Interesting Discussion ISO 9001 audits from the perspective of registrants' customers - an interesting paper

Sidney Vianna

Post Responsibly
Paul Simpson recently shared an interesting paper titled Quality in the Supply Chain - A guide to what makes a ‘good’ ISO 9001 audit from the perspective of the customer and an organisation certified by an accredited certification body.

I think that it makes for interesting reading for those, who like me, want to ensure that certification to management system standards add value, confidence and assurance to ALL STAKEHOLDERS, just like in my Cove sig line. Unfortunately, since it's inception, almost 30 years ago, management system certification has been de-valued and trivialized. It has been deliberately commoditized so, it could be sold and consumed in large volumes. But, let's never forget the original intent of accredited management system certification: add confidence and assurance in the certified supply chain.

That’s why we should emulate the communication channels (feedback loops) devised in the IAQG controlled OASIS database for the whole IAF-led accredited management system certification sector. That is THE ONLY WAY users of certificates (primary stakeholders) can effect change and improvement, in terms of confidence and assurance in the supply chain. At present, the overwhelming majority of CB’s are blindingly focused on the registrants satisfaction and, unfortunately, a good chunk of them just want the path of least resistance to attain and maintain certification. The accreditation oversight layer has shown ineffective in terms of engaging with users of certificates and enabling/facilitating channels that allow certificate users to communicate with CB's, in advance of audits so, appropriate planning can be performed, as well as, post audits to provide CB's feedback about certified system performance. CB's are required (by ISO 17021-1) to devise certification programs for each and every registrant. Certificate users feedback should be a key aspect to customize such certification programs. A certified system that continually fails to deliver on customer satisfaction and product quality should be subjected to longer, more frequent surveillance and even unannounced audits. Without certificate users feedback, most registrants get audited once a year, for one or two days, as a rule of thumb. This boiler-plate, mass produced, assembly-line approach is ineffective and NOT in line with the intent of 17021.

No product improves without user's honest feedback. And, at the risk of repeating myself ad nauseum, the users of ISO 9001 certificates are NOT the registrants, despite the facts they are the purchasers of ISO 9001 certification.


  • QSC-SS-Version-Med.pdf
    5.1 MB · Views: 220
Top Bottom