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ISO 9001

What is ISO 9001?

ISO 9001:2000 is an international standard that gives requirements for an organization's Quality Management System ("QMS"). It is part of a family of standards published by the International Organisation for Standardisation ("ISO") often referred to collectively as the "ISO 9000 series". For this reason, you may sometimes hear your suppliers refer to being "ISO 9000 certified", or having an "ISO 9000-compliant QMS". This will normally mean that they are claiming to have a QMS meeting the requirements of ISO 9001:2000, the only standard in the ISO 9000 family that can be used for the purpose of conformity assessment. It is important to understand however, that ISO is the body that develops and publishes the standard - ISO does not "certify" organizations, as will be explained later in this brochure.

The objective of ISO 9001:2000 is to provide a set of requirements that, if they are effectively implemented, will provide you with confidence that your supplier can consistently provide goods and services that:

- Meet your needs and expectations and
- Comply with applicable regulations

The requirements cover a wide range of topics, including your supplier's top management commitment to quality, its customer focus, adequacy of its resources, employee competence, process management (for production, service delivery and relevant administrative and support processes), quality planning, product design, review of incoming orders, purchasing, monitoring and measurement of its processes and products, calibration of measuring equipment, processes to resolve customer complaints, corrective/preventive actions and a requirement to drive continual improvement of the QMS. Last but not least, there is a requirement for your supplier to monitor customer perceptions about the quality of the goods and services it provides.

ISO 9001:2000 does not specify requirements for the goods or services you are purchasing. That is up to you to define, by making clear your own needs and expectations for the product. You might, for example, refer to product specifications, drawings, national or international product standards, supplier's catalogues or other documents as appropriate.