The Business Value of ISO Certification

Although companies have no requirement to do so, gaining certification to one or more standards established by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) brings a bounty of benefits. Some are altruistic in nature, such as the satisfaction and positive public relations that come with ecological or social responsibility. Others are directly linked to a business’s overall performance, including operational competitiveness and internal process improvement. And, of course, there are those payoffs that are seen on the ledger sheets, such as increased sales and higher revenues.

So, just what is the purpose of the ISO standards? According to the nongovernmental agency itself, they are intended to “facilitate trade, spread knowledge, disseminate innovative advances in technology, and share good management and conformity assessment practices.” Upwards of 22,000 ISO standards have been published, with many being specific to certain products or industries. Some more frequently referenced ones apply more broadly, such as ISO … Read more...

Quality in the Automotive Industry

Each industry will have different interpretations of the concept of Quality and how to prioritize its tenets within their own field of practice, expertise and work experience. Perhaps the best fundamental principle is the definition of Quality given by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) as “the degree to which a set of inherent characteristics fulfills requirements where a requirement is a need or expectation.” This look at the Automotive sector is one in a series of blogs that provides a quick look at how the concept of Quality applies in different industries.

Automotive quality dates to Henry Ford’s vision of mass-produced vehicles that a trained workforce could rapidly assemble with consistency and precision. Today, automotive quality reflects three principles:

  • Quality in Product means the ability of the vehicle to fulfill its expected functions and behavior, such as engine efficiency, product features and environmental exhaust standards.
  • Quality in Production means
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H&S Compliance Basics: Key Regulatory Bodies, by Region

In the U.S., the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act of 1970 stipulates what employers are responsible for in the area of H&S. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), part of the U.S. Ministry of Labor, was created in 1971 to enforce the Act and amend it when necessary.

Individual U.S. states are encouraged, but not required, to establish their own safety and health administrations. In 2018, 26 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands had OSHA-approved plans. Many state plans adopt standards identical to OSHA. OSHA approves and monitors all state plans and provides up to 50 percent of the funding for each program. State-run safety and health programs must be at least as effective (ALAE) as the federal OSHA program. Twenty-two of these programs cover both private and state and local government workers. OSHA provides coverage to certain workers specifically excluded from a state plan, such … Read more...

Two Schools of Thought Combine for Best-Practice EHS Auditing

Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) auditing provides confidence to organizations that operational risks are measured through effective identification, control, monitoring and governance. Audits are conducted to gain better understanding of the management system and to evaluate the level of compliance with internal requirements and external regulations. Such audits utilize protocols to seek understanding of problems in an attempt to correct any deficiency before loss or a compliance issue is experienced.

EHS auditing is usually conducted for the following reasons:

  • Ensuring compliance to the requirements of internal, international and industry standards and regulations, and customer requirements,
  • To assess and determine the effectiveness of an implemented system in meeting specified objectives,
  • To explore opportunities for improvement,
  • To meet statutory and regulatory requirements,
  • To determine the management system risks, and,
  • To provide feedback to senior management.

There are two main schools of thought when it comes to EHS auditing. Most professionals are familiar … Read more...

What is Quality Management?

When people use the word “Quality,” it’s usually as a synonym for “good.” Many brands tout their products as “high quality” or “superior quality” in just this way without really defining what the characteristics of “Quality” are, and we’re more likely to see it in marketing material than in integral business process or policy documents. This is the first in a series of blogs that will explore the fundamental concepts of Quality and how you can apply them to your organization.

Quality is about much more than describing a product or service as “good.” Quality Management professionals see Quality as the following:

  1. Satisfying a set of explicitly or implicitly defined inherent characteristics.
  2. Providing products or service features that customers need. These features lead to customer satisfaction and exceeding customer expectations, which, in turn, lead to increased revenue for the producer. Ensuring Quality by adding features that customers want while ensuring
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EHSQ Community | OSHA and ISO 45001 Updates

Community Expert member Eric J Conn shares an update on the OSHA’s Injury and Illness Recordkeeping Data Submission and Anti-Retaliation Rule.  We invite you to join our Environmental, Health and Safety, and Quality professional community, and share your knowledge with other members.

  • OSHA’s Injury and Illness Recordkeeping Data Submission and Anti-Retaliation Rule with member Eric J Conn
  • Musculoskeletal Disorders: Is Your Workforce Protected? by Michael Kim and Matthew Marino
  • Next steps for ISO 45001 September 2017 by member Chris J Ward
  • Ask you ISO 45001 questions in our ISO 45001 OHSMS group

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EHSQ Community | ISO 45001 draft Update, and Organizational Behavior and Corporate Culture

ISO 45001 draft – update join members  Chris J Ward and Jane Standerwick as they share an update from the discussion on July 20th results ballot announcement. We invite you to join our Environmental, Health and Safety, and Quality professional community, and share your knowledge with other members.

  • ISO 45001 draft – update from July 20th results ballot announcement by Chris J Ward and Jane Standerwick
  • Organizational Behavior and Corporate Culture: The impact on Safety Management and Practices by Dr. Judith Erickson, Dave Rebbitt  and our member Jim Loud
  • Learnings from Safety Professionals: Refrigerant Rule Revisions member Tamara Parris
  • Can Relationship-Centered Safety Decrease Fatalities? by member Rosa Antonia Carrillo

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Are you Ready for ISO 9001:2015?

Three years in the making, the latest and greatest revision to the Quality Management Systems standard was published on September 23, 2015 as ISO 9001:2015.  It felt like Christmas morning waiting to get the new standard – well almost.  I’ve already purchased my copy from ASQ  for $173 USD and it was immediately available for download as a PDF once the payment processed.  I’m excited to learn more about how ISO 9001:2015 can help organizations improve and deliver value to customers in a variety of industries and markets.  For anyone that is currently certified to ISO 9001:2008, you have a 3 year grace period to become certified to the new standard’s requirements.  This means you have until September 2018 in order to adopt and demonstrate compliance to the new requirements of ISO 9001:2015.  According to a recent webinar with Quality expert Peter Merrill hosted by the ISO 9001 clubRead more...

Webinar: ISO 14001:2015 – Significant Changes on the Horizon – Are You Ready?

ISO 14001 will undergo deep revisions in this coming year. The changes are significant and will have a considerable impact on your Environmental Management Systems. In this webinar, Paul MacLean, a subject matter expert in assisting organizations achieve sustainable development and deliver on social performance commitments reviews the changes to the ISO 14001 standards. Co-host Elie Mouzon of Intelex provides an overview of how to leverage technology to address and prepare for the coming ISO 14001: 2015 changes.

This must-see webinar covers the following areas:

  • General overview of changes to ISO 14001
  • New changes that apply to all ISO Management Systems
  • The new role organizations are expected to play in preventing and managing their environmental impact
  • Tips on preparing your organization for ISO 14001: 2015
  • How technology can make ISO compliance much easier to manage

Watch a preview below or click here to watch the full webinar.

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EHS This Week: New Watchdog report, Outdoor Worker Safety and More!

On this week’s edition of EHS This Week we’ve got the week’s top stories in environment, health and safety news:

  • New watchdog report
  • NIOSH weather safety tips for outdoor workers
  • ISO 45001 updates

Remember to write us with your suggestions, questions and comments. Also, if you are an industry expert and ever want to take part in the program, we’d love to have you. Until next week, enjoy the program!

EHS This Week Resources

For more information on the stories and resources mentioned in this week’s podcast, check out the links below.

  • “Gaming the Rules: How Big Business Hijacks the Small Business Review Process to Weaken Public Protections.” Read the watchdog report here
  • NIOSH outdoor worker safety recap: Click here

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