What Does it Mean to be ISO 9001:2008-Certified?

ISO

In the manufacturing industry, a lot of weight is put on certain principles and standards. After all, when manufacturing something, it’s of the utmost importance that the item be produced to specifications and with little to no margin of error.

We are proud of our 99.94% defect-free status and our ISO 9001:2008 certification. However, we also realize that for the average person, this bit of information may sound impressive but also raises eyebrows. Because, what even is that besides a bunch of letters and numbers?

ISO develops and publishes more than 18,000 international standards. The ISO 9001:2008 is the title of a document that outlines the requirements that an organization must maintain in their quality system. There are several different documents within the ISO 9000 family of standards, but ISO 9001-2008 is the only ISO standard that requires physical certification. ISO 9001:2008 is the most recent standard, and the “2008” references the year of latest revision.

ISO 9001:2008 does not define the actual quality of a product or service, but rather helps to achieve consistent results and continual improvements in the process. Thus, if you can make an excellent product most of the time, this helps you make it all the time. It’s just good business practices.

Spotting the Differences Among Manufacturers

The term “ISO 9000 Certified” is technically incorrect as ISO 9000 does not have requirements. “ISO Certified” is also incorrect, as it does not state which ISO standard a company is certified to. “ISO 9001 Certified” means an organization has met the requirements in the ISO 9001 Quality Management System (QMS). ISO 9001:2008 is focused on meeting customer expectations and delivering customer satisfaction so that more focus can be served to the customer. ISO9001 evaluates whether the Quality Management System in place is appropriate and effective, while forcing the organization to identify and implement improvements.

Continuous improvement assures that customers benefit by receiving products/services that meet their requirement, and that consistent performance is delivered. Internally, the organization will profit from increased job satisfaction, improved morale, and improved operational results (reduced scrap and increased efficiency).

While it’s easier for a company to claim that they work to ISO 9000 standards, it’s hollow unless they’ve been certified to the current standards.

The Benefit of ISO 9001 Certification

For more than twenty years, ISO 9001 has been recognized as the ideal way for an organization to prove they take delivering a quality service seriously. The standard was released in 1987, being constantly reviewed and improved ever since. While it is hard to pinpoint direct correlations between ISO 9001’s quality system and business performance, a number of studies have strongly suggested that the rigor of 9001 (and related quality management standards) does just that. Though never solely the reason for seeking the benefits of ISO 9001 certification, several substantive surveys show that new business was a direct result.

According to data from the British Assessment Bureau’s (BAB) independent 2015 Client Satisfaction Survey, the two main motivational reasons for obtaining the Quality Management System standard from ISO was to win new business (48%) and to meet industry requirements and expectations (45%). The survey was conducted by specialist market research organization Lake Market Research.

The results of the BAB Client Satisfaction Survey were expected, as BAB’s Director of Marketing, Rob Fenn, further explained, “Every day, businesses of all sizes get in touch to say ISO 9001 is being asked in a pre-qualification questionnaire or framework agreement. The reality is companies can’t simply give their word, they need to demonstrate they can deliver a high-level of service on a consistent basis. This is the assurance ISO 9001 certification provides.”

By successfully achieving ISO 9001 certification, an organization can stand out by improving productivity and increasing profitability, as well as encouraging risk assessment practices to create an exceptional Quality Management System. These benefits were backed up by BAB’s Client Satisfaction Survey, where 70% of respondents said they were either better managed, more efficient, or had saved money from improving internal processes.

ISO commissioned its own survey in 2014 showing that 1,138,155 ISO 9001 certificates were issued worldwide in 2014.

MSI is proud to have completed and stayed compliant with ISO 9001:2008 Certification, proving keen attention to quality and customer satisfaction. MSI will be renewing its certification in the spring of 2018. For more information on MSI, contact us.