Obtaining ISO certification involves two steps:
- Consulting (Preparatory Stage)
- Hiring a consultant
There are ISO consultants available as Freelance Individual Consultant or Consulting bodies who maintain a group of personal and office set-up and big list of clientele. Any organization should decide the consultancy based on the following factors:
- Consultant / Consultancy body background
- Expertise in the field of work
- Time required in completing the work
- Level of committement
- Cost factor.
This is an optional exercise. Some organization manages by employing qualified personnel internally.
- Employing suitable personnel
The most important factor is to employ qualified and experienced personnel such as ISO 14001 Lead Auditor or ISO 14001 Internal Auditor Qualified personnel with past experience in the ISO implementation and training. Advantages of employing qualified personnel for ISO 14001 implementation is as follows:
- Able to spend more time with employees.
- Help and guide various departments in completing the requirements.
- Helps in making real progress in the implementation.
- Can conduct training for each department/section
- Can conduct internal Audit more frequently.
- Can adjust and work as per the organization time and culture.
- Steps involved in the consulting phase:
- Gap Audit
- Awareness Training
- Internal Auditor Training
- Conducting Internal Audit
- Corrective Action
- Interacting with External Certification body
Gap Audit: To assess the organization’s current state in EMS implementation and further what activities are required to be done for successful effective implementation and certification. As an outcome a ‘road-map’ is derived.
Awareness Training: To create an awareness about the standard and its requirements to employees, contract workers, neighbors, investors, bankers, Govt. organization, suppliers etc.,
Documentation: To derive the procedures, SOPS, instructions, manuals, guidelines etc., Formats for the updating the records are introduced.
Internal Auditor Training: To train selective key process owners /dept heads to handle the ISO 14001 audit, its interpretation, writing non conformances and closure of NC’s etc.,
Implementation: System is practiced by all departments and employees, updating records, following procedures etc.
Conduct Internal Audit: One internal Audit covering all the activities and process should be completed effectively using the trained Internal Auditors.
Corrective Action: Any non conformances identified during Internal Audits shall be analysed and corrective action should be carried out and documented for future verification.
Interacting with External CB: At this stage, applications should be forwarded to third party certification bodies and obtain quotation to shortlist. Discuss the audit dates with the shortlisted CB.
Stage1 Audit: To check the preparedness of your organization in terms of coverage, documentation, Implementation etc. Some corrections or area of improvement points will be pointed out.
Stage2 Audit: To check the effectiveness of implementation. Any deviation is notified as “non conformity”.
Non-Conformity and Corrective Action: Any non conformity (a failure or deviation) is documented, analysed and corrective action is taken in the system such that the same type of problems will never occur in future. On submission of Corrective Action details, CB will process for the certification.
Time grossly depends on the size and competence of the personnel involved in the consulting and implementation process.
Management Commitment is also very important for successful out come of ISO 14001 Certification.
IAS can support organization to obtained ISO 14001 Certification in Iraq.
For details contact:
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