ISO 9001 & ISO 14001 – Centre For Assessment Ltd’s Transition Guide

Spring 2014 saw the release of the Draft International Standards for ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001:2015. The revisions and changes to these standards have been described as the most significant event since the creation of both standards. As part of Centre for Assessment’s commitment to its certified organisations, we have produced this guide as an introduction to these changes and to outline the services we will provide to assist you in your transition to the 2015 versions of the standards.

Proposed Timeline for Transition to ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001:2015:

Spring 2014: Draft International Standard (DIS) issued

Autumn 2014: deadline to make comments to Technical Committee TS176 on the DIS

Summer 2015: Final DIS expected to be released

Autumn/Winter 2015: ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001:2015 expected to be released

2016 – 2018: Expected three-year transition period beings

Annex SL – Standard High-Level Structure

One of the most important changes in the 2015 revision of the ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 Standards will be the transition to a singular common ”Annex SL” structure. This has already been implemented into the 2013 version of the ISO 27001 Standard and will also be rolled out to the ISO 45001 Standard which will replace OHSAS 18001 in 2016. Annex SL will ensure that all core requirements in management systems standards will be identical which will benefit organisations, auditors and certification bodies for Integrated Management Systems.

Updates to the Content of ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001:2015

Context of the Organisation

This new concept encourages the organisation to define the internal and external influences on its operations and how that might affect the design and implementation of their management system. Some factors in considering here would be customer expectations, the products/services it provides and wider issues such as the economic conditions it operates under.

Documentation Requirements
Another new concept in the 2015 revision is the removal of the 6 mandatory documented procedures and need for a Quality Manual. The 2015 version simply states that an organisation must keep “Documented Information”. This could be in the form of flowcharts, web pages, software or whatever format an organisation chooses.

Risk Based Approach
Section 6 of the new standard states that an organisation must consider the risks and opportunities that may affect its management system. This links in with the organisational context and ensures that risk-based thinking is factored in during the design and implementation of the system and how that will help with continuous improvement.

Involvement of Top Management
The 2015 revision now requires that top management takes a more “hands on” role in the implementation and continuous maintenance of the management system. The new standard requires that top management does not delegate actions relating to the system and must effectively engage with the key activities.

ISO 14001 - What kind of changes are expected?

The structure of ISO 14001 has been modified to follow the ‘high-level structure’ in order to ensure identical structures for all ma­nagement systems as well as the consistent use of core texts and terms (see references to ANNEX SL above). This will encourage organisations to think about environmental issues more broadly and strategically, with a highlighted focus on performance results. This will make the combined standards and integrated management system standards more efficient and ensure a smoother certification process.

It is intended that there will be five new clauses relating to:

  • Understanding the environmental context of the organisation
  • Understanding the needs and expectations of interested parties
  • External communication and reporting
  • Value chain planning and control
  • Continual improvement

ISO 9001 /14001, What can we do now?

  • It is too early in the revision process to make any significant changes to an existing management system, integrated or standalone
  • The final version of the standard may see further changes and tweaks, albeit these are expected to be minor
  • Carry out a GAP analysis and identify necessary changes in the organisation. Do you require extra training or an awareness session? Does the documentation of the management system have to be adjusted?
  • Documented and robust existing management systems will conform to the 2015 version with small adjustments, in line with continual improvement and evolution of your organisations' management systems
  • Embrace the changes as they will ensure your system is as optimised and effective as ever!

I am currently certified to ISO 9001 and/or ISO 14001...

Once the revised standard has been published in 2015, we will support you through the process to ensure it is as smooth and seamless as possible. A transition period will be set and we will provide you with guidelines and training if required.

I’m working towards and interested booking an assessment to be certified against ISO 9001 and/or ISO 14001 in the near future

ISO 9001:2008 and ISO 14001:2004 are still valid standards and your organisation will still benefit from implementing and certifying against this version of the standard. Certification to ISO 9001:2008 and 14001:2004 will be allowed for a period of time following the publication of the new version of the standard, which will be determined by UKAS upon it’s the release, and then communicated to you as swiftly and simply as possible.

Centre for Assessment’s Transition Plan

Centre for Assessment is providing all existing organisations with certificates for ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 an extensive suite of services to help the transition to the 2015 be as smooth as possible. This guide is only the introduction to our transition plan and we will be providing organisations with updates on the progress of ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001:2015. We recommend that you start to look into the changes now and this will ensure a smoother transition once the final versions of the 2015 standards have been released. Please click the link below to download copies of the draft standards for reference:

Centre for Assessment Ltd Training Courses

Our ISO 9001 and 14001 Transition training spends a day looking at the structure of the new standards to kick start your change process with a focused and interactive training day.

With a particular focus on leadership, structure, documentation and the context of your organisation, we’ll explore what’s new, what’s not and consider how the changes will impact your own management system.

This course will provide delegates with an overview of the drivers for change of our management system standards. The training will assist in understanding what aspects are expected to change and those likely to remain the same, whilst providing an update on the change process.

For more information on these courses, or to book your place, please click here. 

proud to be part of The Growth Company