ISO 9001 FAQs

The ISO FAQ page is designed to answer the most common questions associated with our ISO 9001 certification services. Information includes introductions to the standards, the benefits of being certified and the implementation process.

What is the ISO 9001?

ISO 9001:2008 is the current edition of the ISO 9001 standard, taking over from ISO 9001:2000 in November 2008.  All ISO standards (currently more than 17,000) are periodically reviewed to ensure they remain up-to-date and relevant. Decisions are made to confirm, withdraw or revise standards on an ongoing basis.

The ISO 9001 standard provides a set of standardised requirements for a quality management system, regardless of what a particular organisation does, its size, or whether it is in the private or public sector. It is the only standard within the ISO 9000 family of documents against which organisations can be certified.

ISO 9001:2008 contains no new requirements compared to the previous ISO 9001:2000 edition, which it now replaces. It provides clarifications to the existing requirements of ISO 9001:2000 and introduces changes intended to improve consistency with the environmental management system standard, ISO 14001:2004.

Benefits include:

  • Straightforward  to implement.
  • Helps to qualify for tenders (ITTs).
  • Reduces errors and rework.
  • Improves consistency and provides traceability.
  • Demonstrates an organisation’s quality credentials.
  • Provides compatibility with other management systems such as ISO 14001.

Conformity to ISO 9001:2008 will be evaluated by certification bodies (e.g. ASR Internasional Indonesia) during regular surveillance visits and full reassessment will only take place once current certificates expire.

If you would like to see the ISO 9001:2008 standard in full, a copy can be purchased from ISO.

What are the benefits of ISO 9001?

ISO 9001 certification is an ideal way for an organisation to improve the way it operates and manages, irrespective of its size or industry. Most organisations want ISO 9001 certification to qualify for a tender or to achieve preferred supplier status: typically for public sector work. However, there are many other benefits that can be added to these, including:

1. Improved internal working leading to less errors and re-work.
2. Improved customer satisfaction and loyalty.
3. Improved consistency with traceability.
4. Improved morale and motivation.
5. Preferential insurance premiums.
6. Competitive advantage.
7. Increased profitability.
8. Enhanced status.

In addition, ISO 9001 is designed to be compatible with other management system standards such as ISO 14001 (Environmental), OHSAS 18001 (Health and Safety) and ISO 27001 (Information Security). All or any combination of these complementary standards can be integrated seamlessly. They share many principles, so choosing an integrated management system can provide you with outstanding value for money.

Recent studies in the United States have shown that “U.S. publicly held companies traded on the New York Stock Exchange that achieved certification under the ISO 9001 Quality Standard showed significant improvement in financial performance compared to those companies that have not pursued the standard.” (Source: UCLA, 2002)

What are the requirements of ISO 9001?

ISO 9001 is designed to enable organisations to develop the minimum amount of documentation needed in order to demonstrate the effective planning, operation and control of its processes and the implementation of the effectiveness of its Quality Management System (QMS), including ongoing improvement.

A QMS is therefore necessary in order to meet the requirements of ISO 9001. Your organisation’s QMS should contain the processes, documents, resources, and monitoring systems that direct the work of an organisation regarding product and service quality.

To achieve certification, organisations must demonstrate that they have effective procedures which are consistently applied for activities such as:

  • Management planning and review
  • Internal communication
  • Control of documents
  • Managing human resources and the work environment
  • Determining product/service requirements
  • Product/service design
  • Monitoring customer satisfaction
  • Measurement, analysis and improvement

How long does it takes to become certified?

As you might expect, becoming certified to an ISO standard can take longer depending on the size of the organisation. In order to be successful, a designated representative should take responsibility within your organisation. However, this doesn’t mean you have to appoint a designated ‘Quality Manager’, just someone who is seen as the main coordinator.

In most cases the principals of the ISO standard will soon become integrated within the organisation and before you know where you are, it’ll just be the way you do things! For most organisations, the process will take 3-6 months from first visit to the award of certification.

How long does ISO 9001 last for?

In order to maintain ISO 9001 (ISO 9001:2008) certification, it is necessary to prove that you are still in accordance with the standard’s requirements. Although a certification is valid for three years, a Surveillance Audit is required annually to ensure the organisation is following and maintaining the requirements of their Quality Management System.