ISO 9000 standards create a blueprint for organizations to pursue “continuous improvement.” It’s a management practice that implies no company should ever be satisfied with the conditions of a process at the given moment, and management should always be looking for ways to improve the process.
Within the ISO 9000 family of standards, ISO 9001 is the only standard that allows for certification. For more than 30 years, ISO 9001 has served as an international benchmark that specifies requirements for the continuous improvement of products and services.
Organizations committed to obtaining ISO certification set in place standards for safe operating practices, strong customer service approaches, and methods to improve operations through a quality management system (QMS). Any organization—large or small and regardless of industry—can achieve this certification. According to ISO, over one million companies in more than 170 countries are certified to ISO 9001.
When sourcing globally or even vetting different suppliers, this certification designates that the organization consistently delivers high quality product.
In the spirit of continuous improvement, ISO issues new versions of ISO 9001 about every 10 years. The latest version, ISO 9001:2015, outlines a process-oriented approach to documenting the structure, responsibilities, and procedures required to achieve an effective QMS. Specific sections of the standard contain information on topics such as:
- QMS requirements, including documentation of a quality manual, document control, and process interaction considerations
- Responsibilities of management
- Management of resources, including human resources and an organization’s work environment
- Service development, including steps from design to delivery
- Customer satisfaction
- Measurement, analysis, and improvement of the QMS through activities like internal audits and corrective and preventive actions
Additionally, ISO 9001 requirements can be tailored to meet specific contractual situations, depending on the complexity of the product and other factors.
The key to ongoing certification under this standard is establishing, maintaining, and improving organizational structure, responsibilities, procedures, and processes to satisfy ISO 9001:2015 requirements — in short, to make the best possible product.
These standards lay out a good foundation for business development and growth. Recently, Saginaw Industries elected to put our process through the test of ISO 9001:2015 certification. We identified the latest ISO 9001 standard as a strategic way to build our business.
Currently, regardless of a part’s complexity, we monitor progress through each stage of production, from design to development to testing to assembly to client feedback. We analyze part design and make recommendations or modifications based on key requirements including product usage and function. This is to ensure we create an exceptional experience for our clients. While our current process is performing well, it’s time to polish some documents, prepare them to ISO 9001 standards, and have a registrar evaluate our QMS.
We’re working to achieve this status because what we design and manufacture ultimately becomes the foundation for what our clients design and manufacture.
The design engineers at Saginaw Industries have been designing parts and fixtures for over 20 years, and we utilize state-of-the-art software including Unigraphics (UGNX) Modeling Software. Furthermore, we use a Brown & Sharpe Coordinate Measuring Machine running PC-DMIS validation software to monitor our machining performance to the data or print developed with or provided by our client.
We’ll work closely with your team to develop the optimal product to fit your needs. To discuss specific requirements for your next project, reach out to Saginaw Industries today.