Quality professionals use the term “standards” to mean many things, such as metrics, specifications, gages, statements, categories, segments, groupings or behaviors.
But usually when they talk about standards, they’re talking about quality management.
Management standards address the needs of organizations in training, quality auditing and quality-management systems. The ISO 9000 Series, for example, is a set of international standards for quality management and quality assurance. The standards were developed to help companies effectively document the elements they need to maintain an efficient quality system. They are not specific to any one industry.
ISO 9000 can help a company satisfy its customers, meet regulatory requirements and achieve continual improvement. But it’s a first step, many quality professionals will tell you, the base level of a quality system, not a complete guarantee of quality.
ISO 9000 Facts
The revised ISO 9000:2008 series of standards is based on eight quality management principles that senior management can apply for organizational improvement:
Resources on the ISO 9000 Series
Standards addressing the specialized needs and circumstances of certain industries and applications also exist:
Environment. The ISO 14000 series of international standards integrate environmental considerations into operations and product standards. The standards specify requirements for establishing an environmental policy, determining environmental impacts of products or services, planning environmental objectives, implementation of programs to meet objectives, corrective action and management review.
Aerospace. AS9100, the international quality management standard for the aerospace industry, was released in November 1999.
Automotive. There are three popular standards used in the automotive industry:
Statistics. Statistical standards provide methods for collecting, analyzing and interpreting data. ANSI/ASQ Z1.4-2008 establishes sampling plans and procedures for inspection by attributes. ANSI/ASQ Z1.9-2008 establishes sampling plans and procedures for inspection by variables.
Telecommunications. TL 9000 defines the telecommunications quality system requirements for the design, development, production, delivery, installation and maintenance of products and services in the telecommunications industry. It uses ISO 9000 as a foundation but goes a step further to include industry-specific requirements and metrics.
Three ways to purchase ISO 9001:2008: