WHAT IS IS0 9001

ISO 9001 is most easily understood as a “book of best practice” for a company or an organisation.  Its objective is to provide a proven framework that helps you improve the way in which your work works.  Underlying the standard is a process of creative destruction; the objective of which is to ensure the organisation becomes more efficient and more effective over time.

Obviously, these days however, it needn’t be a “book”, any quality manual and associated procedures describing how processes work can be retained completely electronically.

The ISO 9001 standard provides a framework that asks a company to demonstrate that:

  • At the business planning or strategic level, it understands the environment within which it operates and takes action to:
  • Mitigate any threats or risks
  • Take advantage of any opportunities
  • At the operational level it reviews and takes action on any process risks or opportunities
  • Overall the company can demonstrate continual improvement


There have been many studies into the benefits of ISO9001.  Many of these are by well-known and illustrious bodies for instance Mori and SGS.  Interestingly, they all seems to report similar findings.  The results below show the benefits found in a study by Research International:

  • Improved profit/reduced costs – 40%
  • Improved managerial control – 86%
  • Improved efficiency – 69%
  • Reduced waste – 53%
  • Improved customer service – 73%
  • Improved staff motivation – 50%