ISO 9000 and Organizational Learning LO14717

Barry Mallis (
19 Aug 97 07:51:07 +0000

Replying to LO14672 --

Jose-Antonio Espin writes about the race for ISO certification in Mexico.
ISO's credibility can and is being diluted. Of course, the ultimate
arbiter of ISO's successful local implementation is the customer. Having a
banner outside the main office need not mean anything special, as many
have pointed out.

Your success with the Standard's use will hinge upon the quality of the
assessing organization. Direct experience demonstrates significant
variability among assessing organizations--and even among far-flung
offices of the same group! For instance, UL Labs may have assessors whose
outlooks on the standard's interpratation differ from those of lead
assessors from TUV Essen, or from Lloyd's.

Companies who achieve (and maintain) cert. do so for many reasons, not the
least among them the customer impact. From the U.S., certification is
essential for business in many parts of Europe. ISO is a business
decision. Now, exactly HOW that decision is implemented is another tale,
one which provokes much discussion. If it's a race to receive cert. at all
costs, then there will undoubtably be a cost: lowering of Standards
application, arm-twisting, superficial deployment, etc. This is a
difficult issue at best. Companies who have truly embraced the Standards
are most likely those who would do well anyway; ISO provides an extra
lift, and focusing lens, a lever for self-examination and weakness
orientation (the latter so critical to continuous improvement).

Muchas empresas cayen en la trampa de ISO. Le cuesta trabajo bien entender
su aplicacion.

Best regards,


Barry Mallis Manager - Quality and Development ISO Internal Auditor Instructor MARKEM Corporation Keene, New Hampshire

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