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What is ISO 9001?

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ISO 9001 is the title of a document (Standard) that outlines the requirements an organization must maintain in their quality system for ISO 9001 certification. There are several different documents in the ISO 9000 family of standards, but ISO 9001-2008 is the only ISO standard that requires certification.. ISO 9001:2008 is the most recent standard, and the "2008" references the year of latest revision.  It was previously called ISO 9001:2000, which is now obsolete (as are ISO 9002 and ISO 9003.)  and replaced by ISO 9001:2008 in the year 2008, NOTE: THESE ARE LINKS
ISO9001 is an internationally recognized Quality Management System. You may want to read: 

Read our example of ISO9001 applied to making cookies.

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Basics of ISO 9001


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ISO 9001 does NOT define the actual quality of your product or service. The standard helps you achieve consistent results and continually improve the process. Thus, if you can make a good product most of the time, this helps you make it all of the time. It's just good business practices.

"ISO 9000 Certified" is technically incorrect as ISO 9000 does not have requirements. "ISO Certified" is also incorrect, as it does not state which ISO standard you are certified too.
"ISO 9001 Certified" means an organization has met the requirements in ISO9001. It defines an ISO 9000 Quality Management System (QMS).
ISO 9001:2008 is focused on meeting customer expectations and delivering customer satisfaction so you must pay attention to the customer.
ISO9001 evaluates whether your Quality Management System is appropriate and effective, while forcing you to identify and implement improvements.
Continuous improvement assures your customers benefit by receiving products/services that meet their requirement, and that you deliver consistent performance. Internally, the organization will profit from increased job satisfaction, improved morale, and improved operational results (reduced scrap and increased efficiency). Meeting legal and regulatory requirements benefit the community. Read more about continuous improvement.

What is 9001 Quality Management versus General Management Systems

What is 9001 and what is not ISO 9001? ISO 9001 is a quality management system, not a general management system. While ISO does actually provide general management systems that help document, organize and define how a business will run its overall operations (such as ISO 26000), these systems are rarely a requirement for certain types of commerce as ISO 9001:2008 often is.

Is 9001 a Performance Benefit?

While it is hard to prove a direct correlation between ISO 9001's quality system and business performance, a number of studies like this one strongly suggest that the rigor of what is 9001 (and related quality management standards) does just that. Though not solely the reason for seeking the benefits of ISO9001 certification, there are substantive surveys showing that gaining new business was a direct result.

What is 9001's Resource Impact?

As with most business processes, the more you do yourself, the less the cost, but the more time it may require. No matter how much external resources are utilized, there will need to be involvement by your employees and staff to varying degree. While there is no total "do it yourself" solution, you can go along way on what is ISO 9001's basic requirements by using pre-formatted materials for documentation and training. While the procedures and methods in these must be tailored to your situation, they are typically created with minimizing the changes required and maximizing the ability for others to use and comprehend them. The goal of any quality mangement system should not be to add unneccesary paperwork, but to make all references clear and highly usable.

Past (Obsolete) versions of ISO 9001 Standards include: