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Just Give Me The Certificate And I'll Be On My Way

Management commitment goes beyond just getting the ISO 9001 Certificate

Unfortunately too many people have a mindset of 'Just give me the certificate and I'll be on my way' when they approach ISO 9001 certification.

Heads up: this won't fly with ISO 9001:2015

Management commitment has always been an integral part of good quality management. The revised standard has now emphasised the importance. And why shouldn't it when management commitment is so critical to the success of any organisation. 

Let's look at how management commitment contributes to successful quality management:

- Management commitment feeds all the way through an organisation. How often have you seen a lack of management commitment cause problems in realising a desired outcome?

- Management provide leadership and the overall direction of quality management. How can a business continually improve, if the goals haven’t even been identified?!

- Accountability for and promotion of the use of the quality management system starts with management. How often have you witnessed a situation where you follow the management system but management do their own thing?

- Quality management requires on-going commitment to develop, maintain and improve the quality management system. This is only possible if management makes the necessary resources available.

- Quality representatives need to have the authorisation and support to implement effective quality controls such as internal audits and management review meetings.

- Customer satisfaction and continual improvement of an organisation is the foundation for success. It takes management commitment to communicate and demonstrate the importance of meeting and exceeding the customer’s expectations.

A certification auditor will speak with top management to identify the level of management commitment. The auditor will ask questions such as:

‘How do you meet your customers’ expectations?’,

‘How do you find out about non-conformances and how are they dealt with?’

‘What are your quality objectives and how do you work towards them?’

‘Where can you find the quality management system?’

‘What is your quality policy?’

‘Have you provided enough resources for the maintenance of the quality management system?’

‘How do you support the quality representative?’

The auditor will speak with various employees regarding the support and involvement from top management. They will also look for objective evidence of management commitment in the form of emails, management review meeting minutes and resource management.

For more information on management commitment and how to meet the requirements of ISO 9001 visit

How does top management show and implement management commitment in your organisation? Please comment below.