Early Adoption Puts Us on Target for ISO 9001:2015 Certification by January 2018
As the year draws to a close, Metal Cutting Corporation is pleased to announce we have been recommended for imminent certification in the new ISO 9001:2015 standards for quality management. This exciting news comes on the heels of successfully completing the necessary recertification and transition audit, which was performed by DNV GL-Business Assurance, an independent certifying company that is itself certified by the ANSI-ASQ Accreditation Board (ANAB) to carry out ISO evaluations.
Metal Cutting has maintained consistent and continuous certification since 1994 and is now ahead of more than 75% of organizations with quality management systems in being recommended for the transition to the ISO 9001:2015 requirements. We expect our new certification to be official and uploaded to our website in January 2018.
Some Background on ISO 9000 Standards
As we discussed in our blog 6 Things to Know About ISO 9000, the ISO 9000 quality management standards provide guidance in areas such as customer focus, leadership, engagement, process approach, improvement, decision-making, and relationship management. Unlike so-called ISO compliance, ISO certification shows that an organization has put in the time, effort, and money to have its quality management practices verified by an independent, accredited auditor. ISO certification shows that an organization has prioritized the importance of devoting the time, effort, and resources to have its quality management practices actually verified by an independent, accredited auditor overseen by an official accrediting body. And with certification comes all the benefits of a proven quality management system (QMS) for the company and its customers.
The ISO 9000 standards are reviewed every five years and revised periodically, and the latest version was finalized in September 2015 (hence the year in the name). Companies were then given until September 2018 to transition to the new ISO 9001:2015 standards. With our audit complete and January 2018 our expected certification date, Metal Cutting is well ahead of the curve.
What Are the ISO 9001:2015 Changes?
The most recent ISO 9001 quality management standards were revised to accomplish several things — namely, to:
- Create a structure for aligning all the different ISO standards and making them more compatible
- Improve readability, by making the standards more generic and reducing documentation requirements
- Identify risks and opportunities for organizations to mitigate or prevent those risks, and take advantage of opportunities to make improvements
Where the previous standards, ISO 9001:2008, were organized around 8 clauses, the ISO 9001:2015 standards are based on 10 clauses that will eventually be extended to other ISO standards, providing greater uniformity and a consistent structure across the entire ISO quality management system moving forward. The 10 clauses are:
- Normative reference
- Terms and definitions
- Context of the organization
- Performance evaluation
The new standards no longer require a written quality manual, and procedures and work instructions are not mentioned; instead, individual organizations can decide for themselves how to verify that ISO requirements are being met. According to the ISO 9001:2015 standards, documents are now “documented information,” records are now “retained documented information,” and companies define the scope of their QMS rather than the exclusions taken.
Here at Metal Cutting, we have had great success with our tried-and-true quality manual, as well as our documentation practices and forms; therefore, we elected to keep these valuable tools as part of our documentation process. We have rewritten our quality manual to align it with the 10 clauses of ISO 9001:2015 and to fine-tune our procedures and work instructions to incorporate the new elements mandated by the standards. Additionally, we have added line items to our management review agenda to incorporate risk mitigation. as well as other items mandated by the new standards
A New Focus on All Stakeholders and Risk
Where ISO 9000 standards were previously focused on quality management as it relates to products and customers, the ISO 9001:2015 standards are designed to also encourage organizations to think about quality management in relationship to all interested parties. At the core of these new standards is the mandate to thoughtfully consider and analyze risk in all phases of the business — not just as it pertains to the company, but as it pertains to all stakeholders: employees, suppliers, partners, neighbors, the community, and the environment.
This new focus on identifying risk throughout our organization and for all the communities it touches makes the ISO 9001:2015 standards a great tool that we are excited to implement. It not only provides a methodology for constantly improving our process and products — it also provides a better way for us to handle risk. While we have always thought about risks when making decisions, the new ISO 9001:2015 standards provide a more formalized way to ensure we think ahead about what could happen and how to prevent problems from occurring, rather than having to go back and fix them after the fact.
A Company-Wide Commitment to ISO 9001:2015 Standards
The management team at Metal Cutting Corporation has embraced implementation of the new ISO 9001:2015 standards as our framework for reviewing and improving our process, to ensure that we always:
- Deliver high quality, tight tolerance products to our customers
- Provide a safe and efficient workplace for our employees
- Honor our commitments to our suppliers and creditors
- Care for our community and the environment we all share
As we celebrate 50 years of precision by encouraging ourselves to think manufacturing, Metal Cutting’s certification in the new ISO 9001:2015 standards tells ALL our stakeholders that we continue to be unwaveringly committed to our quality management practices — and we will remain committed for decades to come.
Even among ISO certified companies, there are other important things to looks for in a potential partner. Learn more by downloading our free guide, 7 Secrets to Choosing a New Contract Partner: Technical Guide to Outsourcing Your Precision Metal Fabrication.
This week’s blogger, Barbara Osborne, is the Quality Assurance Manager at Metal Cutting Corporation.