ISO 9000 AND BS 5750-A STEPPING STONE TO TQM
In many companies, to build a quality management system which alone is closely focusing on ISO 9001, 9002 or 9003 has turned out to be a barrier against subsequent quality development with everybody’s participation.
ISO 9000—A MEANS OF STANDARDIZATION:
ISO certification process is recognized as a means of standardization and this opinion is based especially on the following two facts:
1. It is allowable to use the ISO 9000 and the result of a certification in the best possible way.
2. A certification can be an excellent starting point for the support of a disciplined effort to get the best practice standardized as the foundation and necessary condition for continuous improvements.
Besides this disciplined effort to attain the perhaps much-needed standards demanded by an ISO certification and which we consider the most important positive element of a certification, we should like also to emphasize other elements which are considered positive by many companies:
- Uniform criteria for external assessment of the quality management system of a company.
- A third party certification may often result in a heavy decrease of second party audit.
- A simplification and rationalization of new contract situations between customers and their suppliers.
A last element of an ISO 9000 certification, which is certainly not to be underestimated, is the fact that for many of the companies it is the first time that money is granted for a quality project.
ISO 9000—A BARRIER TOWARDS NEW THINKING AND IMPROVEMENTS
Sympathizers of ISO are often people who have carried through a certification process and the opponents on the other side are people who have never been involved in a certification process. The opponents attack sympathizers as people who are in a tight corner. People in this category can be company owners who have spent a great deal of money on the project or perhaps certification bodies which have gained permanent.
- ISO is gradually developing to become patented medicine for leaders and specialists who do not know the real requirements of a company.
- Nobody has, for instance, criticized the concept for not taking into consideration the company’s place in the right market.
- Today the concept is, as a rule, used uncritically without any explanation that it certainly also has its limitations.
- ISO is only a single medicine in the company’s cabinet and it should be used together with other tools in the correct order and in the right dosage to have the maximum effect. Otherwise, the organization lacks what it needs to survive. The medicine may become highly dangerous.
- ISO is easily applied and managed to create discipline in the production process without any involvement by the management worth mentioning.
- At the same time an organization is created in which necessary alterations at a later stage will be both costly and difficult to make.
- It is not only a question of the quality of a product. Quality applies to the same extent to the management, the culture of the company, the marketing etc.