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Improving the efficiency and effectiveness is the instruction of leaders and subject matter experts at all levels of an organization, but without a systematic approach to streamlining operations, missed opportunities will result. Adhering to ISO standards is a proven method for identifying waste and innovating solutions to improve customer satisfaction. The benefits of enhancing the scope of ISO within an organization justifies the investment of time, capital and labor in operational excellence initiatives.

Create a Quality Manual

Process excellence is effective when quality becomes the primary focus of an entire organization as opposed to a single department or group of employees. Senior leadership can detail their quality assurance philosophy in a manual that provides everything from communication strategies to process documentation standards and quality auditing requirements. Having a defined operational excellence strategy will help employees understand their responsibilities related to process improvement.

The manual assists management to get on the same page regarding organizational objectives and how to approach deficiencies. Constancy of purpose and consistency are critical elements for success in operational excellence, because they keep efforts heading in the right direction. If team members are unaware of quality, or if they have only partial exposure, it can create everything from mistrust among employees to lacklustre process improvement.

View Operations Objectively

ISO and operational excellence help managers remove bias from their judgements, allowing for improved critical thinking and real breakthroughs. A systematic approach to process improvement also enhances root cause analysis and short-term, medium and long-term solutions to identified process deficiencies. When an organization approaches improvement from a scientific approach, positive outcomes can occur.

Reduce the Cost of Quality

The cost of inefficient production facilities, poor-quality products and bad service are quantifiable, and each can shrink profit margins to the point of no return. These deficiencies are referred to as the cost of quality. Operational excellence initiatives can reduce inspection and labour costs, rework, scrap and various internal failures of machinery. They can also reduce the amount of customer returns and the failure of products once they’ve been delivered to clients.

Eliminate Waste

Adopting ISO aid organizations to find and eliminate waste such as non-value-added process steps from operations. Simple actions such as creating standard operating instructions, process maps or even having team discussions focused on waste reduction can lead to change. Management must focus on execution when it comes to waste removal, because without the support of management, a missed opportunity may slip by. Waste in all its forms inhibits customer value-added and business value-added processes steps.

According to the American Society for Quality, types of waste include:

-Overproduction

-Waiting

-Transportation

-Inventory

-Motion

Support Subject Matter Experts

Many of the most impressive, quantifiable process improvement ideas come from frontline employees that work on production floors or in customer facing areas. That’s because they interact with materials, processes, systems and even customers daily. If subject matter experts are given process excellence training and understand the nuances of ISO they can identify performance gaps, along with steps to enhance efficiency. This is especially true if groups of employees involved in a process, at different stages, are allowed to work together.

It’s also important to avoid false attribution error and not blame employees for waste or process defects, if business processes are inherently at fault. If employees are afraid to point out waste, then it becomes harder for organizations to improve efficiency. A culture of teamwork can create effective business processes that drive higher quality products and services, along with lower operating costs. Better teamwork can also protect, enhance or create intellectual property (IP).

The power of quality to transform organizations and enhance customer satisfaction, along with sustainable profits, is real. Adopting ISO is a cost-effective, proven method for removing waste from operations and improving employee morale. Through a systematic approach, an organization can hone their competitive edge and outpace the competition.

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When out driving whilst in snowy weather, most drivers have a constant awareness for those all-important flashing lights. They are capable of deriving by the size, positioning, and color of the lights approximately what is happening and what is expected from them as drivers. Flashing red white and blue lights low to the ground indicate police cars, while red and white up high are more likely to be an ambulance. Spinning Yellow and white can be associated with larger maintenance trucks and those warning vehicles that accompany oversized cargo loads. However, motorists in Ohio, North Dakota and Kent County, Michigan have a new color to add to their road-guide register. Snow plows and other road maintenance vehicles have started implementing green LED lights to increase visibility and create a unique new indicator that will help drivers respond correctly on the icy roads.

Why Green LEDs?

Green is not a color that most people typically expect to see on the road, which is part of what makes it effective. During daytime snow flurries, in which visibility is low but the sun is still quite bright, many drivers have a hard time making out white or yellow lights and snow plows are often subject to bumps and scrapes as cars try to follow closely. The Ohio DoT sites studies that suggest green lights are more easily detected by the human eye than other colors, and there’s no doubt you can’t mistake it for snow glare. As excellent proof of their working theory, Kent County found that in the previous two years, their snow plows with green lights have seen none of the usual rear-ending accidents that normally occur.

Flashing or Steady Illumination

In the constant search for the safest method, several state departments of transportation continue to test the difference in safety between flashing green LEDs and steady a steady burn. The debate lies in the drivers ability to accurately identify the location and speed of an approaching snowplow and act accordingly. Most people expect to see flashing warning lights, and the variable signal catches your attention even in low visibility. While a steady burn gives drivers a consistent point of reference for snow plow location, a lack of flashing can cause confusion. The PNS Association suggests that if you have to choose only one, to go with steady burning however ideally it is more efficient to combine the two methods.

Benefits of LEDs for Snow Vehicles

Whilst we’ve covered why the color green was chosen, why not just adopt normal green lightbulbs? The answer lies in the low heat and high efficiency of the LED light design. Unlike normal filament bulbs, LEDs take much less energy to burn, creating a bright and reliable source of light without eating up battery power while out on the road. LEDs also have a much longer lifespan, increasing the time trucks can go without light replacements, bringing down costs, and reducing the chances of a dangerous outage in the middle of snow plowing service. Finally, LEDs are not hot enough to melt snow, meaning they can be used safely at both upper and ground level without creating the risk of a road slick for placing so many bright lights near the surface.

From North Dakota to Ohio, snow plows are gearing up with green LED warning lights, creating an unforgettable warning system. Mounted on the top, back, and sides, they will flash or burn steadily to alert drivers to their presence, shining clearly through low visibility areas and decreasing the number of unnecessary bumps and scrapes. With the kind of results they’re already getting, it’s no wonder that more counties and states continue to adopt this awesome new warning system.

For more information on the environmental aspect and effects from the use of green LED lights or anything more, please contact Sustainable Certification Pty Ltd

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The governing body for workers rights and safety in Australia is the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (the WHS Act). The WHS act provides the basic framework for the rights of workers to work in a healthy and safe environment, regardless what field of work they participate in. It is significant for workers to understand what is contained in the act so that they know their own rights to working in a healthy and safe working environment.

Who Is Protected?:

The WHS protects everyone involved in the business including, but not limited to the employees, contractors, subcontractors, outworkers, apprentices/trainees, work experience students, volunteers, and employers who perform work.

Protecting the Public: 

The WHS Act also protects the public so their health and safety is not at risk thanks to the business practices of companies that are operating in the area. The WHS Act protects the public interests and health by setting forth business practice standards that are reasonable and attainable, which are also designed to protect the health of the worker as well as of the general population living in the area.

How Is It Enforced?

The WHS enforces all of these policies of health and safety through an enforceable actions such as setting up policies and systems for incident notifications, consultation with workers, issue resolution, inspector powers/functions, and a system for offenses/penalties that a company can incur.

What Does the WHS Act Require Businesses To Do?

The WHS Act requires that business provide their workers with all the basic tools to provide safe work environment including:

  • providing safe work premises
  • assessing workplaces risks and instilling proper measures to control those risks
  • ensure the safe handling of potentially dangerous substances
  • provide and adequately maintain the safety of machines and other workplace equipment
  • assess workplace layouts and implement any necessary alterations to make the environment a safer one in which to work
  • provide the safest possible environments and facilities
  • have appropriate insurance and workers compensation insurance for all employees

What Does the WHS Act Require Employees To Do?

The WHS requires that employees assist in maintaining a safe work environment and abide by the rules established by their company. This includes the following:

  • complying with all instructions given by the workplace for health and safety
  • use any provided personal protective equipment (PPE) and be properly trained on how to use and wear it
  • not recklessly interfere with any sort of machinery or misuse any sort of equipment provided for health and safety at the workplace
  • not place others at risk
  • not injure themselves

WHS Act Requirements May Vary:

Depending on which state or territory you reside in there may be various regulations or legislations that businesses in that are required to meet. It’s important to find any WHS Act authority or in your state or territory and stay up-to-date with the laws and regulations that you are required to practice.

Also, please note that while programs like Safe Work Australia lead national efforts to help create safe work environments and policies that ensure worker safety, they do not regulate or enforce any WHS regulation or action. Safe Work Australia, however, do provide valuable tools for workplace safety such as educational training for employees, advice on safe workplace practices, and ways to incorporate safe business practices into everyday business operations and management.

Also, remember that each industry has it’s own specific standards for workplace and public safety and health concerns. For example, mining companies will be held to different standards than construction companies or a technological startup will be held to yet different regulations. It’s up to the individual company to know the WHS Act rules and regulations in their industry and abide by them.

To learn more please contact Sustainable Certification Pty Ltd


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ISMS is one of the most essential aspects of an organization. Now that the predominant form of communication is done electronically and files are all stored online, making ensuring that your systems are secure is absolutely vital. Many thieves and hackers are constantly attacking your systems. They are seeking business secrets, financial information, consumer credit card numbers and many other pieces of data. They may just be trying to hijack your systems and hold them for ransom (in untraceable bitcoin). For that reason, all firms should conduct a thorough ISMS risk assessment.

Team

First and foremost, establishing a team that will be involved in the process of the risk assessment is necessary. There are a few key people that must be involved.

CIO – The CIO runs the risk assessment team and outlines the key areas which much be covered.

Analyst(s) – The team includes several analysts that collect all of the results and actually write the report. They are in charge of uncovering key findings.

Developers or IT Staff – These personnel run through the code, logs and history and systems based on the request of the CIO. They create the output for the analysts to comb through.

Compliance or Legal – The legal and compliance staff ensure that the risk assessment accords with all laws and regulations. Additionally, they make sure that the firm is safe from any other legal liability that could come from a civil lawsuit.

CEO – The CEO or President must evaluate the assessment when it is complete and inform of any other areas that may have been overlooked. They also must commit to dedicating the time and resources required to implement the recommendations of the assessment.

Process

Once the team is assembled, the risk assessment can begin. The Chief Information Officer (CIO) is accountable for outlining the key areas of the assessment that are particular to the firm.  Traditionally, there are a few areas that all companies must deal with.

Firstly, companies need a robust anti-spam and anti-virus tool installed on every device. The company needs to understand what solutions have been installed and on how many devices. They also need to know if any devices have been corrupted or documents stolen.

Secondly, the company needs an encrypted network with different levels of access. Different personnel in the organization must enter different passwords (that are regularly changed) and verify their authenticity through multiple devices.

Thirdly, the firm must create a redundant external system to save all data so it is not subject to a catastrophic loss.  Cloud security systems must be in place as well.

There are a number of other miscellaneous security concerns based on the physical location, network and corporate structure which also must be considered.

After the CIO prepares the list of possible risks, they instruct their staff to undergo a thorough check of all systems. The IT staff and developers are responsible for looking up all the information and gathering it together in an organized way.

Once the information is aggregated, analysts can look through the data to find the true state of the company. They will then begin to write the actual risk assessment report based on their findings. Next, the legal or compliance team reads the analyst report. They contribute edits and add additional risks from a compliance stand point.

The draft risk assessment is now complete and ready to go to the CIO. The CIO takes a deep dive and adds their own risks or contributions.

Finally, the CEO reads the report and implements any recommendations. They may need board approval for any major expenditures. However, the CEO is legally responsible for implementing all tasks that will prevent a major breach or loss of private data.

For more information ISMS please contact Sustainable Certification Pty Ltd

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The winter is one of the most precarious times of year for construction work but, of course, progress and repairs don’t stop just because the sky decides to drop some frozen water on everything. For the vast majority of construction crews, it has to get pretty cold and the snow quite deep before the foreman are really convinced the work has to stop. After all, there are deadlines to meet, paychecks to collect, and work to be completed. While this hearty attitude is great for your bottom line, it also puts everyone at much greater risk for injuries like slips and falls, dropping cold or slippery items, and contracting frostbite from staying out in the cold too long.

Here are the top seven winter construction safety tips.

1) Maintain Awareness of the Cold

It has become a fallacy that over time as days get warmer that this must be universally true. Days can get colder after dawn and wind speed can increase the chill. Stay aware of exactly how cold it is for your guys on the worksite and make sure everyone else is paying attention as well. If anyone allows themselves to get too cold, this can lead to stiff fingers and clumsiness followed by frostbite and hypothermia. Your number one priority is to ensure everyone remains warm.

2) Warm Break Room and Shorter Shifts

Create a warm and dry place to sit down and heat up, preferably large enough for everyone on the job if the weather gets bad and you need to wait out a flurry. It’s very important that your team regain their correct body temperature regularly which means shorter shifts out in the cold with frequent retreats to a warm break room where they can hang up coats and warm up their fingers.

3) Coffee and Alcohol Offer ‘False Heat’

Most construction sites offer coffee for a nice hot drink and your guys will want it, but you really should offer a non-caffeine alternative. Caffeine (and alcohol) speeds up the heart rate and creates a false sense of warmth while allowing easier hypothermia and frostbite. Instead, try offering hot cider and herbal tea to keep your team warm and hydrated.

4) Require Warm, Heavy Gear

Do not, under any circumstances, let one of your guys go into a serious winter worksite with lightweight Personal protective equipment. When the temperature is low and there is ice everywhere, a jacket and thin gloves simply aren’t enough. Make sure everyone has thick socks, boots, heavy jackets, lined leather gloves, and ample protection for the head and ears.

5) Dry Off Immediately

If anyone gets wet for any reason, they should retreat to the warm break room and dry off and warm up immediately in order to avoid hypothermia. Have a few large blankets available and advise the guys to have a change of clothing just in case someone gets covered in a falling pile of snow and winds up soaked and freezing.

6) Clear the Snow and Ice

Before you start each day on a snowy worksite, make sure to clear the entire work area and reinforce it for traction. You can put down large rubber mats, use road salt, or even sprinkle a little kitty litter around to keep your pathways clean and slip-free. This ensures that no one comes across a patch of unexpected ice later on when their hands are full.

7) Prepare Your First Aid Kit for Frostbite

If frostbite happens, you want to be ready for it right away. You will need warm water and a bowl, bandages, hot beverages, and over the counter pain medication as well as a quick line to a local hospital just in case the frostbite is serious or there are signs of hypothermia. Pack your first aid kit and break room accordingly, then train the team to know the signs in themselves and others and to seek treatment immediately.

The biggest risk when working on construction projects in the winter is the possibility of frostbite or hypothermia, followed by the risk of slipping on something icy. If you go out of your way to prepare for these eventualities, your team should be safe and everyone can enjoy running back into the break room regularly for cups of cider and a quick finger check.

For more information on Process controls that will aid in prevention and elimination of construction injuries during winter, please contact Sustainable Certification Pty Ltd

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Construction is one of the predominant sources of pollution, especially in dense areas where the dust and debris is accumulated within a small area. The chief contributors include materials such as concrete, cement, wood, stone, sand and silica which are blown into the air in the form of dust during the construction process. These materials qualify for the PM-10 standard. That means they are less than 10 microns in diameter and particularly dangerous to the human health. However, there are steps that a construction company can partake in to reduce the harmful impacts of its work and comply with the laws and guidelines in Australia.

Screens and Covers

First and foremost, every site should have copious screens covers and walls to ensure that dust is contained primarily in the work area. There must be a fresh mesh screen put over the primary work area, especially if heavy machinery is being operated.

Trucks should have cover skips in place to help minimize these particles from spraying into the air. These are especially significant to protect because they are traveling through residential areas and expose so many number of people as they pass by. Protecting transportation with covers is just as important if not more so than the construction site itself.

Water

Every day and periodically, all sites should be tamped down with water. Fine water sprays using a hose help to provide a solvent to the particles and bring them crashing to the ground, where they are less harmful to humans. Similarly, cover skips on vehicles need to be damped down with water every once in a while.

Importantly, sites using water to prevent aerial pollution should ensure there is a safe sewage and filtration system already in place. Otherwise, these materials will eventually make their way into the dirt, rivers and streams. This hurts the natural environment as well as the food chain which will eventually be detrimental for humans.

Inspections and Audits

Construction teams must run regular inspections and audits of the site. They have to ensure that the major areas are contained with screens as mentioned above. They also have to look for spills or messes that could lead to problems in the future.

Materials

Where possible, a reduction in the amount of dangerous materials used in the construction of the property is encouraged. There are now green building organizations that certify materials that are good for the environment and not harmful to humans through air or water pollution.  In particular, you should be seeking out non-toxic paints, solvents and other non hazardous materials.

Segregation

The hazardous materials that are used should be segregated from one another and from the other less hazardous resources. That reduces the likelihood that theirs will be a dangerous reaction. Additionally, it prevents the spread of dangerous materials throughout the entire project. Hazardous resources should be used sparingly in any case.

Fuel

Use fuels that are not as toxic to the environment to run heavy equipment and trucks. Generally, most heavy equipment, construction machines and other tools can now use low sulphur diesel oil. That reduces the air pollution and helps the health of workers and neighbours. More and more hybrid and electric vehicles are now on the market as reasonable transportation options. There are even electric 16 wheel trailers coming onto the market.

Using all of these methods, construction firms can dramatically reduce the air pollution on their sites. They can improve the workers health and the nearby residents. The firm might even make more money by using high quality materials and charging more for construction.

To learn more please contact Sustainable Certification Pty Ltd

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Construction inevitably produces waste. Managing waste is, thus a continuous challenge for any site. Many projects employ a waste management company to haul away the waste, but there is still the matter of containing and managing waste on-site.

For large quantities of waste, a roll-on skip is commonly the solution. Most removal companies will handle splitting the waste into recyclable and non-recyclable streams. However, for more minor projects, it may be cost ineffective to hire a waste or debris removal company. In this case, waste should be split on-site into items which can be reused, items which can be recycled and things that are going to be waste. Clients, these days, expect that anything which can be recycled should be.

This means a waste assessment should be undertaken before commencing the project and decide what can be reused on future projects (or for some projects even sell), establish what can be recycled and work out in advance if you will have hazardous waste (for example, if you are demolishing an older building it is quite likely you will encounter asbestos). You can then hire the appropriate size and number of skip bins, which should be properly labelled for each kind of waste.

For hazardous waste, you need waste bins assessed for the kind of waste, and will need to comply with the disposal regulations for your area. Likely hazardous waste from demolition or remodelling work includes asbestos, lead (pipes or paint), PCBs, solvents, chemicals, electronics and fluorescent lights (even CFLs are considered hazardous). A debris removal company will generally not take hazardous waste, and the best option is to involve a specialist. Australian law specifies that hazardous waste be labelled and risk mitigated, which may involve using closed drums instead of open bins, removing the waste from the site promptly as well as correct transportation.

For non-hazardous waste, open bins or skips are generally sufficient. Remember that man-portable bins have to stay man-liftable and consider using roll-on skips for all heavy waste (asphalt, metal, etc). Also, make sure that bins are solid enough to handle the weight of the waste you intend to deposit and that you have enough of them to keep up productivity (a worker who is walking across the site finding a waste bin is not working on anything important). Locate small bins for light waste appropriately.

Finally, green waste should be handled separately. Green waste is comprised of grass clippings, twigs, branches, plants, etc. A sustainable company should establish arrangements to compost green waste, which should thus be stored separately. Green waste is best stored in a bin that can be covered as it can develop an unpleasant odor quickly. Consider adding food waste (from employee lunches) to the bin as this is suitable for composting. If you do, place a clearly labeled small bin in the break room or break area for food waste, making sure to educate employees on what can and cannot be placed in it. Talk to your debris removal company about whether they can take compostable waste and what other options you have.

In short – construction waste should be separated if possible and placed in appropriate skips or bins. Non-hazardous debris can be placed in open bins but, due to its weight, is best transported in “roll-on” skips which can be pulled straight onto a vehicle. Hazardous waste must be placed in appropriately-rated storage containers. Green waste should be kept separate and put in bins that have a lid or cover to reduce odors. A responsible construction company uses the right bin for the right job – and also takes reasonable steps to reuse, recycle and reduce waste.


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Workplace bullying continues to surface as an issue that appears in the news – not because it is new but because society has become more aware of it. Companies are also starting to become aware of just what workplace bullying costs them. The costs of workplace bullying may not be directly obvious at first, but companies should consider the following – especially as between 25% and 50% of the workforce have been victims of bullying at some point. Below is a list of the costs to companies of workplace bullying:

1. Loss of productivity. People who are being bullied simply are not responsive in their output, and are distracted by the situation. Additionally, if somebody is bullying or harassing their co-workers, they are generally not working. People may also waste time by trying to avoid the person giving them trouble, such as taking a longer route back from the copier.

2. Loss of time. Bullied employees are prone to call in sick, avoid working overtime and otherwise try to evade the situation. They may well use all of their vacation time. Conversely, if they are afraid for their job, they may come in when they are sick – giving the bug to everyone in the office. “Presenteeism” as it is called may eventuate where worker is not mentally switched on and goes through the motions.

3. Turnover. Any time an employee quits, it costs to train their replacement. A workplace bully has the capacity to drive multiple people out of their jobs – and not just the victim of the bullying. The toxic environment created can also influence peoples decision to leave

4. Reputation. If a company builds a reputation for not looking aftertheir employees well it bears to insignificance if the root cause is a single bully or company policy – customers will look elsewhere. This is particularly relevant for retail outlets and other companies that deal directly with the public.

5. Sick time. In addition to taking sick time just to avoid the bully – victims may actually become sick. Bullying can trigger incapacitating migraines, cause mental health problems, and cause or aggravate high blood pressure. All of this can result in more lost time and higher health insurance premiums. It can even result in workers’ comp claims.

6. Legal issues. Some states, including Pennsylvania, have introduced anti-bullying legislation, which makes employers liable for the action of the bully. Also, 20% of bullying cases involve some form of discrimination – that is, the bully may be targeting a minority, a woman, or somebody who is or perceived to be gay. Most cases are settled, but employers can end up paying a lot of money in compensation and legal costs.

7. Rehabilitation. A bullied employee who does not want to leave may require counseling.

So, what can companies do? It behoves employers to take workplace bullying seriously. Here are some fundamental things employers can employ to prevent or stop workplace bullying:

1. Have a formal and well established process for grievances whether up or down the line. In other words, have a system for addressing performance issues that dissuades supervisors from belittling or raising their voice, and a proper system for grievances against superiors that allows employees to feel they are being heard.

2. Take grievances seriously. Far too often, a supervisor who bullies those under him gets away with it, with higher management (especially if they are not present) arguing that the complaining employees are just “lazy” or “not taking direction.” Pay attention to how many complaints you are getting – if everyone under a supervisor is involved in the complaint it is more likely to be serious than one person. While some people are just saying their boss is too tough, others may actually be telling the truth.

3. Have a policy and prevention plan in place. Educate everyone as to what bullying is and make sure everyone knows that yelling or screaming, personal insults, sexual comments, etc are not acceptable from anyone to anyone.

4. Hold confirmed bullies responsible. Once you have strong evidence somebody is a bully (and consider asking somebody the bully does not know to quietly observe their actions) from interviews or observation, have the person apologize. You can also send a bully for retraining. And, of course, you should always consider terminating a serial bully. No matter how good they are, or appear to be, at their job, if they are ruining everyone else’s work environment, they need to go.

5. Last, but not least, take a hard look at your management style and make sure you are not crossing the line yourself. Pay attention to whether people are comfortable disagreeing with you, your employee turnover rate related to other parts of the organization or other similar organizations, your absentee rate, etc.

Workplace bullying is a problem that does have a solution – but it means you have to take the problem seriously and take a hard line against it – and set a good example yourself.

To learn more please contact Sustainable Certification Pty Ltd

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A new requirement for the ISO 9001 in 2015 was the introduction of the context of the organization. This clause stipulates organizations must review the external and internal issues dramatically impacting the planning and strategic objectives of the company’s QMS. This change affected clause 4 and caused confusion for some organizations.However, the requirement simply asks organizations to define the influence of different elements on the business, and how these elements impact the QMS and other important elements of the company. It is meant to identify risks and protection opportunities for the organization. Embark on these five steps to ensure your organization is compliant with the ISO 9001:2015 requirements.

1. Look for Existing Compliances

There are some existing compliances amongst organizations because some newly established requirements match the ISO 9001:2008 Quality Manual. Companies who have already followed the ISO 9001:2008 have already defined their scope of quality and QMS according to the new standards through flowcharts or texts. Companies starting with the 2015 version from scratch will need to find the scope of QMS, then identify each process and their specific interactions. The documentation of this process is the output the auditor will need before inspection begins.

2. Identify Issues

Internal and external issues need to be identified and this might be considered to be a general statement. Be careful not to be overly expansive in identification of issues. Focus on the issues that directly affect customer satisfaction and the delivery of the quality in products or services. Specifically, the internal context focuses on the environment of the company. This includes management approach, contract fulfillment, and interaction with investors. Consider ideas related to the business’ values, culture, and environment. The external context issues are revealed through consideration of the company’s ethical, legal, political and economic environment. Some examples of external context include, but are not limited to:

  • competition
  • government laws
  • technology changes
  • outside events that affect the organization’s image

3. Identifying Separate Parties and Needs

Start this process by considering what parties, whether external and internal, have opinions that matter. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • end users
  • direct customers
  • suppliers
  • CEO
  • shareholders
  • employees
  • investors

Identify the needs of these essential groups to help provide additional value within the organization. Ask their opinions to discover ways to improve overall company production.

4. Documentation

The most important part of the process is getting the changes on paper. In fact, the standard specifically instructs companies to document changes made to improve the context of the organization. Create a new document to replace the old Quality Manual to be presented before the audit, or simply add to the existing Quality Manual. Adding to the manual is only an option if a manual was created for the 2008 guidelines, however, it is the cheaper, more practical choice. Further, updating interested parties only means highlighting changes, not presenting a full document.

5. Review and Monitor Changes

This last part is one of the most significant parts of the overall change. Organizations may push this aside, but, with practice, it will become habit. Monitoring the external and internal issues and looking for chances for corrections will make any future changes easier on the organization. Two common acronyms for monitoring are SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats) and PEST (political, economic, social, and technological). Use these acronyms for monitoring, and you’ll reach beyond the minimum standards toward improved overall processes. Do not make the context of the organization requirement one that is fulfilled for the audit then forgotten. The information gathered for the requirement is often useful, and should be taken seriously. In fact, some organizations will continue to update this requirement simply to gain the helpful information it provides. Further, the organization will be ready for upcoming changes to the ISO 9001.

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Workplace injuries severely impact not only the company that a person works for but the person themselves. A serious workplace injury can complicate the rest of someone’s life. Moreover, not only will that injury impact that person but also their loved ones, family, and friends as well. In some cases, that person may require permanent disability or have limited employment because of their injury. Others may require care for the remainder of their lives.

These injuries not only put a burden on the company that person worked for but also on the person as well as their family. Therefore, investing in workplace safety is considered a highly regarded choice irrespective of costs.

Below are 10 benefits that the company obtains from implementing a rigid workplace safety program and ensuring that it is upheld at all costs:

  • It Lowers Rates of Absenteeism: The rates of absenteeism plummet when the workplace is safe. People desire safety in their work environment and want to feel like they are cared for. Investing in a safe workplace has potential to substantially improve employee morale

  • Working Equipment is More Productive:Equipment that is in good order and is safe for employees to use will befar more efficient in delivery and improve bottom line than equipment that is in poor repair. Keeping equipment up-to-date can ensure that employees have the tools they need to do their jobs effectively as possible.

  • Safe Work Environment Helps Workers Be More Productive:If workers are confident that the machinery, equipment, materials, and supplies they have on hand to do their jobs they will be able to work more quickly. Workers that work quicker will help raise the profitability of the company. Over time, this increased productivity will far outweigh the cost of properly maintaining the machinery and equipment.

  • A Safe Work Environment Will Produce a Higher Quality Product:An environment in which the machinery and equipment is in good working order will be able to produce a higher quality product no matter what industry you work in. The higher quality product can demand more money which can raise the company’s bottom line.

  • A Safe Work Environment Limits Employee Insurance Claims:A safe work environment will help limit employee injuries and therefore insurance claims for injuries. The less claims the company has against them the more money they save. Not only will the company avoid paying unnecessary medical bills and workman’s comp they will also avoid increased insurance rates if they are seen as a “risk” by the insurance company.

  • Incorporating Workers Ideas Helps Them Feel Valued in Safety:Your own workers do their jobs every day and are some of the best assets you have in developing a quality workplace safety program. Reach out to them and incorporate their ideas and inputs into the program. If they feel their voices are heard they are much more likely to care about the rules and safety program than if they feel that rules are just being “forced upon them” by the company.

  • A Quality Safety Program Makes Customers Notice:Customers sit up and recognize any company that goes the extra mile to take good care of their employees, especially when it comes to their safety and well-being. Going the extra mile to take care of your employees can  help you get and retain customers for a long time to come as it creates extra goodwill for the company.

  • A Good Safety Program Drives Up Profits:Companies with a quality safety program and limited worker injuries helps limit the disruptions in day-to-day operations of people getting hurt or not being able to work because of injury. The more seamlessly the business can run the more profitable it will be.

  • Protect Your Most Valuable Asset:Protecting your most valuable asset cannot have a price tag of cost vs. profit put on it. The most valuable resource you have is your workers. Remember that without your workers your company is nothing, so protect them and treat them as they are precious as they really are.

  • It Saves Lives:This is no exaggeration to say that people literally die at work. The Bureau of Better Business Statistics estimates that 50,000 people die from work-related incidences. While not all of thesedeaths are preventable many of them, such as construction accidents, are very preventable. Ensuring you have a safe place to work can indeed literally save lives.


Conclusions: Workplace safety should be the top and central priority of any company looking to be the best at what they do. You can’t put a price tag on anyone’s well-being, health, and life. In the end, taking care of your employees is taking care of your business.

Spending the extra cash on the proper maintenance of the machinery, equipment, materials, and supplies you use to run your every day business will come back to help make your business more profitable.

It will also return every employee home to their family safely at the end of each day because you can’t put a price on someone’s well-being and their life.

For more information on Workplace safety matters and having more effective strategies to reduce likelihood of such issues, please contact Sustainable Certification Pty Ltd

 

Feel Free to call Sustainable Certification on 1800024940

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