More than one million certified companies in the world take advantage of the notable ISO 9001 standard as a tool for managing their organization.
The ISO 9001 standard contains internationally applicable requirements for the quality of products, services and development.
A company’s quality management system is operating effectively when clear corporate goals have been defined. Achievement of those objectives needs to be reflected in measurable results – based on meaningful key indicators that result from efficient and transparent processes. The best evidence of the quality ability of an organization is continuously improving results.
Eight management principles provide orientation for the task of managing an organization in a focused and systematic manner and ensure continuous improvement. The first of the eight principles of quality management requires consistent customer orientation – the most important thing for business success.
ISO 9001 benefits:
- Increased customer confidence and satisfaction
- Continuous improvement
- Clearly define responsibilities
- Foster employee motivation
- Minimize corporate risk
- Save time and operating costs
- Reduce waste
- Prevent errors instead of correcting them
- Improve corporate image
- Reduce information gaps
The process starts with the client’s needs and expectations. DQS wants to learn about the client’s organization, its management system, size and types of operation. Together both parties will define objectives for the assessment and/or certification, including applicable standards and specifications.
DQS will provide a detailed offer for assessment and certification services, tailored to individual client needs, based on the information provided initially. A written contract will specify all relevant deliverables as well as applicable assessment and certification criteria.
A pre-audit can serve as initial performance or gap analysis, identifying strengths and areas for improvement. For larger assessment and certification projects a project planning meeting provides a valuable opportunity for the client to meet the lead assessor and develop a customized assessment plan for all functions and locations involved. Both services are optional.
The assessment procedure itself begins with review and evaluation of system documentation, goals, results of management review and internal audits. During this process, it will be determined whether the client’s management system is sufficiently developed and ready for certification. The assessor will explain findings and coordinate any required activities to prepare for the on-site system assessment.
The assigned auditor team will audit the client’s management system at the place of production or service delivery. Applying defined management system standards and specifications, the assessment team will evaluate the effectiveness of all functional areas as well as all management system processes, based upon observations, inspections, interviews, review of pertinent records, and other assessment techniques. The audit result, including all findings will be presented to the client during the closing meeting. Required action plans will be agreed upon as necessary.
The independent certification function of DQS will evaluate the audit process and its results, and decide independently about issuance of the certificate. The client receives an audit report, documenting the audit results. When all applicable requirements are fulfilled the client also receives the certificate.
Either semi-annually or at least once per year, there will be an on-site audit of the critical components of the management system. Improvement potential will be identified, with a focus on continual improvement and sustained effectiveness.
A management system certificate is valid for a limited period of time, frequently for a maximum of three years. At the end of this cycle, a re-audit will be carried out to ensure the ongoing fulfillment of all applicable requirements. Subject to this fulfillment, a new certificate will be issued.
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