Some small organisations can often be put off or deterred from pursuing ISO certification because they assume that the regulations, standards and processes put in place are too heavy, strict, formal or just not relevant to a business of their size.
At JR Consultants we know from years of experience the benefits and advantages of implementing ISO can have on smaller organisations and the different ways it can positively impact every aspect of the business for the employees, customers, owners and shareholders.
What Is ISO Certification?
ISO stands for the International Organization For Standardization and is an independent, non-governmental body that develops voluntary standards that are used to ensure high levels of products safety and quality, helping to encourage innovation and consistency in the global marketplace.
There are different ISO certifications that are suitable for a wide range of industries, sectors and businesses of all types from those that relate to energy management and quality control to health and safety and many more.
These international standards of ISO can help businesses of any size and sector to increase productivity, reduce costs and access new markets.
What Are The Benefits Of ISO For Small Businesses?
Small businesses now make up a significant percentage of some of the most dynamic, innovative and exciting organisations in the country. However, the average small business can have a lot to contend with and are often unaware of the many great benefits that ISO certification can have for them and their company.
- Improved customer trust and confidence in your products or services.
- Reduced waste and environmental impact.
- Compliance with environmental and safety regulations.
- A more efficient business throughout which reduces costs across all aspects of your business.
- Increase in customer satisfaction which leads to more business.
- Meet regulation requirements at lower costs.
- Gain access to markets across the world that were previously out of reach.
- Improved product quality, consistency and traceability.
- The ability to secure contracts from international clients and organisations that only work with certified businesses.
- Being able to compete on a level playing field with larger businesses leading to improved tendering success.
For small businesses that aren’t content with just getting by and who have an ambition and willingness to grow, ISO Certification can be an effective way to improve the way you operate, fine tune the great processes you already have in place and solidify the future of your company.
What Types Of ISO Are Relevant For Small Businesses?
For smaller organisations, having a management system in place that is ISO-compliant can be a crucial advantage when managing the challenges of growth or competing for new business. The basis of all ISO standards is a cycle of continuous improvement and correlating benchmarks which evolve and to meet ever changing needs and goals.
There is a diverse range of ISO standards for which organisations can apply to their business but in regards to smaller businesses some of the most relevant would be;
ISO 9001 – Quality
ISO 9001 provides a basic framework from which organisations can build a robust Quality Management System (QMS). This works to enhance quality control, streamline workflows, effectively manage risk, improve overall customer satisfaction and simplify auditing and regulatory compliance processes. This globally recognised standard is the tool that can help small businesses improve their reputational standing with new and existing customers, suppliers and shareholders as well as move into new, desirable markets.
For those who are unsure about how ISO 9001 and small businesses relate, this standard helps companies to improve key areas that are often the most inconsistent and difficult to get right such as supplier relations, profitability and risk management processes. With ISO 9001 certification in place, small businesses are able to develop a system that provides real, tangible, reliable information and data which can be used to identify key areas of success to build upon and those that need improvement.
ISO 45001 – Health and Safety
Having an appropriate health and safety management system in place is critical for any organisation and just because a business doesn’t have thousands of employees doesn’t mean that this is not relevant. The cost and long-term reputational damage that can be caused as a result of even a minor accident suffered by an employee whilst at work can be devastating for small business owners.
ISO 45001 is a health and safety management system which any small business can implement. It makes it quick and easy to identify potential workplace hazards and helps to avoid lost productivity, mitigate risks and establish an overall culture of safety within your organisation.
ISO 14001 – Environment
High operating costs and waste are problems that many small businesses simply can’t afford not to take seriously. In addition to this, the risk of noncompliance with relevant environmental regulations can leave small businesses walking a potentially dangerous, uncertain and risky path. By outlining best environmental management practices, ISO 4001 helps organisations to mitigate their waste production without sacrificing their productivity and therefore their profits.
ISO 4001 gives small businesses the tools to identify clear environmental goals, set achievable targets and run an efficient, streamlined business that is more cost-effective.
ISO Advice For Small Businesses
No matter what industry you’re in and whether your organisation is made up of 10 employees or 100, compliance with ISO standards can help you to control costs, increase productivity and distinguish your business from the competition.
If you would like advice on what ISO is best suited to your business or if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch and one of our knowledgeable, friendly advisors will be happy to help.