With an initial outlay of anywhere between €5.5k to €15k and annual costs of €1-€2.5k many businesses rightly question the value of ISO:9001 and whether or not they will see a positive return on their investment. If the decision to implement an ISO:9001 Quality Management System is internally motivated and implemented correctly then the answer is yes. Let me explain why.
Research concludes that there are three elements that contribute to an organisations performance (Grant, 2010); 1. operational environment (or context), 2. strategy and 3. the impact and management of unforeseen events (we’re all on a steep pandemic learning curve on this one). Therefore it follows that change management, strategic planning and effective risk management are all essential ingredients to achieving superior performance and positive results. Funnily enough these ingredients reflect those of an effective Quality Management System compliant with ISO:9001!
To date ISO:9001 has been adopted by over 1 million organisations globally across all activity sectors and ongoing research supports the conclusion that certification has proven benefits, including:
- Increased productivity.
- Improved quality.
- Reduced costs.
- Increased customer satisfaction an improved image. *
- Increased sales and market share. *
- Improved compliance on sector specific regulatory requirements. *
* Benefits 4-6 can be directly linked to ISO certification as opposed to the implementation of a non-certified Quality Management System.
Miguel et al, 2017 took a closer look at how the revision of the standard in 2015 reflected the principles of EFQM and created a nice table that illustrates the natural alignment.
Their research showed that there is a positive correlation between ISO:9001 certified businesses and their ability to manage change and achieve improvements.
The improvement approaches embedded in the ISO:9001 principles such as innovation, pivoting through re-organisation and agility through learning are all critical for businesses to achieve success and build resilience. 2020 has shown us that whether we like it or not we operate in a global environment where external events outside of an organisation’s control can have a profound impact on the viability of your business model.
This brings me back to where I started …. the ingredients to success, change management, strategic planning and risk management, all of which will be embedded in the fiber of your organisation with ISO:9001 certification.
(Full disclosure; I provide ISO:9001 consulting services and therefore have a vested interest in convincing you, a job that was made easier with the publication of the significantly improved revised standard in 2015. I advocate on-line certification for SMEs operating non-regulated sectors as it represents better value for money and the cost is generally not prohibitive).
For more information on my ISO consulting services click here.
Casadesús et al., 2000; Boiral, 2012; Tari et al.; 2012; Zimon, 2016)
Boiral, O. (2012). ISO 9000 and organizational effectiveness: A systematic review. Quality Management Journal, 19 (3), 16-37.
Casadesús, M., Heras, I. & Ochoa, C. (2000). The benefits of the implementation of ISO 9001 normative: Empirical research in the Spanish companies.
Grant, R.M. (2010). Contemporary Strategy Analysis. John Wiley and Sons Ltd.
Miguel et al, 2017, Listen to ISO 9001:2015 for organizational competitiveness: Correlation between change management and improvement, DOI: 10.1515/picbe-2017-0097, pp. 916-926, ISSN 2558-9652| Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Business Excellence
Tarí, J.J., Molina-Azorín, J.F. & Heras, I. (2012). Benefits of the ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 standards: A literature review. Journal of Industrial Engineering and Management, 5 (2), 297-322.
Zimon, D. (2016). Influence of Quality Management System on Improving Process in Small and Medium–Sized Organizations. Quality – Access to Success, 17 (150), 61-64