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Did the changes in ISO 9001 detract from it's primary intent?

Discussion in 'ISO 9001:2015 - Quality Management Systems' started by Sidney Vianna, Jan 21, 2016.

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Did the changes in ISO 9001 detract from it's primary intent?

  1. Yes, ISO 9001:2015 creates more uncertainty to users and and that translates into less confidence.

    10 vote(s)
    52.6%
  2. No, ISO 9001:2015 will enhance confidence in a supplier's ability to fulfill orders

    6 vote(s)
    31.6%
  3. Don't know. As long as certificates keep coming, we are good.

    3 vote(s)
    15.8%
  1. Sidney Vianna

    Sidney Vianna Well-Known Member

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    If you agree with the premise that the (PRIMARY) intent of ISO 9001 is to provide confidence to customers of an organization that organization understands who the customers are, what they want and can consistently provide a product or a service that meets those customer needs and expectations, and agree with the assertion that ISO 9001:2015 brings more subjectivity and lack of clarity on what a QMS focused on product conformity and customer satisfaction should have, could we conclude that the ISO TC 176 unintentionally damaged ISO's flagship and best selling document?

    In other words, does anyone believe that "complying" with ISO 9001:2015 will make an organization more capable of fulfilling orders and keeping customers happy, compared to ISO 9001:2008?

    Will the end users of ISO 9001 certificates see a more reliable supplier base with ISO 9001:2015?
     
  2. David Sanabria

    David Sanabria Active Member

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    Customer are not seeing the benefits of the new changes. All they are seeing is more technical terms used which will in turn numerous and unique interpretation and more NCR written up by inexperience auditors.
     
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  3. Pancho

    Pancho Active Member

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    Yes.

    Eventually.


    Beyond that, I'm not sure that the primary intent of the standard is what you say. Rather, at least for my company, the primary intent is to improve our processes and products. The fact that it provides confidence to our clients is a nice add-on.

    I hope that the new standard will make it more difficult to have a "decorative" certificate. But that will depend a lot on y'all third party certifiers. If you are too strict, maybe the clients will walk. A winner's curse of sorts, and kind of similar to what financial auditors face. The new standard should help you help your clients.
     
  4. Sidney Vianna

    Sidney Vianna Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the reply, Pancho. I was expecting some push back on the PRIMARY INTENT of what ISO 9001 is supposed to accomplish. To this date, many people confuse quality management and assurance. Even ISO themselves deliberately blur the lines between the two, in order for ISO 9001 to be an easier sell to registrants.

    But, make no mistake, ISO 9001 PRIMARY beneficiary is supposed to be the customers of the organizations deploying the standard. Let me suggest you watch the section of the video clip @

    starting around 2:30 and pay close attention to what Dr. Croft, the chair of the ISO TC 176 SC2, responsible for the revisions of ISO 9000, 9001 and 9004, says about the intent of the standard. He CLEARLY states what the PRIMARY intent of ISO 9001 is. He goes on to mention that, organizations interested in improving process, systems and products should use ISO 9004. So, it is not ME saying it. It is the chairman of the SC2.
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2016
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  5. hogheavenfarm

    hogheavenfarm Well-Known Member

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    I think its too early to really know how this will play out (for 2015 version), but over the past few years I have gotten most of our customers basically telling me 9001 is not worth anything in their eyes, UNLESS I have another spec to go with it (16949 or IRIS or some industry add-on), because they do not believe 9001 is proscriptive enough and leaves too much unaddressed. This is part of the reason we are voluntarily dropping 9001 and moving to AISC, among others.
     
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  6. Eric Twiname

    Eric Twiname Well-Known Member

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    Reminds me of an old thread about customers auditing whether we were ISO certified or not...:confused:
     
  7. Pancho

    Pancho Active Member

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    Thanks, Sidney. I understand now. Dr. Croft does indeed spell out that the intent is to provide confidence to an organization's customers that the organization can satisfy their needs. Nevertheless, such goal can only be met through the implementer's customer focus. Thus the benefits that drive our implementation are product and consequence of that intent. Can't have one without the other. Thus, the new standard indeed helps to carry out the intent and my answer to the survey doesn't change.
     
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  8. Sidney Vianna

    Sidney Vianna Well-Known Member

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    As in previous similar polls, most people answering it, seem to come from the receiving end of the ISO 9001 certification "mandate". I would love to hear the perspective from people working for organizations that mandate their suppliers to attain ISO 9001 certification. In other words, the real users of the ISO 9001 certificates, how do they feel their suppliers using the new ISO 9001?
     
  9. PaulJSmith

    PaulJSmith Well-Known Member

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    Late to the party.
    I've just started reading the new 2015 standard, and my initial reaction after first reading is ... things seem to have gotten a bit more wishy-washy than they were with 2008. I have yet to grasp the reasoning behind the changes in nomenclature (e.g. "documents" and "records"), and some clauses seem to have become much more open to interpretation. Again, just my initial impression. I haven't lived/breathed/slept with it yet, but there seems a lot to chew on there.
     
  10. Paul Simpson

    Paul Simpson Member

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    Hi, Sidney. I found it impossible to reply honestly to the question you posed for a couple of reasons:
    • The options didn't give me the chance to distinguish between the intent of the changes and the way the changes are going to be interpreted (and anyway the answer to that is a long way off). So, if the decision by TC 176 was to make the standard less prescriptive but, at the same time, encourage more top management involvement in setting strategy and providing a framework for 'their' QMS then that should lead to improved customer confidence, surely? There is a risk (!) however that users of the 2015 edition will do the bare minimum to get over the transition hurdle and take advantage of the lack of prescription to water down their QMS.
    • The elephant in the room is the continuing debate over 'implementer' and 'certifier' and the relative importance of the part of each party in ensuring the customer gets the products and services they ask for. Yes, ISO 9001 is a MSS suitable for third party certification and CBs have a part to play in keeping their clients on their toes and following standard requirements but the key role is for the system implementers to understand changes in the 2015 edition: the use of context to identify customer / market requirements and requirements from other interested parties like regulators; and applying (whisper it) risk based thinking at both a strategic and operational level, especially in conjunction with the process approach (clause 0.3.1 and 4.4.1 f)
    In summary I vote yes and no in the poll. If users and 3rd party certifiers adopt a check box mentality then the less prescriptive requirements in the 2015 edition will provide less confidence to purchasers. If, however, the spirit of the changes is picked up by implementers and the change in approach required is reinforced by 3rd party certifiers then there is a good chance of improved conformance for products and services.
     
  11. Ganesh Sundaresan

    Ganesh Sundaresan Active Member

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    My view from Automotive industry, 2015 version certainly is not going to enhance the confidence, neither will it deteriorate. I guess it's going to be Business as usual. ISO will continue to open the Business gates, but frisking is something it has not managed to do away with anyway.
     
  12. Andy Nichols

    Andy Nichols Moderator Staff Member

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    It's certainly come a long way from the first intent, which was as a supplier QA requirement. If the "primary intent" is supposed to still be that, I'd have to say "Yes", it has. But the intent has changed over the years, so maybe the answer, correctly, is "No".
     
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  13. Sidney Vianna

    Sidney Vianna Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for the well thought out post, as usual, Paul.

    You might agree with me that, in the universe of ISO 9001 certified companies, the vast majority pursue certification due to customer mandates, contractual requirements and the like. In second place, we have a percentage of organizations that seek registration because, they believe, having a certificate in hand will make them much more marketable to new potential clients. In my experience, this second group tends to drop their certificates after a few years, when they realize that they can’t identify significant new sales attributed to the “certificate”.

    With that in mind, at least for me, it is crystal clear that the reasons for seeking certification are extraneous and extrinsic to the registrant organizations. As such, ISO 9001 implementation tends to have as the primary goal to attain and maintain certification. Organizations then focus on what is needed to “pass the audits”, irrespective if the actions necessary to pass the audits make any sense for them.

    Meanwhile, the significant change brought about the (9001) standard has not been followed by any global direction in conformity assessment mindset, practices and protocols. While auditors are still expected to audit against requirements, these have become much more tenuous and hard to audit against. As you probably recognize third party auditors are constantly being reminded who are their customers are and if your direct, invoice-paying customer is not happy with your performance as an auditor, there is a litany of actions they can exercise, going from auditor replacement all the way to CB transfer. It is very hard to maintain the perspective of third-party and represent your customer’s customers interests when you are constantly being reminded that unless “you show them the shall”, you better rethink your position. And then, “the shall” becomes much less clear and much more ambiguous…


    I have a clear and distinct impression that the TC 176 SC2 did not pay enough attention to the primary interested party of ISO 9001, the registrant’s customers, and revised the best selling ISO document pandering to the organizations implementing it and hoping they would/will do the right thing. A fundamental, strategic mistake, in my estimation. Distancing ISO 9001 from the command and control approach without firmly and consistently re-educating the thousands of third-party auditors and auditing instructors out there, is a hugely unmitigated risk and creates less assurance and confidence in the supply chain. Exactly the opposite of what the business world needs.
     
  14. Paul Simpson

    Paul Simpson Member

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    Thank you, Sidney for your considered response. Without turning this thread into a mutual admiration society :), I can always rely on your well thought out arguments and, although we often disagree on some of the detail I feel we have the common interest of improved customer satisfaction through better conformity assessment.

    I'm old enough to remember the 'pre ISO 9001' days and, while I generally agree with your drivers, don't hold with a summary premise 'organisation's use ISO 9001 for certification because they have to'. Please excuse my paraphrase. IMHO the landscape is very complex and most organisations I have dealings with accept that certification is a a requirement and know they need to maintain it but use the requirements of 9001 to maintain and improve performance - sort of 'We know we have to use it, we might as well make the most of it.'

    I also can't agree that organisations routinely roll over and make non-sensical changes to their QMS just to keep a certificate. My experience is the discussions between auditors and their clients are becoming more mature. You make the opposite point that auditors are scared of losing paying clients and I'd acknowledge that with weaker auditors and immature client / third party assessment relationships there is this tension in approach.

    IMHO (again) the best third party assessment is an honest appraisal of system effectiveness where both parties are prepared to listen to argument and recognise the other's position in the context of the organisation's operating environment and the principles of good quality management. This isn't a perfect world and there will always be some compromise but it is certainly achievable.

    The changes to the 2015 edition have taken out a lot of prescription and I'm sure there will be some challenges for all ISO 9001's interested parties. Some will struggle and the need for more effective guidance still exists. In recent weeks I've seen good evidence of implementation and assessment of 9001 systems so I remain hopeful. Third party assessment does have to change as one part of the customer satisfaction landscape. I look forward to watching it do so over the next few years.
     
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  15. Andy Nichols

    Andy Nichols Moderator Staff Member

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    FWIW - we sometimes and inadvertently mix the need for Certification with the implementation of a QMS. Not that they are mutually exclusive, of course. However, the use of ISO 9001 - and not certification, has as I previously posted gone from a simple "one size fits all" supplier QA requirement, so being much more of a framework for achieving a result which satisfies customers. Certification may require implementation of ISO (or ISO based) requirements, which is where the "passing audits" issue rears its ugly head. I'd tend to agree with Sidney - because we work in the same market - that people do roll over and make changes to their management systems, based on comments from auditors. Maybe the UK market is less tolerant of goofy things and more has more mature audits. Who knows?
     
  16. Sidney Vianna

    Sidney Vianna Well-Known Member

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    Indeed, they have, over the years, drowned the assurance aspect of ISO 9001 and allowed 9004 to creep in 9001, especially with this last revision. There seems to be an identity crisis in the document. And, that is why standards such as ISO/TS 16949 and AS9100 reintroduce a good number of prescriptive requirements on top of the ISO 9001 baseline requirements.

    The reason for ISO 9001 "success" is the business need for supplier confidence. We all know the questioning about the certification sector to provide such confidence and assurance via certificates. If the standard also detracts from the goal, the mission just got harder....
     
  17. Paul Simpson

    Paul Simpson Member

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    True, Andy and I did try to distinguish in my earlier post. Unfortunately, as the thread develops the original points get forgotten or lost.
    Here I think the change has been in the need to prescribe what a good QMS looks like. In the 'good old days' of ISO 9001 before the 2000 edition you had to have documented procedures for everything. Now, in the enlightened days of 'documented information' and the 2015 edition, it is for the organisation to determine what it needs to manage its processes and for the conformity assessment body to assess to see this determination is effective for the processes it operates and the customers it serves in the event the organisation chooses to go for certification.
    Many of us have worked on either side of the certification fence. As in my earlier post I acknowledge the assessment and certification process is by no means perfect but I've never adopted the black / white, good / bad guy approach. I've audited hundreds of companies in tens of countries across three continents and can't identify a best practice pattern I can describe here. The system is too complex to summarise in the few lines of a post.
     
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  18. celso klitzke

    celso klitzke New Member

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    My answers to the original questions:

    1- Yes they damaged it.
    2- I hope not.
    3- I hope not.

    The system still needs to be watched closely, at least with internal audits.
    I believe that the new revision will need some more time expended with the audits.
    I do not believe organisations or registars will expend the extra time needed.
     

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