After 3 years of work, the revision of ISO 9001 has now been published with the following aims:
- To improve an organization ability to satisfy their clients
- To ensure relevance of standards is maintained, as business and industry has changed
- To reflect the needs of all user groups and current operating environments/ technology developments
- To set a consistent foundation for next 10 years
- To allow for standards to easily integrate with other standards – new format throughout, in line with ANNEX SL
Companies will have three years from the date of the standards being issued to complete their transition and ensure that the requirements of the revised standards have been met (until September 2018).
Until the end of this three-year transition period the existing ISO 9001:2008 standards will still remain valid, will still continue to be recognised and can still be audited against.
What are the main changes?
Along with the new high level structure/format, the new standard requires higher priority be given to managing processes and less about documentation.
ISO 9001:2015 emphasises the importance of leadership from top management to ensure that the organisation’s quality management system achieves the desired results.
Risk assessment and risk management has been prioritised and management should establish a culture of risk based thinking throughout the organisation.
What can we do now?
Obtain a copy of the standard and conduct some research into the significant changes.
Consider starting a risk management plan, if you don’t already have one, and begin thinking how to address risk in your business - consider typical risk processes, such as risk determination, risk control, risk mitigation, acceptable level of risk.
Consider a plan for appropriate training and awareness for all parties having an impact on the effectiveness of your company.