Implementing an ISO 9001 Quality Management System

By implementing an effective quality management system like ISO 9001 into your organisation, you are effectively laying a solid foundation for improving your organisation’s productivity and profit. Quality management systems (QMS) allow you to focus on the key areas in your organisation, be in charge of quality control and improve efficiency.

ISO 9001 is the most popular quality management system used around the globe. It is the most credible quality management system you can have. Many organisations will require the certification as a requisite to doing business. But why is it so popular? Why should you integrate it into your organisation? Let’s take a look.

Benefits of an ISO Quality Management System:

  • Improved chance of winning contracts/clients/work – having the credibility of ISO 9001 certification improves your reputation.
  • Higher customer satisfaction – requires that you have a feedback system in place which will help you understand customer’s needs, identify areas of improvement, and reduce wasted resources.
  • Reduced product or service problems – by highlighting areas of improvement you can correct them and implement a system to prevent them from reoccurring.
  • Better management – ISO9001 requires you to monitor your key quality performance indicators, therefore highlighting areas which need corrective action, as well as demonstrating continual improvement.
  • Better supplier relationships – organisations with ISO 9001 have greater credibility through their reputation and will provide your suppliers with greater confidence in what you do. Ongoing reviews with your suppliers improve your relationship with them and also increases confidence within your organisation and your client base.
  • Increased consistency in best practices – by complying with the standard you are providing consistency and ensuring processes within your organisation are common, understood and following best practice.
  • Lower costs – ISO 9001 can lower your insurance premium, and continually improving processes could ultimately reduce your risks.
  • Streamlines processes – to stay compliant with the standard you will need to demonstrate regular document, process and management reviews are taking place.
  • Continuous improvement – the standard is built around continuous improvement and having a solid foundation to work from gives you an increased chance at seeing improvements year on year.
  • Enhancing employee satisfaction and job security – this leads us into our second area of benefits.

Benefits of ISO Quality Management System for Employees:

  • Boost’s staff performance and productivity – ISO 9001 emphasises creating a consistent and repeatable process that will, in turn, maximise the likelihood of preferable outcomes created by that process.
  • Offers clarity on your organisation’s processes – by giving them insight into how the company is run and how its procedures can be improved upon.
  • Reduces inefficiencies and improves workflows –  by highlighting areas where improvements can be made and then streamline the best workflows.
  • Increases employee engagement – the standard discusses how leaders should encourage employee participation in the processes, ISO 9001 will help you build a culture based around process improvement.

ISO 9001 Requirements

So what requirements are needed to get certified for ISO 9001? How do you start the certification process?

ISO 9001 requirements provide a set of standard mandatory elements that will guide you in the implementation of your QMS. The requirements are designed to be applicable to any organisation in any industry – both production and service-based.

To become certified (and to stay compliant), the requirements of ISO 9001 are broadly separated into sections, called. Five of these contain mandatory requirements for a QMS:

Quality Management System

  • Quality manual
  • Control of documents
  • Control of records

Management Responsibility

  • Customer commitment and focus
  • Quality Policy
  • Quality Objectives

Resource Management

  • Records of training, skills, experience, and qualifications
  • Records about customer property
  • Production/service provision change control records
  • Record of conformity of product/service with acceptable criteria
  • Record of nonconforming outputs

Product Realisation (excluding the design requirements if your company does not do design work)

  • Characteristics of the product to be produced and service to be provided
  • Product/service requirements review records
  • Record about design and development inputs and outputs
  • Records of design and development control and outputs
  • Monitoring and measuring equipment calibration records
  • Design and development changes records

Measurement, Analysis and Improvement

  • Monitoring measurements results
  • Internal audit program
  • Results of internal audits
  • Results of management review
  • Results of corrective actions

This might seem like a lot of information. Thankfully, there are ISO management software tools available to help you manage all of the documents, actions, deadlines, and even allow you to share information and assign responsibilities across your organisation. The ISO management software provided by Activ simplifies this process for you – securely storing your documents, introducing electronic workflow to simplify key processes, prompting you when action is required, and providing advice on all areas of the process including how to stay compliant.

Activ ISO Management Software

An effective quality management system has many parts that work smoothly together. At its core are document control and management. Then, you need a set of tools to efficiently manage specific activities such as supplier assessment, customer feedback, complaints and improvement ideas, audits, incidents, HR, and company assets.

Activ has modules to simplify and improve all aspects of your ISO management processes. Working seamlessly together, Activ’s modules give you the power to controlcomply and improve your management system

Book a demo today!