The Biggest Challenges of ISO 9001 Certification – And How to Overcome Them

The Biggest Challenges of ISO 9001 Certification – And How to Overcome Them

While it’s clear that ISO 9001 certification can provide significant value for organizations, many shy away from it because of the challenges that come along with getting it right.  However, that doesn’t need to be the case.  If you are aware of the obstacles and have a good plan to navigate them, then you can unlock the value of the certification and all it brings with it.

Let’s look at some of the common challenges that trip companies up.

Lack of Buy-In.

In order to enact the sort of action that you need for a successful ISO 9001 certification you need to have the right buy-in within your organization.  To do this, you need to make a compelling case for why it is a worthy use of time and resources.  Identify the sales that were lost or the opportunities that were forgone and try to prove tangibly just what the company is giving up by not getting certified.

Often a solid business case like this is the perfect way to get the buy-in that you need.

Lack of Understanding.

Often, resistance to ISO certification projects is due to a lack of understanding as to what it is all about and why it matters.  Management might not fully appreciate its value and this gets in the way of making progress.  Work to educate the key decision-makers about the tenets of ISO certification and this will go a long way to improving your change management across the board.

You also might need to allay fears about additional complexity that is assumed when undertaking these sorts of projects.  Your quality system should always work for you, not against you.

Lack of Accountability.

Going through the process of ISO 9001 certification is not useful unless you can maintain the systems over time.  To get this right, you’ll need to ensure that someone has ownership over the process and can lead your team along the path.  You can certainly use consultants like us here at American Global Standards to help kickstart this, but over the long term you’ll want to have internal accountability built into the way your organization runs.

Lack of Budget.

One of the biggest misconceptions of ISO 9001 certification is that it’s going to cost a lot.  And sometimes a perceived lack of budget is the main factor that stalls such a project.  What’s important to realize here is that the operational cost of getting the certification is just one side of the equation.  To give a fair assessment, you also have to identify the cost savings and additional revenue that can be unlocked as a result of this investment.

Once you do that, you’ll realize that it’s not a lack of budget that is the problem, but rather an underestimation of the value that can be unlocked.

Lack of Patience.

Doing the work to create robust and valuable systems for your ISO 9001 takes time and many leaders expect it to be completed in a much shorter timeframe than is actually possible.  You don’t want to cut corners with these sorts of projects and so it’s going to take some patience as you build what needs to be built.

But if you can cultivate that, then you’re off to the races!

Just by overcoming these common obstacles, you’ll be in a great position to undertake a successful ISO 9001 certification process. Here at American Global Standards, we are ready to help you take your first steps.  Get in touch today and let’s see how we can help!