SAI Global provides training, audit and certification services for a variety of quality management systems include ISO 9001:2008 certification, the world's most recognised business management standard.
As discussed in the last part of this series, product certification is not only mandatory for certain types of products, but it can also have many benefits for manufacturers.
While these advantages primarily relate directly to the promotion and sale of specific products, instituting a proper quality management system can improve overall business performance, not only having a positive effect on sales, but also on other areas of the business such as a reduction in overheads and other costs, and improved employee morale.
Over one million organisations around the world have adopted ISO 9001 certification making it a truly International business management system.
The principles upon which ISO 9001:2008 is based include:
- customer focus
- involvement of people
- process approach
- system approach to management
- continual improvement
- factual approach to decision making; and
- mutually beneficial supplier relationship.
This enhanced control and understanding of business operations has additional benefits when it comes to staff management and engagement, as by tracking and monitoring issues through a certified system, employees on the front line that have to deal with issues every day become more involved in proposing potential areas for improvement. Management also have the opportunity to review and provide ideas for the business as a whole.
In turn, staff competence, training and development can be maintained, which helps to keep a business at the forefront of its industry. Documenting processes and locking in system changes can help ensure that a business can continue to operate effectively, even if staff leave.
ISO 9001 certified quality management systems can also assist in improving product or service quality and consistency, ensuring customers know what they are getting time and time again.
SAI Global notes that suppliers often look for certification to ISO 9001 as it provides assurance that a business conducts itself in a certain manner. As a third party has performed the audit, it can help provide peace of mind to the entire supply chain and customers.
This extends into export market opportunities, as global customers may demand an internationally recognised certification. Further, contracts and tenders, especially in government, may request ISO 9001certification as a prerequisite.
Implementing a quality management system with ISO 9001 certification, can help provide businesses with a range of advantages, which include:
- more efficient, effective operations
- a reduction in costs and waste production
- increased customer satisfaction and retention
- further opportunities for global market penetration and government tenders
- improved employee and management engagement, awareness and morale
- a competitive edge over other companies that don’t have a system in place
- increased profits; and
- increases in productivity.
SAI Global also offers a variety of training courses to help clients on their journey to ISO 9001 certification - ranging from understanding and implementing courses through to internal and lead auditor courses.