ISO and the ISO 9001 management system are recognized internationally as an assurance of quality and reliability in organizations and businesses.
ISO, the International Organization for Standardization, is a network of institutions, in 161 countries, that seek to establish standards for quality and requirements of materials, products, processes, the organization of information and management systems, with the idea that any organization can conduct business with any other, in a global market.
ISO does not legislate or enforce regulations. Technical committees of experts from industry, science, governmental and private organizations work together to develop international standards. Any ISO certification merely ensures that a management system includes all the requirements in processes and information organization.
ISO 9001 is a quality management system for any organization, ensuring the quality of products, services and documentation. Many industries require contracting companies to be ISO 9001 certified. Some types of contracts for the government, oil industry or medical technologies are dependent on ISO 9001 compliance.
Small business can benefit from ISO 9001 as it standardizes the way the businesses are run. Processes will be written, documents will be organized and the basic functions will be streamlined, allowing a change of employees or management with fewer detrimental effects to overall operations.
Focus on Customer Service
Part of the ISO 9001 management system, is a standardization for customer service and the way customer requirements are met. Methods for measuring and tracking customer satisfaction are also part of the ISO 9001 system.
The ISO 9001 system also includes regular internal audits, to identify any nonconformity in procedures or documentation. These internal audits can catch small errors in processes or procedures before they become costly problems. Regular internal audits can also reduce disruptions from outside customer audits.