No company can hope to operate without complying with certain standards. Hence, the top companies never fail to implement the Quality Management System known as QMS. It is done with the aid of ISO 9001:2015. Obtaining the ISO 9001 certification has become a necessity for most companies hoping to make a difference in their respective areas of work. However, it is also necessary to remain aware of the term and understand the nuances involved before going on to seek the standard accreditation.
Remember that the International Organization for Standardization or ISO is available for both individuals as well as organizations. However, the procedures and indeed the implications vary considerably. It is of paramount importance for companies to meet the criteria set by ISO 9001:2015 standard by going through the required process meticulously. It is also essential to have a certification body audit conducted by an approved external agency to check whether all the requirements have been met.
Complying with the standards does not only help a company to meet the requirements of the industry but also ensures increased customer satisfaction.
The companies usually decide to go through the procedure based on their Quality Management System (QMS). The company must utilize the processes as per the requirement of the ISO 9001 standard. The approaches must not deviate from the accepted ones either. An ISO 9001 Audit takes place in front of the auditors also known as registrars. The certificate is given once the auditors approve of the changes made in the structure, operations of the company on the basis of the ISO 9001 Certification requirements.
Before the implementation of the procedure by the companies, it is imperative to maintain the QMS system without any glitches for at least a specific period. The management of the certified companies needs to conduct regular internal audits thereafter and review the entire system at least once. A team of certified auditors or ISO 9001 Consultants representing a certified body will then visit to assess the existing system and compare its standards vis-à-vis ISO 9001 Certification requirements.
It is up to the experienced team to make the final decision thereafter. The certificate will be issued by the authorities stating that all the requirements for obtaining an ISO 9001 Certification have been made without any exception. The concerned company will henceforth be known as an ISO 9001 certified company.
A systematic review of the QMS process and comparison of each part of the system with the documented details as well as standards required is known as a QMS Audit. Such audits become imperative to establish that the planned process of meeting the standards is being followed by the company. The success rate for implantation of the QMS is also assessed by professionals in the course of the audits.
There are three distinct types of Audits conducted by the company with the classification being decided on the party asking for such an audit. The first-party or an internal audit is organized by the organization itself with a team of experienced auditors being employed by the company to do the needful. However, an existing customer of the company may not be satisfied with the products/services received and choose to hire an experienced auditor to do the audit. The third-party audit refers to the hiring of an external team of auditors hired by the company to examine the ISO 9001 Certification Process followed by the concerned company and check each part of the implemented processes thereby assessing whether the existing system complies with the ISO 9001 standard or not. The auditors also provide the required certification endorsing that the Quality Management System processes have been met and are following the required standards.
The actual expenses for ISO 9001 certification are quite varied and quite impossible to predict right away. This is caused due to dissimilarities between organizations with no two companies being identical in their operations. The QMS needs to be created as per the individual requirements of each company with the objectives being considered as well. Smaller companies have simpler needs with medium to big companies making use of complex processes that are too numerous to have the cost of QMS being estimated accurately. However, the management of each company will be well prepared to consider the expenses for training for ISO 9001 standards, expenses incurred for hiring external auditors, the time required to educate the concerned employees, and certification costs. Last but not the least, the expense for maintenance of the QMS should be accounted for as well.
This is similar to estimating the costs for obtaining the certification. Again, the estimated time will differ from company to company. An organization that uses multiple processes consisting of intricate methods and requiring skilled staff will take much longer to reach the required level of standard as well a company that needs to have the documentation complete and ready for reference. However, companies that enjoy employee strength will have no trouble meeting all requirements at the earliest.
Again, no company should aspire to get the certification within days. This is an unrealistic expectation that would not be fulfilled ever. It is important to remember that the experts need to use the system for a certain period after the processes are implemented to be convinced. Even the smallest company needs to wait for at least three months before being audited thus becoming eligible to be certified.
The certification is provided by certain bodies who have been endorsed with the task of performing Audits as well as provide the required certification once the Audits are successful. It is important to get in touch with an accredited body for the certification for it is going to be acceptable by customers and competitors as well as partners around the nation as well as across the globe. The quality of the company is verified thus earning it an enviable reputation.
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