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Is this the right time to Integrate ISO Management Systems?

Posted on September 7, 2015 in Management Systems

According to the recent surveys conducted on the application of ISO management system standards, the number of organizations certified to ISO 9001 (quality management) and ISO 14001 (environmental management) has increased steadily worldwide.

The increase is due to a growing number of Small to Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) implementing multiple management system standards in line with increasing pressure and demand from various stakeholders. As such, ISO management system standards have become a key part of an organisation's lifeline and a pre-requisite for survival in the twenty‐first century.

Management systems for quality, environment and occupational health and safety (OHS) are widely accepted to address the 3 main pillars for sustainable development.   These three pillars include economic growth, environmental integrity and social responsibility. However, in order to realise benefits from the implementation of these systems, it is a challenge for the organisation to correctly plan the system to address the organization’s issues.

The new revisions of the ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and the ISO 45001 (which is to replace OHSAS 18001) are centered on PDCA cycle with addition of risk-based thinking.  Risk-based thinking provides a unique approach for each individual organization to address its own context even though all organizations use the same ISO standard.  This unique approach will differentiate the best organizations from the masses.

In short, the ISO management system standards are not just simple management tools which specify good practices to follow, but if implemented correctly, an important key to facilitate and promote sustainable development for an organisation.

Is this the right time to adopt a management system – yes, if the organization wants to survive in the business world.

Is this the right time for integration – yes, if you have one management team and recognise the importance of focusing on the three pillars of sustainable development.

To make it even more feasible for integration, the ISO management system standards have adopted the Annex SL High Level Structure with requirements arranged into the following topics:
  • Context of the organization
  • Leadership
  • Planning
  • Support
  • Operation
  • Performance evaluation
  • Improvement
Integrating the various management systems into a single system will definitely be easier now.

Integrated Management System (IMS) is the future trend! Are you ready?


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