Small businesses are not easy to lead. This is because a very small group of people are forced to look after many functions simultaneously. This includes sales and production, laws, government regulations, financial issues, supply chains, workforce, quality problems, etc. Leading a small business and to transform it into a sustainable organization indicates there is a need for consistent quality services and the consistency is require in quality, workflows and processes allowing the small businesses to think about the business improvement.
Any SME (small- to medium-sized enterprise) that keeps struggling with its regular quality issues may have fewer chances to sustain and see growth. In such a situation the only beneficial tool is ISO9001 certification for a SME. This is required to have a systematic approach provided by the ISO 9001 process. Practical implementation benefits SMEs in improving their various activities and processes.
What is ISO 9001 certification?
The standard ISO certification of ISO 9001 refers to the basic framework of any organization. It ensures good quality management system. The standard purposes are to provide customer satisfaction to higher levels, in association with supplying services or products consistently so that the customer requirements are met. It should also help in attaining business targets and goals so the profitability is maximized. The certification of ISO 9001 assists the small business in particular areas, particularly in supplier relations and business process consistency.
A few examples of ISO 9001 helping SMEs:
- ISO 9001 certification needs businesses to ensure all materials are bought from suppliers who are assessed on the basis of quality criteria. Apart from this, these suppliers at defined intervals are expected to be re-evaluated to ascertain the quality of ongoing material quality and its consistent supply chains.
- The certification of ISO 9001 helps SMEs to promote their business and also their profitability. This is possible by developing business with the customers who give importance to certification and need it as a contractual requirement.
- SMEs can use ISO 9001 to get clarity in understanding their own business by collecting all the valuable business information and mandated data by various standard requirements. The examples may include the processes of risk management, organization context, customer feedback and reviews, internal audit results and management reviews, corrective action analysis, complaints of product or services, etc.
- Developing a system on the basis of ISO 9001 means the confidence is increased regarding the stability of an organization, its reliability, data and recorded information that helps in moving forward with improvements.
Why ISO9001 should be considered a business management system
ISO 9001 refers to a quality management system standard that is a focus on the business development. Implementing ISO 9001 results in some benefits such as:
The certification of ISO 9001 promotes business opportunities with international business. This is because there are companies ready to do business only with companies ISO-certified, so a business having an ISO certification get more preference that others who do not have the certification. It means a certified SME receives more business and naturally more revenue. They enjoy fewer product failures and consistent production operations that it results in slashing on quality costs, while enjoying more profitability. Consistent quality maintained in services or products results in higher rates of customer retention and it increases customer confidence in the business, leading to business enhancement and resulting eventually in financial growth.
Increased revenue is the ISO 9001 byproduct. It helps directly the business in developing a sustainable Quality Management System resulting in better financial performance.
The certification of ISO 9001 needs the organization to classify the organizational roles, structures, and responsibilities; to ascertain awareness and competence; and to offer a suitable environment for the operations to work. An organization (SME) fulfilling the human resources standard requirements means there is higher employee motivation and satisfaction. People enjoy working in organizations that listen to them, treat well, and allow participation, as they can see personal growth, as well. The ISO 9001 expects the entire qualities fulfillment, so that a SME is a better working place for employees in comparison to other small conventional businesses minus ISO certification.
The customer requirements are based mainly on quality management principles. A customer looks in a product or service for a quality. It is the product quality that promotes buying repeatedly and the customer experience persuades a customer to return. An ISO 9001 is a business certified that boosts the confidence in customers as the customer is aware that he is dealing with a company that is internationally certified. This is the key feature allowing small businesses to stand tall among other companies lacking certifications.
Certifying your QMS as per the requirements of ISO 9001 means you are getting organized work, and getting organized indicates continual improvement, assuring a sustainable business.