A positive requirement of ISO9001: 2015 is that it requires positive and visible leadership.

Most organisations today tend to make the choice to go for assessment on a voluntary basis. So, by default one would expect to see a reasonable amount of commitment to start with.

The CEO or managing director of an organisation should demonstrate their resolution to the quality system by leading its inception and providing adequate resources for the programme to develop and become effective.

If the commitment wanes, then subordinates will quickly realise that the project may have no chance of long-term success. 

Watch out for projects being put back time and time again. The author would suggest that the commitment and leadership might have withered. 

Top management will be interviewed by the selected certification body. This is quite a lengthy exercise and the assessor will soon get a feel for the support and direction of the quality system. This exercise underpins the leadership and commitment stage.

The organisation should create a quality policy that is prepared and be approved by the CEO or most senior manager responsible for promoting quality.

A key task of senior management is to ensure the quality system is fully integrated within the organisation’s operations and does not sit as an add-on.

An off the shelf QA system is not the most appropriate system these days. 

The senior management should be seen to promote objectives and targets for the quality programme.

In addition, the CEO should help with the adoption of major new processes and discussion around relevant monitors and measures.

Top management should be seen to promote successes in the quality system and help where necessary with investigations into deficiencies. 

A key area where top management is involved will be at the regular management review meetings, which are discussed in another blog.

For further information and to book your ISO9001 survey please contact: Marcus J Allen at Thamer James Ltd. Email: [email protected]

Marcus has twenty years’ experience in delivering Governance, Risk and Compliance solutions to over two hundred organisations within the UK. Including over one hundred ISO9001 programmes.

Marcus holds a BSI ISO9001 lead auditor qualification and is registered on the BSI Associate Consultant Programme.

Marcus holds the respected Diploma in Governance, Risk and Compliance from the International Compliance Association and holds a master’s degree in Management Learning & Change from the University of Bristol. Marcus is a Fellow of the Institute of Consultants and Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute.