ISO9001:2008 – Quality Management System Requirements
Setting up and implementing a quality management system to meet ISO9001:2008 requirements will create benefit for your business by assisting in reducing costs and rework plus eliminating inefficiencies.
It provides a structure that makes it quick and easy to find business documents from your cherished business plan including your vision and mission to those important records generated by the business. The records might include, results and actions coming from conducting a management review, achievement of process and product requirements, product conformity and acceptance criteria, training records. Records that auditors or legal practitioners may request if you have had some issue occur within the business that has brought about an investigation or an audit.
The ISO9001:2008 requirements and particularly the guidelines, provide great ideas for managing non conformance of your products or services and preventing them being delivered to customers.
The other great activity that the system promotes is to manage corrective and preventive action to facilitate the reduction in rework, waste and ineffective processes. The beauty of having a system in place is it allows you to manage and control your business rather than the business manage and control you. The business will have a better percentage of producing a quality product and/or service consistently over time rather than producing mishaps that have to be managed more intensively.
It only takes the business and staff some applied discipline to key areas and the benefits are achieved for example:
Cost reduction through improved product reliability, better process control and flow, better documentation of processes, greater employee quality awareness, reductions in product scrap, reworks and rejections.
Key questions to consider in relation to a Quality Management System:
Do you know if your business creates a lot of waste in producing products for sale, or in providing a service?
Do you know how much rework is done on a daily basis throughout your business operations, do you record or keep track of this information?
What business activities do you rely on the most in generating your business revenue and if you do how clear is it to staff on how to do them?
Do you capture results of business activities (i.e. what has been produced in what time frame and to what standard?)
Are your documents dated, do you know if it is the most recent version, has it been authorised for publication, are key documents made available to personnel?
by Kirsteen Rowntree (Quality and Process Improvement Specialist)
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