The International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) is the largest publisher of standards in the world. These standards are critical for regulating business practices, manufacturing, and quality.
When businesses around the world conform to the same standards, management techniques, business processes and production controls, quality, products and services all become standardised.
ISO has published more than 21,584 standards and has members in 162 countries, and 788 technical bodies for standard development. The organisation recorded an increase in certification of 8% from 1,520,368 to 1,643,523 in 2016.
Here are 10 ISO standards and what they mean for your business.
1. ISO 9000 - Quality Management
Quality is critical to remaining competitive in any industry. The ISO 9000 family is the quality management standard, and comprises of some of ISO’s best-known standards.
ISO quality standards guide companies and equip them with the necessary tools to continuously improve quality and ensure that customer demands are always met. ISO 9001:2015 is the only standard in the category that you can be certified to, and lays down the criteria for a quality management system.
2. ISO / IEC 27000 - Information Security Management Systems
Information security is at the fore of global attention, with rapid increases in cyber threats. The 27000 category of standards ensures the safety of information assets.
These standards help organisations manage the security of assets such as intellectual property, financial and employee data, and information held in trust for third parties. ISO/IEC 27001 is the most popular standard in this category, and stipulates the specifications for the implementation of an Information Security Management System (ISMS). There are 33,290 certificates issued for this certification.
3. ISO 14000 – Environmental Management
This is a family of standards that provides the necessary tools and guidelines for companies to manage their environmental responsibilities. ISO 14001 and all other standards in this category lay emphasis on environmental systems.
Today’s business world is riddled with uncertainty. Risks facing companies have a direct impact on the economic performance, reputation, as well as safety and environmental outcomes.
ISO 31000 cannot be used for certification purposes, but it provides a framework for managing risks. It offers guidance to organisations for internal and external audit programs, and enables organisations to achieve objectives in an uncertain environment by facilitating the identification of opportunities and threats.
Organisations are able to benchmark with internationally recognised practices for effective management and corporate governance.
5. ISO 50001 - Energy Management
ISO 50001: 2011 provides guidance for companies in implementing an Energy Management System (EnMS) that aims at improving efficiency in the use of energy.
Though organisations cannot be certified to ISO 26000, the standard provides guidance on how organisations can embrace social responsibility. It clarifies what social responsibility entails for organisations to lay a framework for effective action.
7. ISO 28000: 2007 – Specifications for Security Management Systems for the Supply Chain
This standard stipulates the requirements for a security management system in respect to a supply chain. It is applicable to all types of organisations and provides guidance on all activities controlled by companies that affect supply chain security. It is crucial in the management of supply chains in manufacturing, service, storage, and transportation and so far there are 356 certifications.
8. ISO 37001: 2016 Anti-Bribery Management Systems
Bribery is a menace in today’s business world. This standard stipulates the requirements and provides guidance in establishing, implementing and continuous improvement of an anti-bribery management system. It can be a stand-alone system or can be implemented into the overall management system.
This standard is applicable to all types of organisations with respect to bribery and helps prevent, detect and respond to bribery and comply with anti-bribery laws.
9. ISO 45001 – Occupational Health and Safety
Occupational injuries and diseases impact the economy negatively due to poor health, early retirement and high insurance premiums. To manage this problem, ISO is at the development stage of ISO 45001. It will take into account international standards like OHSAs 18001 and IL-OSH guidelines. It intends to provide a framework for employee safety, reducing workplace hazards and provide safer working environments.
10. ISO 22000 – Food Management Systems
This standard facilitates the development and implementation of a food safety management system. It incorporates a wide array of standards, including 22002 for food manufacturing and 22001 for food and drink. This standard is widely used by food manufacturers, restaurants, and food transportation services. So far more than 30,000 certificates have been issued.
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