Quality manual for iso 9001

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					Quality manual for iso 9001

Some people wish to get certified to an ISO9001:2000 or AS9100 quality management
system because they have a customer who requires it. Some of these companies might
view a quality system as a necessary evil, and a cost of doing business. For example, if
you supply aircraft hardware to companies such as Boeing, Northrop, or General Electric,
having an ISO9001:2000 or even AS9100 may be a requirement of doing business. Some
company owners can't see the benefits of a quality system other than being able to sell to
such a large and important customer.

Of course, it does cost money to implement and maintain your ISO9001:2000 quality
system. There are costs of having your people, or outside consultants, write your quality
manual, procedures, forms, etc. Depending on the size and type of company, this can run
into many thousands of dollars before you even get certified.

Then there's the annual audit. Again, depending on your company's size and type of
business, this can also run into thousands of dollars. Auditors and registrars aren't cheap.
It is common to get billed for auditors' travel expenses as well. Your initial registration
audit will usually be the most time consuming, and the most expensive. Surveillance
audits that follow are typically much shorter, and less expensive, than the initial audit.

There's also the time and lost productivity from having your people trained to know and
implement the ISO procedures outlined in your documentation. This can be substantial.

Altogether, it can be very expensive to implement and maintain your ISO9001:2000
quality management system.

However, there are ways to mitigate the cost. And if you are serious about quality and
customer satisfaction, you may find that having an effective quality system will actually
make your company more profitable than if you did not have it.

One way you can save money is to do it yourself. It's not incredibly difficult to
implement your own ISO9001:2000 quality management system. It just takes time to
learn how to do it, write your documentation, train your people, and implement your
procedures. If you have time, and you're not under a customer deadline to implement
ISO, you might go this route. There are a myriad of books and other helpful documents
available, including the sample documentation available at If
correctly and effectively implemented, an ISO9001:2000 quality management system can
be an important tool to increase sales and profitability. For example, one of the primary
goals of ISO9001:2000 is customer satisfaction. Customer satisfaction must be
adequately measured, and should improve with time. Greater customer satisfaction
usually leads to more customers, and greater business.
An effective quality system can also reduce your costs. Implementing a procedure such as
receiving inspection, for example, can significantly reduce the amount of downtime you
suffer from defective suppliers' products used in your production. Early detection is key
here. It is much better to detect a problem part at the time of receipt than to detect it later
on, when it is about to be used in production.

Another procedure that can reduce your cost is a good shipping inspection. It is very
expensive to process returns from customers, not to mention that you endanger future
customer sales by shipping the wrong item, or a defective item. A simple shipping
inspection, with someone held responsible for its success, can drastically reduce customer
returns, increasing customer satisfaction and enhancing profitability.

In my time as an ISO consultant and quality manager, I have witnessed company owners
who view ISO as simply a cost, a necessary evil, with no real benefits derived. I have also
witnessed firsthand how a properly implemented ISO9001:2000 quality management
system can save money, increase customer satisfaction, and increase profitability. Which
company would you prefer to be a part of?

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