ISO 9001:2015
Leadership Commitment and Top Management Video

Leadership and Top Management

ISO 9001:2015 Leadership Commitment and Top Management
Warren explains the ISO 9001:2015 requirements for QMS Leadership Commitment and the demonstration of conformity by Top Management.

Posted: 2016-03-26
Format: Mp4
Duration: 34:29
Tags: ISO 9001:2015 Leadership Commitment, Top Management, QMS accountability and effectiveness, Risk-based Thinking, PDCA, interested parties, context of the organization, QMS scope, risks and opportunities, quality policy, quality objectives, monitoring and measuring, documented information, customer satisfaction, analysis and evaluation, management review

ISO 90001:2015

This will explain some of the changes and introduce new terminology used in the ISO 90001:2015 Quality Management System (QMS) requirements. Leadership is expected at all levels of an organization. Leadership establishes the unity of purpose and direction while creating the conditions in which people are engaged in achieving quality objectives. This enables alignment of strategies, policies, processes, and resources and improves communication and increases effectiveness and efficiency in the organization.

The standard also differentiates between Leadership and Top Management. Top Management is defined as the person or group who directs and controls organization at the highest possible level, having the ability to delegate their authority and also provide resources. They are ultimately accountable for the successful implementation of the Quality Management System and its continuing effectiveness.

Engagement of people (competent, empowered, and engaged) at all levels of the organization is essential to enhance the organization's capabilities while creating and consistently delivering value to the customer and other interested parties. Leadership is required to determine and ensure necessary competence for those who are performing the work. Leadership should recognize and acknowledge people's contributions, learning, and improvement and promote personal development to facilitate engagement.

The ISO 90001:2015 standard requires the demonstration of Leadership commitment by the members of Top Management and there is special accountability for Quality Management System effectiveness. In the past, things may have been delegated to lower levels of the organization, creating a situation where the responsible person (delegate) did not have the authority or span of control to cause changes to occur that would ensure the QMS remained effective. ISO 9001:2015 places the accountability squarely on Leadership and Top Management for QMS effectiveness.

There are several sections of the standard which speak to the organization considering or establishing certain criteria or requirements for the QMS. When the term organization is used, it is refers to Leadership; more especially Top Management. Leadership exists at all levels of the organization whereas Top Management is the very top layer of the organization. Top Management is ultimately responsible for the effectiveness of the QMS. Leadership and Top Management will need to clearly define policies, provide resources, establish and communicate objectives, ensure predictable and consistent processes are created. Leadership in Top Management must ensure there are measurements and metrics to evaluate and analyze. Audits, validation, and verification will evaluate the controls of the processes and also the fitness of products. The information is communicated to Leadership and Top Management so actions may be taken to ensure the QMS is effective. Leadership and Top Management must establish the context of the organization and determine external and internal issues that may affect the strategy and also define the purpose of the organization.

Leadership and Top Management must also understand the needs and expectations of interested parties. This begins by identifying interested parties of the QMS. Once identified, the organization must monitor and review information about these interested parties and their relevant requirements. This is an iterative process and also an input to Risk-based Thinking. In clause 4.3, Leadership and Top Management must determine the boundaries and applicability of the Quality Management System's scope, the risks and opportunities that can affect conformity of the products and/or services, and the ability to enhance customer satisfaction must be determined and addressed. The focus must be on enhancing customer satisfaction however, nothing will replace meeting the customer's basic requirements. Organizations should never find themselves in a position of having to offer something free, rebates, or discounts to make up for not meeting the customer basic requirements.

Customer satisfaction and the perception of the customer reminds everyone that social media can be a wonderful tool however, it can also be a death knell. This should always be considered, not only when using social media but in dealing with negative comments from your customers. This negative feedback will certainly affect the business. The 2015 standard also requires the Quality Objectives to have clear plans of action (execution plans). As part of effectiveness, if they are not on track to achieve the objectives, Top Management should have a corrective action plan to get them back on course to achieve the objective.

Warren Alford
Cybersecurity and Quality Management

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