A quality manual; what is it and what’s in it for you?

A quality manual; what is it and what’s in it for you?

ISO standards (e.g. ISO 9001:2015) and the establishment and maintenance of a decent quality management system are inextricably linked. With the quality management system you determine the desired method of working, record it in a clear and structured way and ensure that the procedures and work instructions are accessible to the right people in the organisation. In this way, you ensure the quality of the entire operation. With regard to this, a commonly heard term is the quality manual. But what exactly is this?

What is a quality manual?

The purpose of a quality management system is to keep the process of continuous improvement going. To achieve this, it is very important that everyone in the organisation contributes to this goal. Improving customer satisfaction in this perspective, for example, can only be realized if everyone works according to the agreed-upon process.

If all work processes are well and clearly described, this will make them easy to implement. This way you can be assured that the product or service will be delivered at the predetermined conditions (price, quality, delivery time).

ISO 9001:2015 and the quality manual

Nowadays, thick packs of paper are truly a thing of the past. Therefore, in the new ISO 9001:2015 version, forms and manuals are no longer mandatory. The term "quality manual" has also disappeared. With all the modern digital systems, there are many other ways to properly organise the quality management system.

ISO encourages to think for yourself about its design and what and how to record it. The standard however does require the provision of documented information that the organisation deems necessary for the effectiveness of the quality management system. Of course you can choose to still create a quality manual, more in the form of a digital all-summary document of your quality management system for example.

My ISO Genius Software tool to set up your quality management system

As described above, you are free to set up your quality management system. The software tool of My ISO Genius is an ideal tool for this purpose. All employees in your organisation have easy access and through an automated task system you set workflows in motion effortlessly.

Have you not yet set up a quality management system for the purposes of ISO 9001? Then the software tool explains exactly, for each requirement of the standard, what needs to be done in order to comply with it. The tool is set up in such a way that it is possible to do this completely independently without any knowledge about ISO standards. The explanations are easy for anyone to understand, and the structure makes it easy to categorize process descriptions in each possible area.

Even for those who already have a quality management system - or even a paper quality manual - My ISO Genius' software is an extremely useful tool to further automate and/or digitize it. This is also fully in line with ISO 9001: 2015, which encourages you to record your quality management in your sole discretion in a modern system.

No time to set up a quality management system yourself? Or are you looking for support?

Check out the possibilities here.

About the author
KAM Consultants was founded by Joost Vaessen in 2011 After seeing various consultants working on ISO implementations in previous years, he decided that ISO certification was becoming far too complex. Reason enough for him to take up the adventure and start his own consultancy firm. Over the years Joost and his team of consultants have guided more than 1000 companies towards various ISO certifications. As a highly experienced consultant, Joost set himself the goal of simplifying ISO certification for companies by sharing knowledge, providing training and developing software.
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