About The ISO

About The ISO

International standards play a fundamental part in the majority of people’s everyday lives, and I thought that I would create this web-site to offer other individuals that have an enthusiasm in the subject of International standards, a little helpful knowledge relating to the subject.

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International Standards Organisation – Benefits of Standards for Organisations

The International Standards Organisation or ISO is an independent third party body with a membership of over 160 national country standards organisations.

Collectively, the 160 plus members pool expertise and create common global standards to underpin innovation and provide a consensual platform to solve worldwide challenges.

These standards provide “world class” specifications for systems, services and products in order to facilitate global trade by ensuring efficiency, safety and quality.

International recognised standards are developed to improve many ways of doing business including:

  • Solving problems to common problems in order to make international trade simpler
  • Making services and products safer by improving their development, manufacture and supply
  • Ensuring the governments has a common technical basis for environmental, health and safety legislation
  • Sharing “best” innovation, management and technology practices
  • Protecting users of services and products
  • Developing a fairer trading system to facilitate growing trade between nations

ISO Standards DocumentHow New ISO Standards Are Developed

Development of new and revised ISO standards is an ongoing process involving exchange of draft standards documents and a wide range of communications including formal and informal meetings, video conferences as well as the more common forms of contact like email and telephone conversations. This dialogue takes place in and between technical committees with experts who eventually reach an agreement and a new standard or revised standard is published.

Normally, an initial draft standard is subjected to a formal review and vote. All responses and feedback are then considered before subsequent drafts and reviews are conducted till a consensus is arrived at and the standard is formally ratified and made publically available for implementation by relevant organisations.
International standards are now playing an ever increasing role in global trade because they make a considerable difference to people’s lives all around the planet. They integrate a common set of service or product characteristics so that consumer expectations are met and often exceeded.

The impact of ISO standards are often unrecognised by the ordinary consumer who may take quality and efficiency for granted. But they would soon notice the difference if international standards did not exist as a result of unreliability, poor quality and environmental damage etc. Strict compliance with international standards will result in the safest services and products currently available.

ISO Standards – Ten Benefits

International standards provide wide ranging benefits to technological development, society as well as national and international economies.

  1. ISO standards ensure that materials, products, systems, services, people and processes comply with the requirement of a particular standard in order to deliver the utility required.
  2. The definition of service and product characteristics required to for international trade ensures that organisations and companies can make appropriate decisions when it comes to resource allocation.
  3. International standards accelerate the diffusion of innovations and their incorporation into new systems and products. This benefits consumers by ensuring a wide range of offerings and competitive prices from different suppliers.
  4. ISO standards improve the safety of products, vehicles, tools and machinery.
  5. Compliance with ISO standards ensures conformity of services and products with minimum requirements for reliability, safety and quality.
  6. Common international standards enable firms to sell their goods and services right across the globe because common specification of services and products leads to wide ranging international acceptance.
  7. Common international standards provide both the scientific and technological basis to underpin environmental, safety and health legislation.
  8. ISO drives and standardises assessment of conformity which leads to a global acceptance of the best practices for operational processes.
  9. ISO standards are great for the environment because they lead to an improvement in water, soil and air quality plus enhanced environmental and radiation aspects of services and products as well as reduced gas emissions.
  10. International standards remove technical barriers to trading by harmonising different national standards providing the technical basis for international trading agreements.

Using ISO Consultants

ISO ConsultantsMany companies wishing to acquire accreditation to a particular ISO standard utilise the services of specialist ISO consultants to facilitate the process.

The principal benefit of utilising an ISO consultant is to acquire a completely unbiased view of processes and operational issues from someone with wide ranging external experience of how to resolve them. Experienced consultants will be able to suggest solutions that other companies have implemented to resolve similar issues.

Here is a summary of how consultants can help organisations with their certification.

  • Speeding up the process of implementation
  • Reducing the work load or people or departments responsible for standards implementation
  • Obtain a much greater added value benefit from implementing a standard
  • Increasing the likelihood of achieving accreditation at the first time of asking

Conor Starling