#ISO standards implementation

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History of ISO

The International Organization for Standardization #ISO is an international standard-setting body composed of representatives from various national standards organizations. ISO has 162 national members.

The organization today known as ISO began in 1926 as the International Federation of the National Standardizing Associations (ISA). It was suspended in 1942 during World War II, but after the war, ISA was approached by the recently formed United Nations Standards Coordinating Committee (UNSCC) with a proposal to form a new global standards body. Founded on 23 February 1947, the organization promotes worldwide proprietary, industrial and commercial standards. It is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, and works in 162 countries.

Because ‘International Organization for Standardization’ would have different acronyms in different languages (IOS in English, OIN in French), founders decided to give it the short form ISO. ISO is derived from the Greek isos, meaning equal.

We can implement 3-main ISO standards. Brief information of each standard is given below.

#ISO 9001 : 2015 – Quality management systems

The potential benefits to an organization of implementing a quality management system based on this International Standard are:

  1. a) The ability to consistently provide products and services that meet customer and applicable statutory and regulatory requirements;
  2. b) Facilitating opportunities to enhance customer satisfaction;
  3. c) Addressing risks and opportunities associated with its context and objectives;
  4. d) The ability to demonstrate conformity to specified quality management system requirements.

This International Standard employs the process approach, which incorporates the Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) cycle and risk-based thinking. The process approach enables an organization to plan its processes and their interactions. The PDCA cycle enables an organization to ensure that its processes are adequately resourced and managed and those opportunities for improvement are determined and acted on. Risk-based thinking enables an organization to determine the factors that could cause its processes and its quality management system to deviate from the planned results, to put in place preventive controls to minimize negative effects and to make maximum use of opportunities.

In this International Standard, the following verbal forms are used:

— “shall” indicates a requirement;

— “should” indicates a recommendation;

— “may” indicates a permission;

— “can” indicates a possibility or a capability.

Information marked as “NOTE” is for guidance in understanding or clarifying the associated requirement.

#ISO 14001 : 2015 – Environment management systems

Achieving a balance between the environment, society and the economy is considered essential to meet the needs of today without compromising ability of future generations to meet their needs.  The purpose of this International Standard is to provide organizations with a framework to protect the environment and respond to changing environmental conditions in balance with socio-economic needs. It specifies requirements that enable an organization to achieve the intended outcomes it sets for its environmental management system. A systematic approach to environmental management can provide top management with information to build success over the long term and create options for contributing to sustainable development by:

— protecting the environment by preventing or mitigating adverse environmental impacts;

— mitigating the potential adverse effect of environmental conditions on the organization;

— assisting the organization in the fulfillment of compliance obligations;

— enhancing environmental performance;

— controlling or influencing the way the organization’s products and services are designed, manufactured, distributed, consumed and disposed by using a life cycle perspective that can prevent environmental impacts from being unintentionally shifted elsewhere within the life cycle;

— achieving financial and operational benefits that can result from implementing environmentally sound alternatives that strengthen the organization’s market position;

— communicating environmental information to relevant interested parties.

The success of an environmental management system depends on commitment from all levels and functions of the organization, led by top management. Organizations can leverage opportunities to prevent or mitigate adverse environmental impacts and enhance beneficial environmental impacts, particularly those with strategic and competitive implications. Top management can effectively address its risks and opportunities by integrating environmental management into the organization’s business processes, strategic direction and decision making, aligning them with other business priorities, and incorporating environmental governance into its overall management system. Demonstration of successful implementation of this International Standard can be used to assure interested parties that an effective environmental management system is in place.

In this International Standard, the following verbal forms are used:

— “shall” indicates a requirement;

— “should” indicates a recommendation;

— “may” indicates a permission;

— “can” indicates a possibility or a capability.

— Information marked as “NOTE” is intended to assist

 #ISO 45001 : 2018 – Occupational Health and Safety management systems

The purpose of an OH&S management system is to provide a framework for managing OH&S risks and opportunities. The aim and intended outcomes of the OH&S management system are to prevent work related injury and ill health to workers and to provide safe and healthy workplaces; consequently, it is critically important for the organization to eliminate hazards and minimize OH&S risks by taking effective preventive and protective measures.

When these measures are applied by the organization through its OH&S management system, they improve its OH&S performance. An OH&S management system can be more effective and efficient when taking early action to address opportunities for improvement of OH&S performance.

Implementing an OH&S management system conforming to this document enables an organization to manage its OH&S risks and improve its OH&S performance. An OH&S management system can assist an organization to fulfill its legal requirements and other requirements.

The implementation of an OH&S management system is a strategic and operational decision for an organization. The success of the OH&S management system depends on leadership, commitment and participation from all levels and functions of the organization.

The implementation and maintenance of an OH&S management system, its effectiveness and its ability to achieve its intended outcomes are dependent on a number of key factors, which can include:

  1. a) top management leadership, commitment, responsibilities and accountability;
  2. b) top management developing, leading and promoting a culture in the organization that supports the intended outcomes of the OH&S management system;
  3. c) communication;
  4. d) consultation and participation of workers, and, where they exist, workers’ representatives;
  5. e) allocation of the necessary resources to maintain it;
  6. f) OH&S policies, which are compatible with the overall strategic objectives and direction of the organization;
  7. g) effective process(es) for identifying hazards, controlling OH&S risks and taking advantage of OH&S opportunities;
  8. h) continual performance evaluation and monitoring of the OH&S management system to improve OH&S performance;
  9. i) integration of the OH&S management system into the organization’s business processes;
  10. j) OH&S objectives that align with the OH&S policy and take into account the organization’s hazards, OH&S risks and OH&S opportunities;
  11. k) compliance with its legal requirements and other requirements.

The OH&S management system approach applied in this document is founded on the concept of Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA). The PDCA concept is an iterative process used by organizations to achieve continual improvement. It can be applied to a management system and to each of its individual elements, as follows:

  1. a) Plan: determine and assess OH&S risks, OH&S opportunities and other risks and other opportunities, establish OH&S objectives and processes necessary to deliver results in accordance with the organization’s OH&S policy;
  2. b) Do: implement the processes as planned;
  3. c) Check: monitor and measure activities and processes with regard to the OH&S policy and OH&S objectives, and report the results;
  4. d) Act: take actions to continually improve the OH&S performance to achieve the intended outcomes.

In this document, the following verbal forms are used:

  1. a) “shall” indicates a requirement;
  2. b) “should” indicates a recommendation;
  3. c) “may” indicates a permission;
  4. d) “can” indicates a possibility or a capability.

Information marked as “NOTE” is for guidance in understanding or clarifying the associated requirement.