Mitigating Business Risks One Step At A Time

The International Organisation for Standardisation, better known as ISO, is the world’s largest publisher of industry standards. This organisation is known for having developed a set of best practices for industries to follow. From quality assurance to environmental management, these standards can be applied across businesses and sectors.

One of the key benefits of achieving ISO certification is being able to ensure consistency. This might not sound very exciting, but consistency is the reason behind the success of fast-food franchises and courier companies, amongst many others.

These standards provide small and large businesses with the tools they need to identify, evaluate, and address both risks and opportunities within their operations. They are a structured way to facilitate and encourage actions for continual improvement.

Benefits of ISO certification

Having an ISO standard is also a badge of quality. In a world where the need for trustworthy organisations has never been greater, ISO certifications are a quality mark that transcends language and geographical borders. Using more practical terms, this means that an ISO-certified organisation has a higher likelihood of international deals, particularly in far-flung countries.

To date, there are more than 21,500 standards along with 780 technical bodies. 165 nations form part of ISO, making it the natural authority for standardisation.

In the following sections, we outline the main ISO standards which are likely to be of interest to your organisation.

Our Top 10 ISO Certifications

ISO 9001 - Quality Obsessed

ISO 9001 is the most popular ISO standard and focuses on a Quality Management System(QMS). Over a million organisations in the world have already attained this standard, with more joining each year. This is a standard that helps businesses and other entities match the expectations of their customers and partners effectively.

The ISO quality management standard is built upon seven key principles. These are:

  • Leadership
  • Improvement
  • Customer focus
  • Process approach
  • Engagement of people
  • Relationship management
  • Evidence-based decision making

These principles are centred around the customer and include involvement from top management. They strive to create a corporate culture that pushes for continual improvement. Whilst no principle is more or less important, it can play a bigger or smaller role in a particular organisation at a particular moment in time.

Does your organisation need ISO 9001?

It is safe to say that if your organisation has clients, staff, partners or stakeholders, it can benefit from becoming ISO 9001 certified.

The benefits of this standard include providing your business with increased credibility and operating at a higher level of efficiency. You will also be able to deliver improved customer satisfaction and greater employee engagement.

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ISO 14001 - Waste Not

ISO 14001 is the standard for an Environmental Management System (EMS). It provides the necessary framework to allow organisations to contribute towards the environmental pillars of sustainability. In fact, this standard helps organisations enact the United Nations definition of sustainability, “Meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.” Naturally, this has both an environmental impact, as well as a financial one. Reducing waste of raw materials and complying with environmental regulations can have a beneficial effect on an organisations cash flow.

As with other ISO standards, the process of attaining ISO 14001 certification will include an in-depth analysis of your organisation and operations. This analysis will help lead towards identifying opportunities to save costs by either eliminating or replacing resources, or using them in a better way. The standard will also help your management team to play a primary role in controlling and quantifying the environmental impact of the business.

Does your organisation need ISO 14001?

The importance of appearing to be environmentally sustainable is apparent worldwide, but in reality, it is difficult for outsiders to properly gauge if your enterprise is truly doing its part.

Getting ISO 14001 certified will not only help your organisation achieve an improved environmental impact and waste reduction but will also act as a credible mark of your efforts and achievements.

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ISO 27001 - Protect IT

ISO 27001 is the international standard for an Information Security Management System (ISMS). It is based on the principles of CIA, confidentiality, integrity, and availability. In essence, this means that it helps organisations protect their most valuable and sensitive information whilst making them accessible to individuals with the proper authorisation. This standard applies a risk management process to the interactions between staff members, operations, and I.T. systems.

Many people incorrectly believe that ISO 27001 is simply a GDPR-related standard. In fact, this is only a secondary benefit of a much more powerful and useful framework. ISO 27001 certified organisations are able to better protect their intellectual property, brand, and reputation. Combined, these three elements make up the reasons behind an organisation’s success, so they are certainly worth protecting.

Given its capabilities, it is hardly surprising that ISO 27001 is amongst the most popular ISO standards. So far, over 33,000 certificates have been issued.

Does your organisation need ISO 27001?

Cyberattacks and data leaks have only increased in recent years. The reputational and operational damage which come as a result of having suffered a data breach can be incalculable.

It is not an overstatement to say that any organisation which stores or handles sensitive data should become ISO 27001 certified.

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ISO 45001 - Safety First

ISO 45001 is the standard for Occupational Health and Safety. It is a particularly important standard since it can quite literally save lives and prevent injuries. Over 7,600 people around the world die as a result of work-related accidents or diseases. This number would be terrible enough if it were an annual figure, but it is actually a daily one.

This OH&S management system is intended to equip an organisation with the knowledge and best practices to provide a safe and healthy workplace. As a result, the enterprise’s OH&S performance will continually improve, leading to a reduction in work-related injuries and illness as a result of work.

This international safety standard is built upon labour standards and conventions created over decades across the globe. It takes into account the specific operations of a particular organisation and helps stakeholders identify and mitigate possible risks. Being ISO 45001 certified does not only lead to a more safety-conscious work environment, but it also provides a clear indication to your workforce of what their health and safety mean to you.

Does your organisation need ISO 45001?

If your organisation is involved in one or more sectors known for experiencing a significant rate of worker injuries or deaths, then becoming ISO 45001 certified should not even be a debate. In addition to allowing you to fulfil your legal requirements, obtaining this standard can enhance your overall safety precautions and your workforce’s attitude towards staying safe.

Beyond these higher-risk sectors, however, ISO 45001 can help foster awareness of health and safety concerns in any workplace. It can also help to lower insurance premiums and increase the trust of your workforce.

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ISO 17100 - Be Clear

ISO 17100 is the international standard for Translation Services Management Systems (TSMS). Unlike most other ISO standards, it is relatively focused on a specific sector. However, just like other standards, it provides the necessary framework to ensure quality translations irrespective of languages used or where such services are offered.

This translation standard defines the translator and revisor competencies, the translation process as well as the associated technical resources and level of quality. As with other ISO standards, it helps build trust between a customer and an unknown service provider who may be located on the other side of the globe.

The need for ISO 17100 has only increased as a result of stricter due diligence requirements within the financial sector. This internationally recognized quality mark can help ensure a seamless experience for customers in need of translation services by ensuring a professional and accurate product.

Does your organisation need ISO 17001?

If your organisation handles translation services then ISO 17100 should be on your mind. This is especially true if you are seeking to attract foreign customers and lack the broad market awareness enjoyed by major global brands.

Obtaining this certification will help define your organisation as a forward-thinking service provider with clearly defined translation processes and procedures.

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ISO 13485 - Medical Devices QMS

ISO 13485 is often seen as the primary step towards receiving approval for medical devices from EU health authorities. It provides a comprehensive quality management system for medical devices.

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ISO 22000 - Food Safety Management

ISO 22000 helps deliver trust amongst manufacturers and consumers of food hence the tagline Keeping food safe from farm to fork. This standard helps control food safety practices in order to reduce unsafe food and provide reassurance within the global food supply chain.

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ISO 18587 - Translation services — Post-editing of Machine Translation Output

ISO 18587 is a translation standard that focuses solely on human post-editing of machine translation output and competencies of post-editors. This standard is only applicable to content processed by MT systems.

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ISO 17020 - Conformity Assessment

ISO 17020 is an accreditation standard for various entities that carry out inspections. This standard covers a wide range of sectors, including electrical installations, manufacturing, and lifts.

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HACCP - Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points

HACCP is an international management system geared towards food safety. It involves the analysis and management of biological, chemical, and physical hazards which may be present from raw material production through to consumption.

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