ISO | What is ISO | ISO Awareness | ISO 9001:2015 | ISO 9001 | ISO 9001 2015 | ISO 45001 Meaning | ISO 45001 | ISO 50001 | ISO 50001 Meaning

ISO stands for International Organization for Standardization, which is an independent and non-governmental organization that develops and publishes standards to ensure quality, safety, and efficiency of products and services. In this article, we will explore the purpose of ISO, its popular standards, the history of ISO, and the requirements for ISO 9001:2008.

    What is ISO?

    ISO, which stands for International Organization for Standardization, is a non-governmental and independent organization that develops and publishes standards for products, services, and systems to ensure quality, safety, and efficiency. It was founded in 1947 and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. ISO's standards are recognized globally and are used by industries, governments, and consumers to ensure consistency and quality.

    Popular ISO Standards

    ISO has developed over 23,000 standards, covering various fields such as technology, food safety, quality management, and environmental management. Some of the popular ISO standards are:

    ISO 9000 Quality Management

    ISO 9000 is a family of standards that defines the requirements for a quality management system. It helps organizations to meet customer needs and improve the overall efficiency of their business operations.

    ISO 14000 Environmental management is another popular standard from the ISO. This standard provides a framework for organizations to implement an environmental management system. It covers a range of topics, including environmental policy, planning, implementation, operation, and performance evaluation.

    ISO 3166 Country codes is a standard that defines codes for identifying countries and their subdivisions. It provides a unique code for each country and is widely used in various applications, including addressing and internet domain names.

    ISO 26000 Social responsibility is a standard that provides guidelines for organizations to operate in a socially responsible manner. It covers topics such as human rights, labor practices, the environment, fair operating practices, consumer issues, and community involvement.

    ISO 50001 Energy management is a standard that helps organizations to establish an energy management system. It provides a framework for improving energy performance, including energy efficiency, use, and consumption.

    ISO 31000 Risk management is a standard that provides guidelines for managing risks in organizations. It covers the process of risk management, including identifying, assessing, treating, monitoring, and reviewing risks.

    ISO 22000 Food safety management is a standard that helps organizations to ensure the safety of their food products. It covers the entire food supply chain, from raw materials to final products, and provides a framework for managing food safety hazards.

    ISO 27001 Information security management is a standard that helps organizations to manage the security of their information assets. It covers topics such as information security policies, risk management, access controls, and incident management.

    ISO 45001 Occupational health and safety is a standard that helps organizations to manage the health and safety of their employees. It covers topics such as hazard identification, risk assessment, and control, as well as legal and other requirements related to occupational health and safety.

    ISO 45001 Meaning | ISO 45001

    What is Standardization?

    Standardization is the process of developing and implementing technical standards. It involves the creation of a set of guidelines or specifications that provide a common framework for the development, manufacture, and distribution of products or services.

    The need for standardization arises from the fact that different organizations may have different ways of doing things. This can lead to inefficiencies, inconsistencies, and potential risks. Standardization helps to maximize compatibility, interoperability, safety, repeatability, or quality. It can also facilitate commoditization of formerly custom processes.

    Brief History of ISO

    ISO was founded in February 1947 and is a voluntary organization whose members are recognized authorities on standards, each one representing one country. Members meet annually at a General Assembly to discuss ISO's strategic objectives. The organization is coordinated by a Central Secretariat based in Geneva.

    ISO 9001:2008

    ISO 9001:2008 is a standard developed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) that outlines the requirements for a quality management system (QMS). It specifies the criteria for organizations to demonstrate their ability to consistently provide products and services that meet customer and regulatory requirements, and to enhance customer satisfaction through the effective application of the system, including processes for continual improvement.

    The ISO 9001:2008 standard is organized into eight clauses:

    1. Scope: This clause defines the scope of the QMS and the standard.
    2. Normative References: This clause lists the references to other standards that are applicable to the QMS.
    3. Terms and Definitions: This clause provides definitions for terms used throughout the standard.
    4. Quality Management System: This clause outlines the general requirements for a QMS, including the documentation requirements, management responsibility, and the requirements for planning and implementing the QMS.
    5. Management Responsibility: This clause outlines the responsibilities of top management for the QMS, including the establishment of a quality policy and objectives, communication of the policy and objectives to the organization, and the review of the QMS to ensure its continuing suitability, adequacy, and effectiveness.
    6. Resource Management: This clause outlines the requirements for the management of resources, including human resources, infrastructure, and work environment.
    7. Product Realization: This clause outlines the requirements for the planning and control of the processes related to the provision of products and services.
    8. Measurement, Analysis and Improvement: This clause outlines the requirements for monitoring, measuring, analyzing, and improving the QMS, including the use of internal audits, corrective and preventive actions, and management review.
    ISO 9001:2008 was replaced by ISO 9001:2015, which introduced some significant changes to the standard. However, organizations that are still certified to ISO 9001:2008 can continue to use their certification until September 2018, after which they will need to transition to the new standard.

    ISO 9001:2015

    ISO 9001:2015 is an international standard that provides a framework for organizations to establish, implement, maintain, and continually improve their quality management system (QMS). The purpose of a QMS is to ensure that an organization consistently delivers products or services that meet customer and regulatory requirements, while also aiming to enhance customer satisfaction.
    ISO 9001:2015

    The ISO 9001:2015 standard consists of ten clauses that outline the requirements for a QMS. These clauses cover a range of areas, including:

    1. Scope: This clause defines the scope of the quality management system (QMS) and identifies the products, services, and processes that the organization intends to include within the QMS. It also outlines the context of the organization and the needs and expectations of interested parties.
    2. Normative References: This clause specifies any external standards or documents that the organization needs to adhere to in order to meet the requirements of the ISO 9001:2015 standard.
    3. Terms and Definitions: This clause defines key terms used in the standard to ensure a common understanding among all parties involved in the QMS.
    4. Context of the Organization: This clause requires the organization to identify the internal and external issues that affect its ability to achieve the intended outcomes of its QMS, as well as the needs and expectations of interested parties. Based on this information, the organization needs to determine the scope of its QMS and establish quality objectives.
    5. Leadership: This clause outlines the requirements for top management to demonstrate leadership and commitment to the QMS, including establishing a quality policy, assigning roles and responsibilities, and ensuring the availability of resources.
    6. Planning: This clause requires the organization to plan and document the processes needed to achieve its quality objectives, including risk management and contingency planning.
    7. Support: This clause covers the resources needed to operate and maintain the QMS, including human resources, infrastructure, and environmental conditions. It also includes requirements for documented information, including records and procedures.
    8. Operation: This clause outlines the processes for delivering products and services in accordance with customer requirements and the organization's quality objectives. This includes planning and control of processes, product design and development, and supplier management.
    9. Performance Evaluation: This clause requires the organization to monitor, measure, analyze, and evaluate the performance of its QMS, including customer satisfaction, internal audits, and management review.
    10. Improvement: This clause outlines the requirements for continuous improvement of the QMS, including corrective action, preventive action, and innovation. It also emphasizes the need for the organization to use data and information to drive improvement efforts.
    Organizations can use the ISO 9001:2015 standard to assess the effectiveness of their QMS and identify areas for improvement. By achieving ISO 9001:2015 certification, an organization can demonstrate to customers and stakeholders that they are committed to delivering high-quality products or services and continually improving their processes.

    ISO 50001 | ISO 50001 Meaning

    ISO 50001 is an international standard for Energy Management Systems (EnMS). It provides a framework that organizations can follow to improve energy efficiency, reduce costs, and enhance their environmental performance. The standard outlines the requirements for an EnMS, including establishing energy policies and objectives, implementing energy performance indicators, conducting energy reviews and audits, and continuously improving energy performance. By implementing ISO 50001, organizations can systematically manage energy use and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, contributing to a more sustainable future.

    Following are all the clauses of ISO 50001:2018 with an expanded explanation of each one:

    ISO 50001 | ISO 50001 Meaning

    1. Scope: This clause outlines the purpose and scope of the ISO 50001 standard. It establishes the requirements for an energy management system (EnMS) and provides a framework for organizations to improve energy performance and reduce energy costs.
    2. Normative references: This clause lists the other relevant standards and guidelines that are referenced in ISO 50001.
    3. Terms and definitions: This clause defines the terms used in the standard to ensure common understanding and interpretation.
    4. Context of the organization: This clause requires the organization to identify and understand its internal and external context and how it affects energy performance.
    5. Leadership: This clause outlines the responsibilities of top management in establishing and maintaining the EnMS, including establishing an energy policy and objectives, ensuring energy performance is communicated and integrated into organizational processes, and providing resources for energy management.
    6. Planning: This clause requires the organization to establish a process for identifying energy performance improvement opportunities, setting energy objectives, and developing plans to achieve those objectives.
    7. Support: This clause outlines the resources, information, and documentation required to support the EnMS, including communication, competency, awareness, and documented information.
    8. Operation: This clause outlines the implementation of energy management plans, including design, procurement, and implementation of energy-efficient technologies and practices.
    9. Performance evaluation: This clause requires the organization to monitor and measure energy performance, assess the effectiveness of the EnMS, and identify opportunities for improvement.
    10. Improvement: This clause requires the organization to take action to continually improve energy performance and the effectiveness of the EnMS through corrective actions, management reviews, and continual improvement processes.



    • Product is defined as “result of a process) •Process is defined as “set of interrelated or interacting activities, which transforms inputs into outputs
    • If the term process is replaced by its definitions 
    • Product then becomes “result of a set of interrelated or interacting activities which transforms inputs into outputs”


    • Degree to which a set of inherent characteristics fulfils requirements 
    • The term “quality” can be used with adjectives such as poor, good or excellent.
    • “inherent, as opposed to “assigned”, means existing in something, especially as a permanent characteristics. 
    • Requirement •need or expectation that is stated, generally implied or obligatory
    • “Generally implied” means that it is custom or common practice for the organization, its customers and other interested parties , that the need or expectation under consideration is implied. 
    • Qualifiers can be used to denote a specific type of requirement, eg product requirement, quality management requirement, customer requirement. 
    • Specified requirement is one that is stated, for example in a document  
    • Requirements can be generated by different interested parties  

    Terms relating to documentation 

    • Information meaningful data • document information  and its supporting medium 
    • Example record , specification ,  procedure document, drawing, report standard. 
    • The medium can be paper magnetic, electronic or optical computer disc, photograph or master sample or a combination thereof. 
    • A set of documents, for examples specifications and records, is frequently called “documentation”
    • Some requirements  (eg. The requirement to be readable) relate to all types of documents, however there can be different requirements for specifications (e.g. The requirement to be revision controlled) and records (e.g. The requirement to be retrievable).•specification document  stating requirements  
    • Specification can be related to activities (e.g. Procedure document, process specification and test specification) or products  (e.g. Product specification, performance specification and drawing)

    Record :

    • Document  stating results achieved or providing evidence of activities performed.
    • Records can be used, for example, to document traceability  and to provide evidence of verification   preventive action  and corrective action  
    • Generally records need not be under revision control. 

    Quality policy : 

    • Overall intention and direction of an organization  related to quality  as formally expressed by top management 
    • Generally the quality policy is consistent with the overall policy of the organization and provides a framework for  the setting of quality objectives   
    • Quality management principles presented in this international standard can form a basis for the establishment of a quality policy.  

    Quality Objective: 

    • Something sought or aimed for, related to quality 
    • Quality objectives are generally based on the organization’s quality policy  
    • Quality objectives are generally specified for relevant functions and levels in the organization  

    Continual improvement : 

    • Recurring activity to increase the ability to fulfill requirements  
    • The process  of establishing objectives and finding opportunities for improvement is a continual process through the use of audit findings  and audit conclusions  analysis of data, management reviews  or other means and generally leads to corrective action  or preventive action.  

    Corrective action :  

    • Action to eliminate the cause of a detected nonconformity   or other undesirable situation.
    • There can be more than one cause for a nonconformity. 
    • Corrective action is taken to prevent recurrence whereas preventive action   is taken to prevent occurrence. 
    • There is a distinction between correction  and corrective action. 
    • Preventive action  action to element the cause of a potential nonconformity   or other undesirable potential situation. 
    • There can be more than one cause for a potential nonconformity.
    • Preventive action is taken to prevent occurrence whereas corrective action s taken to prevent recurrence. 
    • Inspection determination of one or more characteristics  according to a procedure  Verification confirmation through the provision of objective evidence  that specified requirements  have been fulfilled. 
    • The term “verified” is used to designate the corresponding status. 
    • Confirmation can comprise  activities such as 
    • Performing alternative calculations, 
    • Comparing a new  design specification  with a similar proven design specification.
    • Undertaking tests   and demonstrations, and 
    • Reviewing documents prior to issue. •Validation  confirmation, through the provision of objective evidence  that the requirements  for a specific intended use or application have been fulfilled.
    • The term “validated” is used to designate the corresponding status. 
    • The use conditions for validation can be real or simulated. 


    What is the purpose of ISO?

    The purpose of ISO is to develop and promote international standards that can help organizations of all types and sizes to achieve their objectives and improve their operations. ISO standards cover a wide range of areas, from quality management to environmental management, and they provide a framework for best practices that can help organizations to become more efficient, effective, and competitive.

    Who can benefit from ISO standards?

    ISO standards can benefit a wide range of organizations, including businesses, government agencies, non-profit organizations, and academic institutions. Any organization that wants to improve its operations, reduce risks, enhance its reputation, or comply with legal or regulatory requirements can benefit from implementing ISO standards.

    How are ISO standards developed?

    ISO standards are developed by experts from around the world who participate in technical committees and working groups. These experts represent a wide range of stakeholders, including industry associations, government agencies, consumer groups, and academic institutions. ISO standards are developed through a consensus-based process that involves public consultation and peer review.

    What are the benefits of ISO certification?

    ISO certification can provide a number of benefits for organizations, including:
    1. Improved quality of products or services
    2. Enhanced customer satisfaction
    3. Increased operational efficiency
    4. Better risk management
    5. Improved regulatory compliance
    6. Enhanced reputation and credibility
    7. Access to new markets and business opportunities

    Can ISO standards be used internationally?

    Yes, ISO standards are designed to be used internationally. ISO is a global organization that develops standards that can be used in any country, and ISO standards are recognized and accepted by governments, industry associations, and other stakeholders around the world. This means that organizations that implement ISO standards can benefit from improved operations and increased opportunities for international trade and cooperation.


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