The first thing to remember is that standards usually start at the country level. Most countries have their own national standards-making bodies, and most of these are members of ISO following these roles:
- Publish and write own national standards
- Represent country in regional and international standard-setting
- Sell copies of standards
- Some also offer conformity assessment services such as accreditation, certification or other commercial activities
The important distinction between standards and legislation is that standards are voluntary, whereas legislation is mandatory. When regulatory authorities use standards as a basis for legislation, only then do they become mandatory, and then only within the jurisdiction covered by the legislation. Regulatory authorities decide themselves whether to use Standards to support their technical regulations. Once this happens, there are various ways of referring to the legal text.
ISO Certification is a seal of approval from a 3rd party that an organization runs w.r.t. the internationally recognised ISO management systems. The certification can be used to tender for business as a proof of an organization’s credibility but also to install confidence in the potential client that you will keep your promises.
- Internal operational efficiency : Lower production costs cause of fewer nonconforming products, less rework, lower rejection rates, streamlined processes and fewer mistakes
- Access to new markets : Some markets require ISO Certification, some markets favour organizations with ISO Certification
- Customer request : Many organizations are asked by a customer to obtain certification as a requirement to continue or to start doing business with them.
- Prepare your organization
- Gap Analysis
- Implementation Plan
- Training of all team members
- Documentation and actual implementation
- Modification in existing documentation
- Use and Improve your Management System
- Internal Audits and actions on improvement opportunities
- Management Reviews
- Application for ISO Certification
- Certification Audits and action on improvement opportunities
- ISO Certification
Most organizations can expect good time for total implementation, but it lot depends on
- Management commitment and leadership
- What your organization currently has in place
- How quickly you want to become certified
- Internal staff, their knowledge, skills, availability and time commitment
The cost of ISO Certification will vary depending on the size and complexity of your organization and on whether you already have some elements of a respective management system in place.
ISO Certification Cost in 3 parts
- Hiring a Certification Body - The Certification audit is performed by a Certification Body and the cost will depend on how large and how intricate your organization is. Certification Body will charge you depending on how much time they spend auditing your organization by days. There will be travel costs if the Certification Body is not local and there are administrative and accreditation fees as well.
- Internal Cost - The time your employees will need to spend building and implementing the system. There are certain cost like stationary requirement and adequacy of necessary resources.
- Outside help - This is either consultant fees or the purchasing of tools to help you with the project or calibration of your own equipments. You can save quite a bit of money if you do not use a consultant.
In these times of tight budgets and cost saving measures, an ISO Consultant is a luxury that many companies have decided to do without. But how can a Department Managers be responsible for implementing ISO standard, if they have not done it before?
Auditing is a required element of the ISO Standards. It is the proof that the system you have implemented is fit for purpose and continually improving. It is the regular check that you are managing the system consistently.
The guidance that you will receive at the internal review stage will help you to effectively manage your management systems and remain compliant to the relevant standard. The auditor will help you to identify which aspects of the management system require improvement; this will provide you with the ability to develop and enhance the management system through a set of focused action points in a step by step approach.
Upgradation of ISO Standard is obvious in order to improve performance of respective management system. Core objective behind upgradation of requirements of ISO Standard is that the organization interested to implement this system should get benefits on continual basis.
Stagnancy in any business is not ultimate goal of the Top Management. Every time, whenever standard is revised and published with latest version, it brings change in operational mechanism so that all functions come under control and prevent losses.
Therefore, upgradation of respective management system is always advisable.