Quite often I get asked questions about quality and I must admit, some of them never got answered; not because I couldn’t briefly define quality, rather the answer needs to include a large amount of detail on top of a definition for this concept.
I realized most people know what “quality” means, they accept it, they want it, they impose it and most are outraged when their expectations are not met.
We purchase products or buy services and we expect a high level of quality. This includes situations where the price is rather small. I don’t want to buy a cheap car that eats a lot of fuel or breaks down every 1000 kms. I don’t want to buy training service offered at a low price where the course offers rather trivial information and/or a useless certificate. I expect the cheap car and the training courses to offer quality. At least at a reasonable level.
I personally know products at a high level of quality that are sold at low prices and exceptional courses offered at low prices. Unfortunately, I did meet people that told me they are not interested in quality. Is it ignorance, indifference or is it that the information about the concept of quality is presented at a high level of technicality and people loose interest? What is the difference here?
Are manufacturers and service providers interested in quality? What steps are they undertaking so that us, the consumers, are happy? What do we, the quality management training providers do so the information is clear and well understood by the manufacturers and service providers?
Is it important a quality management system is implemented within our manufacturing and service providing activities? Is it important to have a quality management certification?
The answer to all these questions is ISO 9001:2015 – Quality Management Systems.
ISO 9001:2015 sets out the criteria for a quality management system and is the only standard in the family that can be certified to (although this is not a requirement). It can be used by any organization, large or small, regardless of its field of activity. In fact, there are over one million companies and organizations in over 170 countries certified to ISO 9001.
As the standard sets out: “The adoption of a quality management system is a strategic decision for an organization that can help to improve its overall performance and provide a sound basis for sustainable development initiatives.”
To be certified is not mandatory but the advantages offered by implementing a quality management system based on ISO 9001:2015 should bring more interest from the manufacturers and service providers.
The potential benefits to an organization of implementing a quality management system based on this International Standard are:
a) the ability to consistently provide products and services that meet customer and applicable statutory and regulatory requirements;
b) facilitating opportunities to enhance customer satisfaction;
c) addressing risks and opportunities associated with its context and objectives;
d) the ability to demonstrate conformity to specified quality management system requirements.
I realized that and organization is interested in quality management only when competition on the market becomes fierce and having an ISO 9001 certification shows their clients the company is able to meet expectations and set objectives.
ISO 9001 brings value to an organization only in a case where the certification represents a confirmation of good management practices present in an organization, meaning the system is implemented well.
For a company that activates on a market where competition is fierce, obtaining an ISO 9001 certification could represent one of their main mandatory objectives. These small details could make a real difference and could set the organization apart from their competitors, bringing success.
A “quality” company/organization is quality oriented only when the interested parties obtain the level of satisfaction they set out.
The organization shall monitor customers’ perceptions of the degree to which their needs and expectations have been fulfilled.
I truly believe that to be successful on a highly competitive market, any organization needs to implement a quality management system and this objective should not be ignored.
Source: www.iso.org & International Standard ISO 9001:2015