Since the updated version of the long-used international standard for Quality Management Systems was released late last year, many organisations have been uncertain about the impact on their business, their quality management processes, and third-party certification. What needs to be done? How do we go about it? QRMC provides some guidance here.
Organisations with current ISO 9001 certification have up to 3 years from release of the ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management Systems standard in which to transition their existing certification. As the standard was published on 23 September 2015, any organisation with a current certificate has until September 2018 to transition.
Whilst there are no specific requirements for transitioning, the most efficient way will be to transition prior to a recertification process. Typically an ISO 9001 certificate is issued for three years after an initial full certification audit by a Conformity Assessment Body. Interim surveillance audits are then conducted by the Conformity Assessment Body either annually or every six months. These are not full system audits but focus on key elements of the Quality Management System. At the end of the 3-year cycle, a full re-certification audit is then conducted and a new certificate issued. Depending on where an organisation is within that 3-year cycle, management can determine the best timing for transition to the ISO9001:2015.
The transition process will vary depending on the nature of the business and the complexity of the Quality Management System (QMS), however the diagram below provides an overview to transitioning to the new standard.
Whilst there is a three-year transition period to migrate the requirements of the current Quality Management Systems to the new version of the Standard, the revisions are designed to improve business performance and so it would benefit organisations to start the transition process early. And don’t forget (if your organisation is third-party certified) to maintain compliance with your ISO 9001:2008 certification requirements whilst transitioning to the 2015 Standard.
Please contact QRMC for more information or assistance to transition your organisation.