Europeans Speak out on ISO...


Michael T

Greetings all... I just ran across this and found it..... interesting...

The June 2002 issue of Quality Progress has a short little blerb as follows:

European Survey Says Industry Doesn't Value ISO 9001

A survey conducted by the Engineering Quality Forum (EQF) in the United Kingdom reveals ISO 9001 is not seen as cost effective by industry.

About 68% of respondents reported the quality management standard is of marginal cost effectiveness or is not cost effective at all. Other key findings include:

- ISO 9001 has become a business requirement for marketing rather than quality reasons.
- Despite greater demand for quality, price is still the prime purchasing consideration.
- About 28% of pruchasers still rely on inspection of product rather than audit, peformance measurement and ISO 9001 requirements.

EQF is made up of major engineering institutions in the United Kingdom. The Manchester School of Management analyzed survey responses. A copy of the report can be purchased by e-mailing: [email protected].

Whatcha think???
Elsmar Forum Sponsor

Any time we take something which has potential value and mandate it, the value lessens. This is because organizations who do not see value just go through the motions enough to get by. Those organizations who attempt to maximize ISO become disenchanted when they see sloppy organizations achieve the same goal they worked hard for.


Super Moderator
Super Moderator
Whatcha think???
I always find "band-wagon jumpers" amazing. When it first came out, "oooOOOooo...nifty marketing tool....must get!". Now it sometimes to almost always be preceded or followed with a certain four-letter word.

This is because organizations who do not see value just go through the motions enough to get by.
So true! I've looked at other organizations and scratched my head in wonderment. They're barely meeting the requirements and yet become registered without breaking a sweat. My organization opts to take the ISO Standard to heart, work hard at using it to improve not only our product but our processes too, and we get dinged left, right, and centre by the Registrar. Doesn't seem quite fair, does it? :frust:

With good intentions, my organization looked at the Standard and said, "Heeeeey! We can use this for everything in our company...not just products and processes!" Everything at our company falls under the QMS....or perhaps that should be BMS (Business Management System).

Unfortunately, despite the good intention to improve our organization, this makes us subject to more in-depth audits.

Those organizations who attempt to maximize ISO become disenchanted when they see sloppy organizations achieve the same goal they worked hard for.
Bingo. And that is the same question that is being asked at our Top Management level. Some are wondering if we went too far by implementing a BMS - above and beyond what the '94 Standard required. They want to see tangible results. They want to see the data that shows what we were like before ISO and what we're like now.

Our Customer's have not asked for ISO. We did it "voluntarily." Initially, it was implemented for marketing reasons (or so I told - before I showed up here). But now, some members of Top Mgmt see no benefit.

We've shown them the trends as our system has matured. More positive Customer feedback. Customer Complaints are of a less serious nature (meaning that in more and more cases, they are attributable to Mother Nature - not something we can control). Yield has increased. Our processes have become streamlined.

And yet they counter-argue with the fact that our competetion is still in business with a half-a$$ed ISO programme or none at all.

To me, I do see a benefit to having registration to ISO 900x, but only if it used to it's full potential. Those that just go through the motions, give the whole thing a bad flavour.

To end on a happy note, though, I picked this up on an ISO Fun webpage: "In an effort to cut costs, some organizations are choosing not implement ISO 9000. Some are implementing ISO 900 instead. Under this standard, everyth tenth thing they do, gets done correctly." :D
You know you're doing it for the right reason when...

I think it was Carl (correct me if I'm wrong) who was self-declaring to ISO 9001. Methinks this is an indication that they want to do it right. I often tell companies I work with that I am less concerned about registration than I am about having a system that works. If the system works, I think registration should pretty much take care of itself.

INMSHO, that is the bottom line. If all you want is the flag, the QMS is meaningless. If you want results, the flag sould come naturally.


Who's the judge

And who makes those determinations that a company isn't worthy of the certificate? Certaintly not the company. Certaintly not their Registrar. Certaintly not their Consultant. Competitors? Maybe. That's sour grapes. Who is doing this measuring of the company's worthiness to hold this certificate? Or is it one of those things people like to talk about, like "You know, I wish people were more honest." We all would like that. But, try pointing out the dishonest ones.

And, no, if my neighbor got the same flag as I did, I wouldn't gnash my teeth because I thought they don't deserve one or obtained it by ill-gotten means. I would resent an outsider telling me that this is the case, particularly without evidence. Hearsay is inadmissable in Court.:biglaugh: :ko: :smokin:



My stance all along

I've said it from day one. I wouldn't do it, if I had a choice. But, like being selected as a member of the team tasked with winning, whether or not I truly like the game, quitting is the only other option. I hated the Lean process we went through because it was a waste of time. Someone thought we were fat with waste and efficiency. That wasn't true and everybody on the committee knew it, but we had to play the game because someone got it their head that we need it. Results? Nada, zilch. But our ISO certification effort had yielded process maps, procedures and a new way of thinking by the majority of Department Heads. Why? because they know nothing about it and the Honcho has ordered it to happen. Not a very good reason, but that's the name of the Game, now.

I really admire the man for putting this business together but he is prey to evey new fad that comes along. During some of his recent pitches to the troops beating the ISO drum, he stated the following: "Folks, we not asking for Six Sigma, which is the top of the line in respect to Quality Programs." (He had just read a book by Jack Welch). " We need to be ISO 9000:2001 to gain a competitive edge in the market place". After several of these department meetings, referring to ISO 9000:2001, I sent him a private e-mail telling him that it is 9001:2000. Nobody picked up on it. Nobody. Just the idiot QM. Who cares? We're in it for the certification, and I'm staying with it as a team player. Whether we measure up by anyone elses standards, I could care less. Just get us there. Just like the other member's you cite, I know what the dream is. Too bad, nobody is listening.
I trashed my post to you because it was too harsh. But, that's energy, isn't it? You just bring out the animal in me!:rolleyes:
:agree: :ko: :smokin:


Quite Involved in Discussions
One thing I tell my people is that ISO is an good start and the sky is the limit, but it is up to top management on how high it will go. There is going to be the companies that just maintain the certificate and I believe that the 00 standard is more acceptable of this. No standard is a cure all, as many companies discover.


Not gpainter, wish it was?

Jim Wade said:

Hi gpainter

It seems to me that, if the registrars take the 2000 version seriously, then it should be much less easy just to go through the motions.

rgds Jim
Why less easy? Maybe, some registrars too, realize that it's all you say it is. Why would you think that it should be harder? Maybe it's a thing you see and the rest of us minions just deal with, like the Model of the year? Why does it have to be your model? Your vision. Oh, I get it. It's the doctrine. Shades of gray, James. Not wrong. Just workable. Are you always this way? :bigwave:
:agree: :ko: :smokin:

M Greenaway


Are you really posting at 2:30 in the morning ?

Anyway like you say ISO9001:2000 came with the promise that it would now address actual performance, hence an ISO9001 certificate could be interpreted as an 'award' based on performance instead of just a badge saying what type of QMS was present. However as you have also discovered some registrars feel it not in their remit to audit performance, just that there are systems in place to measure performance - which is quite sad.

I wouldnt say ISO9001 certification is meaningless, just that it doesnt mean you will get good service and/or product. All it means is a company operates a system in compliance with ISO9001, now if all you do to assure the quality of your supplies is look to this one fact then you deserve what you get. As we know becasue ISO9001 is not actually a standard compliance to it actually means nothing as it gives us no idea how the company actually manages quality.

Well documented rubbish was the critical view of the 1994 standard, what phrase can we use for the 2000 version ? Maybe well mapped rubbish.

Hmmm - guess ive talked myself around here - you're right Jim it is meaningless.:vfunny:
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