ISO9001 started life as BS5750 back in 1979 and it defined a management system for the control of a business to help meet customer requirements. Over the years it has been reviewed, updated and improved making it a truly international standard.
Although its origins are as a contractual or requirements standard and was intended to be used by customers who wanted to contractually bind suppliers to a defined standard of quality assurance, it has over time evolved to be a standard that enables a company to demonstrate that it employs sensible and effective management processes. This is achieved by the verification of the system by an independent assessing body who audit a Company's management system.
It must be remembered that ISO9001 is simply a guide to the organisation of good quality assurance (we prefer the term good management) principles. Most companies already demonstrate this by satisfying and continuing to satisfy customers. Consequently the application of ISO9001 can be relatively quick and simple.
The standard requires that only six processes must be documented, however, all of the other processes must be clearly defined and carried out, requirements met and proof must exist to demonstrate this conformance. Clearly one approach is to document some of these processes at an appropriate level for the organisation so that they can be communicated and carried out consistently. JWS typically document these in flow diagrams, as they are simple to follow and audit.
The standard recommends a process approach to structuring the management system. JWS has been using this method since 1993 and fully understands the principle and requirements. The approach focuses on the needs of the business rather than pandering to the requirements of the standard. This should ensure more organisations get the maximum out of implementing ISO9001.
JWS provides all types of training, consulting and support assistance to companies wishing to develop systems in compliance with ISO9001.