In the world market, there is a need to put in place certain regulations or standards guiding the production of goods and services. Else, it will be a herculean task to maintain balance in the production of quality products and services.
The International Standard Organization (ISO) is a recognized body globally saddled with the responsibility of putting in place checks and balances as regards the production of safe and quality goods.
An Overview of International Standard Organization (ISO)
The ISO began operations in 1920 as the International Federation of National Standardizing Association (ISA). However, in the year 1942, they were suspended due to World War 2. But immediately after the world war, the United Nations Standard Coordinating Committee (UNSCC) approached them with a proposal to form a rebranded global standard body.
As a result of the proposal, in 1964, the UNSSC and the ISA met and agreed to combine efforts to create a new body called the International Standardization Organization.
The International Organization for Standardization is a stand-alone non-governmental body comprising 165 member countries. Furthermore, they are the biggest developer of voluntary International standards in the world saddled with the responsibility of delivering common standards among nations.
Furthermore, ever since their inception, they have been able to set over 20,000 standards which cover everything from health care, manufactured products, food safety to Agriculture and technology. In addition to this, they currently have 250 technical committees, 510 subcommittees, and 2478 working groups.
Board of members of the International Organization for Standardization
The ISO consists of individuals who are very successful in finance, industry, and government services. This group of people makes up the Principal Officers of the ISO. They are:
- The Vice President (Policy)
- Vice President (Technical Management)
- The Vice President (Finance)
In addition, the ISO is also made up of the ISO Council, Technical Management Board, and a network of National Standards representatives from various countries.
What are the functions of ISO?
- They are saddled with the responsibility of developing International Standards, which they achieve through their experts scattered across the world.
- Guidance of thousands of documents through drafting, review, and publication
- They actively encourage the teaching of standardization by participating in a joint master’s program. This program aids the establishment of similar programs, and also the maintenance of a database of materials related to standards.
- To facilitate process improvement, safety, and quality in different areas
- Development and provision of Market standards regarding market demands.
What are the different ISO Standards?
As we have earlier stated, the ISO is the world’s largest publisher of standards in the world. These standards are however crucial for regulating business practices, quality, and manufactured products.
Here are some of their common standards and what they mean to your business:
ISO 9000–Quality Management:
For any organization that wants to remain in business, quality should be its topmost priority. Therefore, the ISO created this standard to help the organization ensure they meet up with stakeholders and customer demands. However, it is imperative that these demands must be within the confines of regulatory and statutory requirements of a product or service.
ISO 14000–Environmental Management:
This is a variant of all other standards by ISO. It however aims at helping several organizations across the world in reducing the way in which their modulus Operandi affects the environment. Also, it is a means of having organizations comply with rules and regulations, and other environmentally related requirements.
ISO 31000: 2018–Risk Management:
This standard aims to make the rules guiding risk management actionable, straightforward, and easy to implement by organizations. However, this is irrespective of their size, location, or mode of operation. Also, it is imperative to note that we cannot use this standard for certification. It only serves to help organizations thrive in an uncertain environment and situations.
ISO/IEC 27000–Information security and Management systems:
With cyber threats on the rise all over the world, we can however not overemphasize the need for adequate provision for information security. On that note, the ISO created this standard to generally help organizations manage the security of their assets. This includes; financial and employee data, intellectual property, etc.
ISO 45001- Occupational Health and Safety:
Diseases, hazards, and occupational injuries affect the growth and development of any economy to a great extent. However, to manage this problem, the ISO developed this standard in line with the OHSA and IL-OSH guidelines. This provides for the security, safety, and reduction of hazards in the workplace.
Besides the standards we have listed above, there are several other standards from the ISO. You can visit their official website to learn more about their standards.
How do I register with ISO?
It is not the responsibility of the ISO group to provide conformity assessment or certification. However, if you are looking to get certified, you can contact any external certification body in your country.
The ISO creates standards to enhance the production of quality and safe products for our users, and also to ensure that things work as they should. It is a popular belief of the organization that “when things don’t work as they should, it often means standards are absent”