex and this is a common mistake. This mistake can result in unnecessary records, procedures and job training. You see people who implement the system would rather be "safe than sorry" since they truly do not know what an auditor would look for. Besides not adding to the value of the business, this will also increase the current ISO certification expense.

Instead, a conscious effort should be made to keep the number of documents to a minimum and concentrate on implementing those specifically required by the business or needed by the standard.

Staying focused on improving the processes of the company is the second guideline as this can also improve performance for both the business and the client. Make sure that you implement everything to support the company's operations and the requirements of the customers. Because of the general language in the ISO standard, businesses can specifically tailor their QMS to meet their unique requirements while still complying with the intention of the certification.

Your company must benefit from the outcome of working with a specific requirement that is aligned with your management approach.

If you implement something, make sure that your reason is not merely so that you can show the auditor. You must apply guidelines one and two if during a discussion about an ISO requirement you say that you have implemented something to show the auditor. You can develop and implement a system which will suit and add value to your company because ISO requirements are flexible. You must concentrate on adding value to your company and simplifying your ISO processes and documents. Your auditor would surely be satisfied if you do so.

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