Implementing ISO 9001 for small businesses has a lot of benefits as it can help them improve their Quality Management Systems (QMS). Whether your business is in food processing, construction or manufacturing, medical equipment, construction, or any other industry, complying with ISO 9001 standards can help you stay ahead of the competition and improve customer feedback and trust.
This article defines and discusses the importance of ISO 9001 Quality Management System (QMS) and ISO 9001: 2015 certification to small businesses (SMEs) in Australia and the benefits they will reap. So, if you want to improve your business and take it to the next level, read on!
ISO 9001 standard
ISO 9001 is a quality management system proven to improve customer retention and increase sales. Implementing it can provide your small business with many benefits, such as better product design, cost reduction, efficiency, sustained growth, customer service excellence, and more. It outlines the processes and policies fundamental for organisations to establish internal rules to develop and deliver products and services.
Importance of ISO 9001 Quality Management System for SMEs
Small businesses have fewer resources, staff and financial health, and less organised work processes. There is no proper documentation of work procedures, no proper management, and a complex QMS that adds to the enterprise’s overall performance pitfalls.
Hence, ISO 9001 compliance can help SMEs overcome all the setbacks, promote planning and organising their limited resources, and document processes to encourage productivity, and increase revenue and growth. Implementing a robust quality management system that fulfils all the requirements given in the ISO 9001 standard will further strengthen the foundations of a small business, paving the way for new business opportunities and a successful future.
A structured organisation will also boost employee morale and confidence, and this will drive everyone to achieve better results and encourage improvement in strategies to develop quality products and services.
Hence, SMEs must comply with ISO 9001 standard and certify ISO 9001: 2015 to attract better projects and new customers.
Importance of ISO 9001: 2015 Certification for SMEs
ISO 9001: 2015 Certification is a sign of the quality and trustworthiness of an organisation certified with it.
The certification will increase an SME’s value in the global market and open doors for new projects, clients and customers.
Mega-projects and government tenders are given to successful, well-organised businesses with a robust QMS and are known to deliver quality products and services. These projects may or may not immediately enrol small-scale enterprises with ISO 9001 certification but will surely take them into account and might assign small projects in the future. It will therefore pave the way to better projects landing in the kitty of SMEs.
Steps for achieving ISO 9001: 2015 Certification
1) Small businesses must ensure their existing quality management system fulfils all the requirements of the ISO 9001 standard.
2) SMEs should overcome drawbacks in their ISMS to comply with the standard.
3) For better guidance and to ensure no critical step is missed, small enterprises can seek help from a certified and experienced ISO 9001 consultant They will perform an audit on your existing QMS architecture and suggest any area that requires improvement.
4) Once their QMS fulfils all the mandatory requirements, a small business can apply for ISO 9001: 2015 certification.
Benefits of ISO 9001 QMS for Small Businesses
An ISO 9001 QMS has a lot of benefits for small businesses. We have shared them for you to read through:
1) Improves Relationships with Suppliers and Industry People
The ISO 9001: 2015 Certification is an asset for an SME that will help win new contracts, especially government tenders. It can also help companies in winning bids with well-known vendors or suppliers.
The certification will give you an identity of a professional company committed to delivering high-quality products and services. It will give you a competitive advantage over your competitors in the industry.
2) Promotes Business Efficiency
The most significant challenge faced by small businesses is making efficient use of the available resources to yield maximum scalable results. You should also prevent wastage and save costs wherever feasible. An ISO 9001 quality management system will therefore guide here. It will analyse your company’s existing QMS and find relevant business areas where they can utilise the available resources. It will also identify where the organisation can save money.
It will further promote the re-allocation of resources in the wisest possible way with the help of strategic planning to yield improved output and better products and services. ISO 9001, therefore, improve the product lifecycle along with capital gain.
3) Reduced Performance Issues
Creating and implementing standard processes and methodology complying with ISO 9001 will reduce mistakes and workplace incidents, thus promoting safety. Your team’s performance will improve with enhanced and effectively regulated employee training, learning, and well-defined roles.
4) Quality Assurance
Using standard procedures and best practices will guarantee the quality assurance of products and services offered by a small business.
5) Better Decision-making
A robust ISO 9001 QMS uses an evidence-based decision-making process, which is very helpful for small businesses that cannot rely on mere assumptions. Since SMEs have limited infrastructure and resources, it is unwise to invest based on decisions that do not have practical evidence backing. It might be successful or lead to the downfall of the business.
However, if small businesses lay their trust in ISO 9001, which has a facts-based evaluation scheme, they will know the result much in advance.
Hence, SMEs must get ISO 9001:2015 certification, follow all the instructions, and evaluate facts to make informed and profitable decisions backed with appropriate evidence and statistics.
6) Customer Satisfaction
Improved products and services will increase customer satisfaction and their trust and reliability in the business and its goods and services.
7) Increase in New Customers
Every business strives hard to get more happy customers associated with them while making the old, dedicated ones happy. Returning customers is very important and priceless for SMEs. For getting more such, ISO 9001 certification makes it essential to have a customer support service that can help to resolve any consumer grievances, solve their queries, and get feedback.
ISO 9001 certification will help small businesses in getting more returning customers.
8) Integrating other ISO standards
ISO 9001 is very compatible with other ISO standards. Hence, a small business will indirectly invest in other certifications compatible with ISO 9001.
9) International Recognition
ISO 9001 standard and certification are recognised in Australia and global markets for their robust QMS implementations. ISO 9001: 2015 certification will also open doors for international trade and the global market, thus introducing SMEs to international clients and projects.
ISO 9001 provides your organisation with external feedback on your management processes. The third-party certifying body will help you to see your company from a different perspective. Company owners are too close to the day-to-day operations that they skip noticing improvement areas. The ISO 9001: 2015 certification method will give you essential feedback that will help you improve and take care of responsibilities efficiently.
Now that you know everything about ISO 9001 certification, it’s time to take the next step and get your business certified!
If you require expert guidance from our ISO 9001 consultants, feel free to call us on 1300 802 163 or e-mail at – firstname.lastname@example.org.
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