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Tuesday, 18 November 2008

ISO9001 Quality Management Standard

This standard was last updated in the year 2000 and should have been reviewed last year but this was delayed until 2008.

The main changes in IS9001:2008 are as follows:

Clause 0.2 (Process approach)
Text added to emphasise the importance of processes being capable of
achieving desired outputs

Clause 1.1 (Scope)
  • Clarification that product also includes intermediate product
  • Information regarding statutory, regulatory and legal requirements

Clause 4.1 (General requirements)
  • Notes added to explain more about outsourcing
  • Types of control that may be applied to outsourced processes
  • Relationship to clause 7.4 (Purchasing)
  • Clarification that outsourced processes are still responsibility of the organisation and must be included in the quality management system

Clause 4.2.1 (Documentation)
  • Clarification that QMS documentation also includes records
  • Documents required by the standard may be combined
  • ISO 9001 requirements may be covered by more than one documented Procedure

Clause 4.2.3 (Document control)
Clarification that only external documents relevant to the QMS need to be

Clause 4.2.4 (Control of records)
Editorial changes only (better alignment with ISO 14001)

Clause 5.5.2 (Management representative)
States that this must be a member of the organisation's own management

Clause 6.2.1 (Human resources)
Clarification that competence requirements are relevant for any personnel who
are involved in the operation of the quality management system

Clause 6.3 (Infrastructure)
Includes information systems as example

Clause 6.4 (Work environment)
Clarifies that this includes conditions under which work is performed and Includes (for example physical, environmental and other factors such as noise,
Temperature, humidity, lighting, or weather)

Clause 7.2.1 (Customer related processes)
Clarifies that post-delivery activities may include:
  • Actions under warranty provisions
  • Contractual obligations such as maintenance services
  • Supplementary services such as recycling or final disposal

Clause 7.3.1 (Design & development planning)
Clarifies that design and development review, verification and validation have
distinct purposes. These may be conducted and recorded separately or in any combination as suitable for the product and the organisation

Clause 7.3.3 (Design & development outputs)
Clarifies that information needed for production and service provision includes
preservation of the product

Clause 7.5.4 (Customer property)
Explains that both intellectual property and personal data should be considered
as customer property

Clause 7.6 (Now called Control of Monitoring and Measuring equipment)
Explanatory notes added regarding the use of computer software:
"Confirmation of the ability of computer software to satisfy the intended
application would typically include its verification and configuration management
to maintain its suitability for use."

Clause 8.2.1 (Customer satisfaction)
Note added to explain that monitoring of customer perception may include input
from sources such as customer satisfaction surveys, customer data on delivered
product quality, user opinion surveys, lost business analysis, compliments, and
dealer reports

Clause 8.2.3 (Monitoring / Measurement of process)
Note added to clarify that when deciding on appropriate methods, the organisation should consider impact on the conformity to product requirements and on the effectiveness of the quality management system.

The changes are so minor and no new requirements have been introduced that little effort will be required by users of the standard to achieve certification to the 2008 standard.

Monday, 3 November 2008

Health & Safety & BS OHSAS 18001

My office is in a Business Park but on of my windows looks out on to some houses. Last week I was treated to an exhibition of all the things that builders shouldn't do.

Let me explain, the householder has sensibly decided to have cavity wall insulation installed but the workmen who arrived to do the job were rather cavalier in their attitude to health and safety. At one point one of them was standing on the apex of the attached garage leaning precariously out while holding a masonry drill; as he attempted to drill holes in the outer wall he kept losing his balance and I am amazed that he didn't fall. Some of the places he needed to drill were too high even for him and he proceeded to get a ladder from his van. Instead of using a scaffold tower, as required by law; he climbed up the ladder using one hand while dragging the electric drill with the other. I expected that, at the very least, his partner would have held the bottom of the ladder but no, he was preparing the equipment for injecting the foam insulation.

I am fairly sure that these two were not operating their company health and safety policies but were just lazy.

I had to go out to visit a client so I do not know how it all ended. I hope that it did not end in tears.

It is hardly surprising to know that the majority of industrial accidents occur on building sites and most involve some sort of powered tool.

I wish these two lads a long and healthy life but if their performance recently was anything to go by, I think that very optimistic. While I realise that youth seem to think they are totally invulnerable, I was young once myself after all, the safeguards offered by the modern health and safety legislation are not designed to restrict personal freedom, they can, and often do, save lives.

Before undertaking any work of this type they should have carried out a risk assessment, not a huge job given then task in hand. Then they should have used the correct protective equipment and safe working practices.

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