Looking to certify to ISO 9001 - Any advice?


Alex Hoffman

Good afternoon dear forum users. Faced the need to certify my company in accordance with ISO 9001. Advise a good specialist!


Fully vaccinated are you?
My advice is to read through existing discussions here on implementing ISO 9001 in a company - There are a lot of existing discussions. After you do, ask more specific questions you come up with, and give people here more details such as what type of company, how many employees and things like that.

A read through Implementing A Quality Management System wouldn't hurt.


Super Moderator
Marc is quite right, of course.

I would like to toss in a few general thoughts.

First, is upper management really on board? Will they commit time (including theirs) and resources to the successful implementation of a quality-centric business? I think the most frequent failure of quality system implementations is lack of commitment from management. If they're undermining efforts (overtly or covertly), there's little chance of success.

Second, while it's quite tempting, be wary of using "canned" quality management systems. These are often written to accommodate fortune 500 companies and may not be a fit for your organization. I saw one case where the canned QMS called for more committees than the company had employees. Your QMS needs to fit your company's culture and people. Trying to shoe-horn in one that doesn't is also a path that is unlikely to lead to success.

If you take Marc's suggestion and do the searches, I'm sure you'll see these themes but I wanted to get them up front.


Quality Manager
What kind of business is it, machining or otherwise? I also encourage finding out how honestly into it top management and ownership really are. I would purchase the current revision and read through it taking notes. During that time remember to put things into the context of your organization and watch for and understand the differences between "shalls", "as applicables", and such. Then take what you all do and go from there, rather than trying to start at the standard to force it into the shop.

That's all general and not exact, but it's a starting point. And it can help you keep from getting too far into templates or what some auditors claim you have to do.


Super Moderator
Good afternoon dear forum users. Faced the need to certify my company in accordance with ISO 9001. Advise a good specialist!

Hi Alex,

We found ISO 9001 for Small Enterprises - What to do very useful when we got started some years ago. The current edition covering the 2015 version of the standard is likely even better than the earlier one we had.

Read and understand this booklet. Get your managers to do the same. Then select a local consultant with experience and recommendations. A good one will help by answering questions, leading the first few periodic meetings, and keeping you away from common mistakes. The consultant won't write your documents; your team should do that.

ISO 9001 is a great standard. Implementing it is challenging, exciting and, done right, very rewarding. As you work on your implementation, pay particular attention to your continuous improvement process. An effective CI process will polish all others over time and deliver success to your business.

Good luck! Let us know how it works out for you.
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