Is ISO 9001 a Quality Management System?

If you're unfamiliar with the ISO 9000 family of standards, some of the terminology associated with ISO 9001 may seem a little confusing at first. Perhaps you're aware that ISO 9001 is some kind of management tool, but you're not quite clear on the details. You've seen the phrase 'quality management system' come up frequently in articles on this topic - so is ISO 9001 a quality management system?

We can answer that question right now: no, ISO 9001 is not a quality management system. Rather, ISO 9001 is the global standard for quality management systems (often abbreviated to QMS). The concepts are closely linked, but the terms 'ISO 9001' and 'QMS' should not be used interchangeably.

We hope the definitions below will clear up any uncertainty.

 

Quality management system meaning

A quality management system (QMS) is a set of processes that an organisation may adopt in order to maximise the quality of its products / services and ultimately boost customer satisfaction.

The exact content of a QMS can differ radically from one company to the next, but the primary aims of a quality management system should always be to reduce waste and produce consistently high-quality results for the customer.

READ MORE: What is a quality management system?

 

ISO 9001 meaning

ISO 9001 is an international standard for quality management systems. This standard is published by the International Organization for Standardization, also known as ISO.

Once an organisation has implemented a QMS, that organisation can seek ISO 9001 certification to demonstrate the effectiveness of their quality management system. (This can be useful for attracting new business.)

Often, to award a certificate of registration, a third-party certification company is used to independently verify that the QMS fulfils the requirements of ISO 9001.

If you are looking to obtain ISO 9001 certification, ISO Accelerator can help you to get certified quickly. Contact us now to discuss your company's certification requirements.

Getting Certified: How Does It Work?

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Documents required for ISO certification

It is a popular misconception that businesses must document absolutely everything they do in order to obtain ISO 9001 certification. Yes, there is a fair bit of documentation involved, but there's no reason to fear that your office will be buried under tonnes and tonnes of paperwork.

In fact, one of the objectives of ISO 9001:2015 - the most recent version of the ISO 9001 standard for quality management systems - was to streamline the amount and detail of documentation required.

 

Documents required for ISO 9001 certification

There are two sets of documents required for ISO 9001 certification.

The following mandatory documents are needed to obtain ISO 9001 certification and must be updated continuously:

  • Scope of the quality management system (QMS)
  • Quality policy
  • Quality objectives

Additionally, the following records must be retained in order to prove that your QMS meet ISO 9001 requirements:

  • Monitoring and measuring resources
  • Records of staff training, qualifications, experience, etc.
  • Product / service requirement review records
  • Records of design and development inputs, controls, outputs and changes
  • Characteristics of the product / service to be provided
  • Customer property records
  • Product / service provision change control records
  • Product / service release
  • Record of nonconforming outputs
  • Monitoring and measurement results
  • Results of internal audit
  • Resilts of management review
  • Results of corrective actions
  • Criteria for evaluation and selection of suppliers

Different documents may be required if you are looking to achieve ISO 14001 or ISO 27001 certification. Contact ISO Accelerator for more information on these standards.

If you want to achieve ISO certification as quickly as possible, ISO Accelerator can help. Our online certification service eliminates the need for site visits and face-to-face consultations, helping you to save time and cut costs.

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Manufacturing

Quality control is a crucial part of many industries, but none more so than manufacturing. A manufacturing company must have robust systems in place to ensure that their products are of a consistently high quality.

Because manufacturing firms live and die on the quality of the products they make, new companies generally don't wait long to implement a quality management system (QMS) and secure ISO 9001 certification as a mark of their dependability.

 

Why is ISO 9001 certification beneficial for manufacturing companies?

ISO 9001 is the global standard for quality management systems. A company that has achieved ISO 9001 certification can be relied upon to deliver high-quality products and services using efficient, well-defined processes.

In order to meet the criteria for ISO 9001 certification, a manufacturing company must have a suitable quality management system in place. The QMS should:

  • Have a strong customer focus

  • Involve the entire organisation

  • Aim to deliver continual improvement

  • Minimise waste to make all processes as efficient as possible

SEE ALSO: The 8 Principles of Quality Management

Obtaining ISO 9001 certification is a good way to get more business - getting certified proves the quality of your manufacturing processes to potential customers, and many businesses will only consider working with suppliers who hold ISO 9001 certification.

ISO Accelerator can help manufacturing companies to achieve ISO 9001 certification quickly and with minimal hassle. Click here to find out more about our remote ISO certification service.

Get Certified >

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Implementing a quality management system (QMS) is a great way for an organisation to streamline and improve its processes.

Running a business is a very demanding job, and taking the time to formalise the procedures you follow may not seem like a priority. But a properly-implemented QMS will make the whole company more efficient, so you will more than recoup the time you spend on it.

 

3 reasons to implement a quality management system

  1. Get your team working more effectively. A quality management system provides formal answers to the questions of who is responsible for what within your organisation, what goals they should be working towards, and what processes they should be following to get there. This results in more efficient work with better outcomes for the customer.

  2. Boost your customer satisfaction. Customer focus is a key principle of quality management. Implementing a QMS will push you to understand your customers better and refocus your operations towards the goal of fulfilling the customer's needs.

  3. Waste less time and fewer resources. Quality management systems are designed to make all organisational processes as efficient as possible, minimising waste of all kinds - so you'll waste less time, less manpower and less money in your pursuit of maximum customer satisfaction.

READ MORE: The Benefits of a Quality Management System

 

How ISO Accelerator can help

If you wish to implement a quality management system in order to get your business running more efficiently, we at ISO Accelerator can help. Not only will we work with you to develop a management system that suits the needs of your organisation, we will also ensure that your QMS is consistent with the ISO 9001 standard for quality management systems.

Once you have implemented your QMS, we can help you to achieve ISO 9001 certification quickly, with no need for face-to-face consultations. Our remote certification process is fast and cost effective - for more information, see How Does Remote ISO Certification Work?

Contact ISO Accelerator >

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UEFA Euro 2020 is proving to be well worth the extra year we had to wait for it. The tournament is really hotting up now, and if the group stage hadn't already sent the country football mad, England's 2-0 win against Germany last night will surely have done the trick.

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The world

World Accreditation Day takes place on the 9th of June every year. Established by the International Accreditation Forum (IAF) and International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC), this annual event aims to raise awareness of the value of accreditation.

The theme for World Accreditation Day 2021 is 'Accreditation: Supporting the Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)'.

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Sustainable development

In 2015, all UN member states adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. At the core of this resolution were 17 goals that were designed to deliver a better and more sustainable future for all of humanity.

One of those sustainable development goals was as follows:

  • GOAL 9 - Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialisation, and foster innovation.

That last word - innovation - will be critical if we are to continue evolving while also preserving the environment for future generations. Now more than ever, businesses must get creative and devise better, smarter strategies for sustainable growth. The success of the UN's seventeen sustainable development goals depends on it.

 

How we're planning for a sustainable future

We at ISO Accelerator are leaders in innovation for the development of sustainable, independently-accredited certification. As far as we know, we were the very first company in the UK that was specifically set up to offer this service; others have followed our lead, but their existing infrastructure, pricing structures and methods of working means that they simply cannot compete with us.

We consider ourselves a climate emergency company - we help both our clients and the planet by providing truly sustainable certification services. Our remote auditing system has taken 25 auditors off the road; by our estimates, this has already saved 185 metric tonnes of CO2e from being released into the atmosphere.

How Does Our ISO Certification Service Work?

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April 2021 planner

The ISO 9001 standard is a recognised worldwide standard that an organisation can use to help improve its overall performance and to demonstrate its commitment to quality. In order to achieve ISO 9001 certification, a business must first develop and implement a stringent quality management system (QMS). The implementation of a quality management system is often a strategic decision. An effective quality management system can help an organisation to:

  1. demonstrate their ability to consistently provide products and services
  2. enhance customer satisfaction

If the QMS fulfils the requirements of ISO 9001, the company can then obtain independent certification in order to demonstrate this to potential customers.

But is ISO 9001 certification still relevant in the year 2021? Do decision-makers still look for the ISO certificate when seeking companies to do business with, or is it a relic of a different time? With the help of the World Wide Web, we can now find out almost anything about a given company with just a few keystrokes - so is there any reason for businesses to go to the trouble of getting certified in this day and age?

 

Why ISO certification still matters

The truth is that, while the Internet has made information easier to find than ever before, it can still be difficult to spot high-quality businesses. Anyone can set up a website and tell the world that they offer a particular product or service - but ISO 9001 certification demonstrates that your business has customer-focused processes in place and is dedicated to the pursuit of continuous improvement.

SEE ALSO: When Is The Next ISO 9001 Update?

The COVID-19 pandemic has made remote working far more widespread than it was before. In the past, when establishing a business relationship with a new client, supplier or service provider, you might have visited their head office and met key individuals in person; the coronavirus crisis has made that less feasible, so it's more important than ever to have a reliable means of evaluating a company's quality. ISO 9001:2015 certification can help you to achieve that.

If you would like to obtain ISO 9001:2015 certification for your business, ISO Accelerator can help you to get certified quickly while minimising costs. Click here to get started!

How Our Remote ISO Certification Process Works

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There is a certain amount of debate surrounding quality manuals, what exactly they are, and whether a quality manual is actually required. Many people confuse the term 'quality manual' with a quality management system (QMS); this is understandable, because in the past...

  • ISO 9001 talked about a quality manual

  • Companies would often keep a large folder (or folders) containing master copies of their quality procedures, policies, forms, etc. This was sometimes known as the 'quality manual'.

Today, some in the certification industry see quality manuals as unnecessary. At ISO Accelerator, we aim to give our clients clear and simple guidance on this topic - whether or not you require a quality manual depends on the format and structure of your QMS.

ISO Accelerator helps businesses to implement effective quality management systems. As part of each QMS, we do also provide clients with a digital quality manual. However, this quality manual does not itself contain copies of quality procedures, policies, forms, and so on - instead, these are supplied as part of the complete quality management system. The quality manual is simply a document that describes the intent of the QMS and how it operates.

 

Developing a quality management system

Here at ISO Accelerator, we offer a comprehensive ISO 9001 certification service. We will work with you remotely, helping you to develop a quality management system and put it into practice.

Once your QMS has been properly implemented, a remote audit will be conducted to confirm that you are meeting the requirements of your quality management system. You will then be awarded your certificate of ISO 9001 certification.

As a bonus, you will be able to give clients and customers a copy of your quality manual to reassure them that you have processes in place to ensure a quality service.

How Long Does It Take?   Get ISO 9001 Certification

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National treasure David Attenborough delivered a truly heart-wrenching speech to the UN Security Council yesterday as he warned "it's already too late" to prevent the effects of climate change.

Attenborough went on to say that he doesn't envy the position that governments find themselves in because "we have left the stable and secure climatic period that gave birth to our civilisations".

He's calling for people to re-think their daily actions to help cut global emissions to "net zero". In order for us to achieve this, there needs to be a dramatic reduction in harmful gases and pollution being released into our atmosphere. So, we all need to take steps to live in more conscious, greener ways.

climate change

An eco-friendly certification option

Here at ISO Accelerator, we offer a remote ISO certification service that allows businesses to gain their certification while keeping emissions to a minimum.

Our service can be completed without anyone ever traveling to or from your business, meaning your certification with ISO Accelerator will have an overall lower impact on the environment than certifications provided by other (non-remote) assessment bodies.

We can help you develop a suitable management system, conduct an audit of this system, and award you your certificates remotely. Not only does this have some pretty considerable benefits during the COVID-19 pandemic, but it also has a positive impact on the environment. A real win-win!

Ready to start your ISO certification and help save the planet? Learn more about the certifications or get in touch today.

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Read More: How to Achieve Environmental Objectives and Save Money on ISO Certification