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Applying The Principle of Involvement of People in ISO 9001

People at all levels are the essence of an organization and their full involvement enables their abilities to be used for the organization’s benefit. (ISO 9004:2009)

 

The documented system map, in the quality manual, with the accompanying description provides the overviews of the business idea of the organization. It shows the alignment and integration of the key processes and management activities of the whole organization. Identifying the requirements clauses in the map provides the additional evidence that QMS is planned according to the requirements of the ISO 9001 Standard.

 

1. Top-Down Communication

Top management ensures that the responsibilities and authority are defined and communicated within the organization, as per ISO 9001 Clause 5.5.1 “Responsibility and Authority”. The evidence on the involvement of people is the organization chart which provides the visual picture of the organization functions. The organization chart is a formal document which defines how the organization is structured to achieve its intention.

 

The top management empowers people through their defined responsibility and authority. This is accompanied by the documented job description with the necessary job requirements and job specifications. The job specifications define the necessary competence for the personnel performing work affecting the conformity of the product requirements. Personnel are qualified on the basis of appropriate education, training, skills and experience defined in ISO 9001 Clause 6.2.1 “General”.

2. Responsibility and Authority

For those personnel who are lacking in key competencies, training shall be provided or appropriate actions taken to achieve the necessary competence for the job as per ISO 9001 Clause 6.2.2 “Competence, Training and Awareness”. The continual updating of personnel records is necessary to provide the evidence on the provision of resources with the necessary competencies to meet the requirements of the business.

 

3. Training

An important aspect of employee involvement is empowerment for self-management. Effective empowerment for self-management is only possible if there are adequately documented procedures, work instructions, supporting documented criteria and methods for measurement, analysis, control and improvement, defined expectations of outcomes in the form of measurable ability objectives, authority for decision-making, and the opportunities for taking corrective and prevention actions. The management has to monitor and give feedback on the achievement of planned results and provide adequate motivation through appreciate recognition and rewards.

 

4. Empowerment and Involvement

5. Communication

Communication is a necessary activity for continual involvement of employees in performance management practices. This is top management responsibility as per ISO 9001 Clause 5.5.3 “Internal Communication”. It is the top management responsibility to ensure that both to-down and bottom-up communications and feedback take place towards achieving the effectiveness of QMS.

 

Although teamwork is not specifically defined in the ISO 9001 standard, it is expected that problem-solving and continual improvement project teams are encouraged to resolve issues for the improvement of QMS. Project charters and project reports from such activities provide evidence records of people involvement.

 

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