Congratulations, you have a paper of a certain quality or ISO standard hanging on your wall. Yet, the story does not end there. On the contrary, continuing to meet the applicable quality and ISO standards is a permanent assignment and a challenge for the entire company. This goal has to be part of a strong company culture in which continuous improvement based on data analysis is a focal point.
Whatever quality standard you prefer: today’s standard may already be outdated tomorrow. The society changes, the technology evolves. Every quality standard is by definition developed further and refined constantly. This constitutes two important challenges for a company.
Culture of continuous improvement
First of all, it is important to develop a culture of continuous improvement. An organisation that is constantly working in all segments on optimising and making its processes more efficient through the improvement cycle Plan, Do, Check, Act, shall experience little difficulty to remain up-to-date with changing quality and ISO standards.
These companies usually have an (internal) audit conducted on a regular basis, after which an external party confirms whether or not they are on the right track.
If this culture of improvement is lacking in a company, every alteration in the standards leads to panicky behaviour and troublesome changes.
Observing the quality and ISO standards
A second assignment on continuing to meet applicable quality and ISO standards, is proactively observing the evolutions of these standards. Every standard anticipates a thorough update every three to four years. Between the publication of the new standard and the formal audit you will have one year to implement adjustments.
However, a new version of a standard does not appear out of thin air. Prior to the update coming into effect, a draft version is made public. Everyone will be given the opportunity to provide feedback on this provisional version. However, past experience has shown that the final version hardly differs from the first proposal.
Based on this proposal text, a visionary company is able to respond to the big picture of the upcoming future standard no less than six months in advance.
Would you like to know more about the implementation of a culture of continuous improvement? Feel free to contact us with all your questions.