An ISO 9001 consultant is vital in helping your business implement a robust quality management system, ensuring your organisation meets international quality standards and getting ISO 9001: 2015 certified.
They are key players who will help enhance the quality of your company’s products and services, further improving customer satisfaction.
Their responsibilities are understanding the company’s project goals and requirements, performing extensive research and analysis, gathering and analysing product information, finding strengths and weaknesses of ongoing quality control procedures, and studying customer feedback.
These experts assess a business to provide a strategic plan to enhance a company’s management system such that it offers better products and services and enhances customer satisfaction. They also ensure the enterprise has all procedures and policies essential to getting them ISO 9001:2015 certified.
In this blog, we’ll outline the roles of an ISO 9001 consultant and discuss some important factors to consider when selecting one.
We’ll also provide a list of critical requirements that every successful ISO 9001 consultant should meet.
Responsibilities of ISO 9001 consultants
1) ISO 9001 and ISO 9001:2015 Standard Interpretation
The ISO 9001 and ISO 9001:2015 QMS standards are complex to understand. Many organisations have an issue understanding the general requirements and their implementation to their business with specific needs. Here ISO 9001 consultants play a crucial role as they will appreciate a company’s specific QMS requirements and implement the standards accordingly. They will also make you understand each stage in a simplified language.
2) Gap Analysis
Gap analysis is the first crucial step toward implementing an effective quality management system. It is essential to analyse the company’s current QMS, find shortcomings, and implement strategies to overcome and enhance them.
An ISO consultant will analyse your current management system practices, documentation, and controls. They will check if your company’s existing QMS fulfils all ISO 9001 requirements and if some are missing as per the ISO standards. They will also perform quality assurance to check if your services meet the standard requirements. Based on the findings, the professionals will provide you with a detailed audit report highlighting the gaps in your organisation and recommendations.
The gap analysis will help achieve full conformity in the effective ISO 9001 project implementation plan.
3) ISO 9001 Project Strategy and Organisation
The following important role of an ISO consultant is ISO 9001 project strategy and organisation. An experienced consultant can help you in strategising a plan for ISO 9001 QMS implementation project based on your company’s size. They will design a well-planned tailored strategy and allocate time and required resources. They will be responsible for all essential activities, mandatory requirements, resources, training, authorisations, milestone reviews, and handling problems. A Quality Management System implementation can take a minimum of six to a maximum of eighteen months to complete, based on the size and complexity of an organisation.
4) To Identify Business Processes and Documentation
Business processes are the critical control point as per ISO 9001 standard. Many organisations have an issue differentiating between the various processes, functional activities, and departments.
ISO consultants will help you know which business processes are essential for your company. The various processes include resource planning, customer-oriented management, measurement, product realisation, outsourced operations, and support. They will also guide you in its documentation.
5) ISO 9001 QMS Implementation and Documentation
ISO 9001 QMS requires adequate planning and implementation complying with the ISO 9001 standards. The planning, efficient operation, and control is a complex stage and can lead to confusion and problems.
An ISO 9001 consultant is crucial in simplifying the plan and implementing controls and operational strategies tailored to suit your company’s existing QMS.
ISO 9001 consultants can help in understanding which processes should be controlled. They will help you set objectives and collect or prepare essential documentation.
An ISO consultant will help you in identifying the essential documents required as per the stage of the QMS planning and implementation stages for your organisation. They will assist you with the types of controls that need documentation and their number. They will also help you with proper documentation per ISO 9001: 2015 standard.
6) ISO 9001 Pre-Assessment
An ISO consultant will guide and prepare your organisation for the pre-assessment. They will check your company for its readiness, find shortcomings, and provide you with corrective measures.
An ISO 9001 certification body shall perform ISO 9001:2015 certification audit in two stages:
In the first stage, they review your company’s readiness in business planning, internal audits, and documentation.
In stage 2, they will perform an audit on your company’s management system to effectively implement planned controls.
7) ISO 9001 Training
An ISO Consultant should be able to provide ISO 9001 training to their clients and staff. The training program shall include:
- Training employees on ISO 9001 and ISO 9001:2015 awareness at each stage.
- To provide executive ISO Standard outline to the management.
- Process identification, mapping, analysis, and improvement.
- ISO 9001 project management, documentation, and implementation training
- Internal audit, explaining processes, methods shortcomings, and steps to overcome them.
- Problem-solving at various stages of QMS implementation.
- Including management and employees in the QMS project.
- Explaining the result of audits.
- Safety measures to be taken.
Based on the extent of internal expertise within your organisation, you can opt for an external ISO 9001 consultant or an ISO 9001 consulting service to provide some or all of this training.
8) ISO 9001 Internal Audit Program
Internal audits are essential to track the effectiveness of a company’s QMS and overcome setbacks, if any, internally before the certification body’s assessment. The incentive audits will help in finding financial misalignment. ISO 9001 consultants will help you perform internal audits per ISO 9001:2015 standard’s requirements, and this will save you from lacking anywhere at the time of certification.
9) Continual Improvement and Maintenance
Implementing efficient quality management systems is one part; maintaining it is the other. An ISO consultant plays a crucial role in assisting companies to continually improve and maintain their QMS, and ISO 9001: 2015 standard requires enterprises to develop and maintain a dynamic QMS.
ISO 9001 consultants should have skills like problem-solving, lean manufacturing, six sigma, and various business software and tools. These can further accelerate your company’s efficiency, customer satisfaction, and a massive rise in business profitability.
ISO 9001 Consultant Key Requirements
The essential requirements that every successful ISO 9001 consultant should meet include:
1. ISO Certification
An ISO Consultant must be certified by a JAS-ANZ Accredited Certification Body
2. Qualifications and Work Experience
Australian businesses should also check for a QMS consultant’s qualification. They should be certified professionals trained by a recognised training institute.
The work experience is crucial as it provides insights into the industry experience of the professional, which is essential for efficient QMS implementation and getting ISO 9001: 2015 certification. Enterprises must also check for the consultant’s experience working with different industries.
3. Extended team
Companies should opt for professionals who will work as their extended team and implement a budget-friendly and efficient quality management system. They should be committed to providing a continual service, be readily available for queries, and stick with the company after ISO 9001: 2015 certification has been granted. Consultants should also aid in the maintenance of implemented QMS and the renewal of accreditation, and ensure it meets the regulatory compliance. They should explain the cost involved in the certification process to the client.
4. Can Design for Big and Small Enterprises
Choose ISO 9001 consultants capable of designing robust QMS for enterprises irrespective of their size.
5. QMS for improved Performance
The quality management system implemented should improve business performance and not suppress it.
6. Insurances – Professional Indemnity and Public Liability
Businesses must check if the consultants hold Public Liability and Professional indemnity insurance.
7. Client Referrals
ISO Consultants having a list of new and old, long-term, returning clients should be given a preference.
8. Certification Body Referrals
Certification body referrals are an indication of the quality of QMS implemented by ISO consultants or ISO consulting firms. Companies should opt for the ones whose work has been approved by a JAS-ANZ accredited certification body.
9. Years of Experience
Years of experience in the quality management systems industry should also be considered when choosing a suitable ISO consultant.
10. Knowledge of technology
ISO consultants must be able to strategise and implement tailored Quality Management Systems suiting a company’s requirements. One must choose the ones who know use cloud-based tools to set up QMS.
Why Choose Anitech’s ISO 9001 Consultants?
We have listed below the key reasons why one should opt for Anitech’s ISO 9001 consultants:
1. Anitech’s ISO 9001 consultants are experts with relevant experience in the industry. They are certified professionals known for offering exceptional services to our clients in Australia.
2. Our consultants are punctual and have strategised and implemented robust quality management systems, and our client story says it all.
3. Clients like the solution, commitment offered, and a simplified way of explaining policies and procedures.
4. Anitech’s ISO 9001 consultants work as a team with clients and providing quality services is their key aim.
5. They will not only implement efficient QMS for your business but will also guide you on its maintenance and assist you in getting ISO 9001: 2015 Certification or renewing it.
If you want to improve your business performance and achieve customer satisfaction, our QMS Consultants would be happy to help you implement top-notch quality management systems.
For top happening on the QMS front, stay tuned to the Anitech website.