SYNCBlog ISO standards

What is the ISO Standard and How Can You Receive It?

January 2021

The ISO standard is a quality management standard.
What does “quality management” mean? The organization’s conduct.
An organization meeting the standard’s requirements is a learning organization, defining for itself the work processes, examining itself and willing to accept criticism in order to advance and improve itself.

The organization’s conduct, when accredited for the ISO standard, suggests daily conduct for gathering data which is important for the organization – such communication with the client. Is the client satisfied with the nature of the organization’s work with him, or is there room for improvement?

Another example is whether the organization’s activity is managed efficiently. The organization may have an amazing product or service, but since the organization does not know how to manage itself correctly, it damages itself, and consequently damages its clients, who are retroactively uninterested in working with such an organization.

These days, there is a wide variety of quality standards dealing in quality control, organization conduct and emphasizing unique occupations (such as: medical equipment, food, information security, environmental protection and more). When a surveyor on behalf of the accreditation institute performs a test at the organization, he samples the organization’s activity emphasizing the standard, according to which the organization is managed.

There is no doubt that correct implementation of a quality standard expresses the organization’s streamlining, and raises tangible data, according to which the management can see what is going on in the organization, and made important strategic decisions, leading to real improvement.

So, what is ISO?

So, what is ISO in fact? Accreditation to the quality ISO standard, is made under the supervision of the International Organization for Standardization, and accordingly, accreditation for quality standards is international and globally recognized. The accreditation institutes (which accredit Israeli organization) are supervised by the International Organization for Standardization, and once a year, representatives of this organization arrive in order to ensure that indeed, these accreditation institutes operate properly, and enable them to continue survey and accredit Israeli organization for these ISO standards.

An ISO consultation company arriving to implement a quality standard in an organization has an important place, since it guides the organization and influences the approach and method of implementation in the organization. When an engineer arrives in order to implement a quality standard, he views the organization from a point of view of an engineer who understands quality assurance processes, and in collaboration with the organization’s representatives, knows how to point to the important processes, the critical points in these processes and the most appropriate way to implement the standard in the organization. There is no doubt, that the experience and knowledge shared by the organization and the engineer accompanying the implementation process, will lead to the success of the joint process, when beyond receiving the certificate following the accreditation, it will also be possible to improve processes and conduct real quality control which will contribute to the organization, streamline it and assist it in reaching higher places.

The Accreditation Process for the ISO Standard is Performed in the Following Manner:

The first stage – survey the current state – who does what, how is it done, identify “holes” in the work processes and the organization’s conduct (if there are any…) and such. After gathering this information, the organization’s management convenes and defines work plans in order to align and define work processes (there are organization, which at this point also define work teams for implementing the method).

The second stage – implementing the work processes, defining quality control points and writing procedures according to the standard’s requirements and the organization’s activity. This process includes 3 types of procedures: the first is called a “quality guide”, which means an executive summary – general reflection of the organization’s quality assurance activity. The second refers to quality processes and is called “quality procedures” – how the organization is managed. The third expresses the organization’s professional activity, while emphasizing specific processes, and is called “work instructions” (usually quality control processes are included in these procedure). Naturally, the names of these procedures may change between organizations, the important thing is not the procedure’s title, but rather referring to the meaning of the processes.

The third stage – after defining the processes and writing procedures about them – we train the employees in the organization, implement the work methods, perform quality control according to the points we defined, begin monitoring the ongoing activity and the subjects which are important for the organization. Usually, this stage is the most important one in the process of standard implementation, since changing processes which the employees have been used to thus far is not simple, but doable!

The fourth stage – testing that the quality management system was indeed implemented and the work processes are performed as they were defined. Afterwards, the senior management is given the results of the standard implementation and the results of the organization’s quality management system are reflected to the senior management. At this point, the management is already incorporating in its management meetings, strategic decisions in quality which also affect other areas in the organization.

After finishing the implementation process, the organization is ready for a surveyor on behalf of the accreditation institute, who arrives to perform a test in the organization, at the end of which – if the organization is prepared for the test – continues the accreditation process and receives an ISO certificate by the accreditation institute.

Good luck!

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