5 reasons to get ISO certified

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Why would an organisation get certified? Getting certified to ISO standards for Quality, Safety or Environment is an important – and often necessary – step for businesses entering the next phase of growth.

In certain industries, including construction, engineering, manufacturing, mining, health and technology, ISO certification is especially critical for demonstrating that a business meets the global benchmark for the relevant standard.

While, in effect, organisations seek ISO certification to become more effective and efficient, in reality, many organisations need to get accreditation in order to bid for work, win tenders and expand.

No matter what the motivation, getting certified to ISO 9001:2015, ISO 45001:2018 and ISO 14001:2015 will not only aid in growth, expansion, new clients, and increased revenue – if implemented well, your business can also increase efficiency, staff and customer satisfaction, communication, and processes.

Even if certification starts as a tick in the box to win or tender for work, it can improve your business across the board, with no additional effort.

The following benefits provide 5 reasons to get ISO certified, although the list of tangible and intangible benefits once you have achieved certification will undoubtedly be greater.

1. Implement a process approach

Every business has processes – formal or informal – within their day-to-day operations. These are the tasks that are performed in a particular order to deliver products or services to the highest standard for the end user – the customer. The ISO standard requires documentation of these processes – from the inputs and actions to the intended outputs – to ensure these processes are predictable and repeatable.

Having the lowest price is no longer the only consideration for winning work. Governments and large corporations around the world are becoming stricter and more specific in what they require from organisations they work with. They want to work with businesses that not only say, but can prove they deliver quality outcomes, consistently.

Implementing a process approach allows for oversight and control of documented processes, highlighting areas for improvement and ultimately resulting in better performance.

2. Improve customer satisfaction

The primary focus of ISO 9001:2015 for Quality Management Systems is customer satisfaction. Every customer will have their own definition or perception of quality and many companies are working at cross purposes with their clients, providing what they believe to be of value and importance in the eyes of their target market only to be frustrated when they lose business or receive complaints because the requirements of the customer were different than what they had in mind.

Adopting a customer focus adds value for customers and is likely to enhance their satisfaction and loyalty. Repeat business is less costly to achieve than new business, so it pays to keep your current customers happy.

Certifying your organisation to ISO 9001 – and any subsequent ISO standards – shows your stakeholders and customers that your products and services will consistently meet their expectations.

This is relevant to any sized business in any industry – whether your customers are consumers, other organisations or government departments.

3. Identify opportunities for improvement

There are 10 core clauses that provide a common structure across a number of ISO standards, including ISO 9001, ISO 45001 and ISO 14001, allowing organisations to integrate the implementation and management of multiple standards more easily.

In each standard, Clauses 9 and 10 focus on Performance Evaluation and Improvement, so no matter what standard you are certifying to, you’ll be monitoring, measuring, analysing and evaluating your performance as a supplier, and then making adjustments to improve your system based on the outcome of this feedback.

This will ensure the ongoing effectiveness of processes but also show if corrective action has had the desired effect – that is, preventing a known problem from reoccurring.

Generally, making improvements will lead to greater customer satisfaction. Whether these are improvements to your products or services, to the methods and resources used or to the management system itself, the positive impact will be felt by both internal and external stakeholders to your business.

4. Increase productivity

A major benefit of certifying your management systems to ISO standards is that it helps your business streamline existing processes to make them as efficient as they can be to produce consistently high-quality results.

It also provides a structure for how the people within a business can support, follow, and contribute to the system. Involving people in this way fosters deeper engagement with operations. This can lead to reduced turnover of staff, better productivity, enhanced trust and collaboration, and a skilled and happy workforce.

Plus, increasing productivity often leads to cost savings. Using resources (including people, materials, time, money and external partners and suppliers) as effectively and efficiently as possible has a direct positive impact on profitability.

ISO certification also has a practical benefit for companies – particularly in engineering, transport, cleaning and construction – to save valuable time when tendering for larger contracts. Rigorous tendering processes involve mountains of paperwork and evidence to be submitted. Producing a certificate that demonstrates your business already meets the standard for Quality, Safety or Environment significantly reduces the amount of paperwork required to be gathered and submitted in a tight timeframe.

5. Grow market share

Not only can a certified management system enhance customer satisfaction, it will also have a positive impact on your reputation. Being able to demonstrate a formal commitment to quality is often a pre-requisite for formal tendering procedures for public sector contracts.

Having a certified management system can open doors to a range of contract opportunities and therefore potentially boost your revenue and market share.

For many of our clients, getting ISO certified has been the catalyst for securing larger contracts and gaining new clients.

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