Your Guide to Making the ISO 9001:2015 Transition

The new, improved standard for quality is here and, if you’re yet to making the transition to ISO 9001:2015, now is the time.

The ISO 9001 framework guides organisations in successfully implementing quality management systems. By achieving compliance, businesses can strategically improve their processes organisation-wide and, consequently, boost their long-term performance and reduce costs.

Compliance with ISO 9001 is internationally recognised and, because of this, is the ideal certification solution for those operating on a global scale. In addition to this, because ISO 9001 uses the Annex SL high-level structure, it can be seamlessly integrated with various other ISO standards across a range of industries.

At this stage, any organisations that have implemented ISO 9001:2008 are expected to have transitioned to the latest version of the standard. This is because, from September of 2015 when the new framework was published, businesses had a three-year period to transition and, thus, continue their compliance. 

Does Your Business Comply With the New Standard?

Before you make the ISO 9001:2015 transition, it’s important to understand how these revised guidelines differ from the previous standard. If you’re interested in gaining and maintaining ISO 9001 certification, there are various updates you will need to ensure you are aware of.

Core Clauses Have Changed

Up until the fourth clause, ISO 9001:2008 and ISO 9001:2015 remain relatively similar. However, beyond this point, there are various changes that your business will need to become familiar with if you intend to achieve certification. Each of the clauses numbered four to ten in the latest version of the standard fall into a certain category; Plan, Do, Check or Act.

ISO 9001:2008 ISO 9001:2015 Category
0.     Introduction

1.     Scope

2.     Normative References

3.     Terms and Definitions

4.     Quality Management System

5.     Management Responsibility


6.     Resource Management

7.     Product Realisation

8.     Measurement, Analysis and Improvement

0.     Introduction

1.     Scope

2.     Normative References

3.     Terms and Definitions

4.     Context of the Organisation

5.     Leadership

6.     Planning

7.     Support

8.     Operation

9.     Performance Evaluation

10.   Improvement












Greater Focus on Risk-Based Thinking

The ISO 9001:2015 guidelines place a particular emphasis on the need for organisations to regularly complete a formal risk analysis.

Rather than employing processes and strategies that are purely or predominately responsive, businesses are required to proactively assess, identify and manage risks in the workplace. In doing this, ISO 9001 compliant organisations can pinpoint specific areas of concern or challenges before issues arise.

The Benefits of Transitioning to ISO 9001:2015

While becoming ISO 9001 certified isn’t mandatory, organisations that make the transition will often enjoy various benefits. With ISO 9001, businesses can:

  • Improve business performance;
  • Introduce comprehensive risk management processes;
  • Enhance brand reputation and credibility;
  • Remove trading barriers;
  • Boost customer satisfaction and retention;
  • Reduce costs and waste;
  • Improve efficiency and effectiveness of business processes.

How to Make the ISO 9001:2015 Transition

Interested in achieving compliance with ISO 9001:2015, but not sure where to begin? Every business is different and, thus, we’d suggest getting in touch with an experienced ISO 9001 quality management system consultant to guide you through each stage of the certification process. However, by becoming familiar with the following steps, you can ensure you’re well aware of what such integration typically entails.

  1. Establish a comprehensive understanding of the new certification requirements. When completing this stage, businesses will often use a ‘correlation matrix’. This gives them the means to compare revised guidelines with ISO 9001:2008, analysing relevant findings and identifying the key changes that will impact their business.
  2. Conduct an ISO gap analysis. By successfully completing an ISO gap analysis, organisations can determine whether there are any discrepancies between their current processes and standard requirements.
  3. Develop a plan of action. Once you’ve identified where exactly improvements are necessary, you will need to create a systematic implementation plan. This details how changes will be introduced in a strategic, maintainable way.
  4. Communication is key. As you continue to implement the appropriate changes business-wide, ensuring that adjustments are clearly communicated with employees across all organisational levels is crucial. If you fail to keep staff members informed, you will likely struggle to effectively integrate lasting changes. Thus, it’s essential that your business provides adequate ISO training and ensures employees are fully aware of their role in meeting standard requirements.
  5. Implement changes, all the while regularly monitoring their level of success.

Get Your Business ISO 9001:2015 Certified

For more information, or for professional assistance in making the transition to ISO 9001:2015, speak with an expert from Integrated Compliance Solutions.

We have extensive experience helping businesses reach their compliance objectives, and can assist you in integrating an array of ISO standards with ISO 9001. These include ISO 14001, ISO 45001, ISO 13485, ISO 27001, AS 9100 and more. Take the first step in improving your organisation’s compliance by contacting our team today.

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