With over 1.1 million certificates issued worldwide, ISO 9001 helps organizations demonstrate to customers that they can offer products and services of consistently good quality. It also acts as a tool to streamline their processes and make them more efficient at what they do. Acting ISO Secretary-General Kevin McKinley explains: “ISO 9001 allows organizations to adapt to a changing world. It enhances an organization’s ability to satisfy its customers and provides a coherent foundation for growth and sustained success.”
The 2015 edition features important changes, which Nigel Croft, Chair of the ISO subcommittee that developed and revised the standard, refers to as an “evolutionary rather than a revolutionary” process. “We are just bringing ISO 9001 firmly into the 21st century. The earlier versions of ISO 9001 were quite prescriptive, with many requirements for documented procedures and records. In the 2000 and 2008 editions, we focused more on managing processes, and less on documentation.
“We have now gone a step further, and ISO 9001:2015 is even less prescriptive than its predecessor, focusing instead on performance. We have achieved this by combining the process approach with risk-based thinking, and employing the Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle at all levels in the organization.
“Knowing that today’s organizations will have several management standards in place, we have designed the 2015 version to be easily integrated with other management systems. The new version also provides a solid base for sector-quality standards (automotive, aerospace, medical industries, etc.), and takes into account the needs of regulators.”