ISO 9001 : 2008
January 4, 2012
The same week in November that some of the deegee team were exhibiting at SPS/IPC/Drives in Nuremberg, the rest of the business hosted a UL auditor for the triennial ISO9001:2008 audit. During triennial audits the complete Quality Management System is interrogated, and a decision taken whether to re-issue certification for a further 3 years.
Deegee has had a certified Quality Management System for many years, being one of the first SMEs to realise its value as a business development tool. Rather than take the view of some companies that it is a collection of paperwork which gets dusted-off every year for the external audit, deegee have embraced it as the backbone of the company, on which everything we do and how we behave hangs.
Instead of holding annual Management Review Meetings, the agenda of the company’s Monthly Team Meeting covers each of the key sections of the standard as an indicator of how the business is performing. Having introduced Critical Success Factors relating to each area of the ISO standard, the business has a quantitative measure of Customer Satisfaction, reaching far beyond a Customer Feedback Form. “Is the customer satisfied?” is the question ISO 9001:2008 is fundamentally trying to answer.
The UL Auditor was staggered at how deegee is using the Quality Management System in these ways, transforming what is often still treated as a “bolt-on” for companies into a core strategic business tool. He had never seen the standard implemented in such a way, stating that “the Critical Success Factors are really it, an absolute measure of whether the [Quality Management] System is working”.
The Auditor was also extremely complimentary about the standard of knowledge of the business’ operations and objectives amongst all of the staff he interviewed during the audits. Wendy Whiten, Operations Director said after being told that the recommendation was for the certificate to be re-issued, “It is essential that the business maintains its ISO certification, but to do so with such a positive report makes me so proud of all the team.”