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Feedback Q&A on ISO 9000

by Ron Kurtus

Readers have sent in a total of 104 comments and questions on ISO 9000 issues. They are listed according to date.

You can read them to further your understanding of the subject.

List of next 10 letters




General How much to get certifed? USA
Required Records Can consulting inductry exclude some paragraphs? India
Required Records Getting ISO 9000 certification in Pakistan Pakistan
Manual Sample On auditing South Africa
Steps Information about ISO certification INDIA
Simple Plan Concerning loopholes New Zealand
Compliance vs Certification Questions on ISO 9000 Philippines
Manual Sample Does ISO 9000 stifle innovation? Cambodia
TQM Comparison Role of ISO 9000 in TQM MALAYSIA
Compliance vs Certification Interested in becoming ISO compliant USA

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First 10 letters

How much to get certifed?

Topic: General


September 20, 2004

We are a small injection molding company with 1 part time employee. My question I have for you is, how much would it cost to become ISO 9000? I noticed on you site that it could range from 35K and up, is that true for a little company like ours?.

Thaks for your time

Dave - USA



The first question is whether you really need to become ISO 9000 certified. Usually a company will be certified when a client requires it. You can also simply conform to the standard without officially being certified.

I just put together an ISO 9000 Quality Manual for a small chemical company for $250. They just want to say they follow the standards, but didn't want to get into full-blown certification.

Once you have a manual, you can hire a registrar company to audit you and get you cerified. I'm guess for a small company like yours, they would charge a few thousand dollars.

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Can consulting inductry exclude some paragraphs?

Topic: Required Records


September 13, 2004

Can Consulting Industry (Consultation on Wealth mangement & Business Finance)exclude Clause 7.3 Design & Development

Rohan - India



Manufacturing companies use ISO 9001, while other companies can use ISO 9002, which excludes such paragraphs as 7.3 and others related to manufacturing.

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Getting ISO 9000 certification in Pakistan

Topic: Required Records


September 5, 2004

hi i want to know the proceure of getting iso certification in pakistan plz inform me in detail that how companies in pakistan can get iso certification thanx let me inform as soon as possible

sadaf - Pakistan



Organizations that give certification in Pakistan can be seen at:

Also the Pakistan Institute of Quality Control may provide some help:

Best wishes in getting certified.

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On auditing

Topic: Manual Sample


August 13, 2004

Why do you think we need to conduct inernal Audits? What are the objectives?

What do you think are some of the do's and don't of internal Auditing.

Except for internal auditing what other types of auditing are there?

Johanna - South Africa



You certainly want to have an internal audit before you let someone from the outside audit your company. Even if a company is not seeking ISO 9000 certification, it is a good idea to have internal audits in the various areas of the company--especially financial--to make sure things are running properly.

The auditor should be trained to know what to look for, but also must not be part of the area being audited. You don't want a manager auditing his or her area.

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Information about ISO certification

Topic: Steps


August 9, 2004

we are related to the SOFTWARE TECHNOLOGIES

i want the information about ISO certification

Indicate the following
a) Steps
b) In each step who are the players
c) Gice a short description of the process
d) Indicate the time line for the process - estimated
e) Price - Could fellows

ch - INDIA



The material in our ISO 9000 lessons should give you most of the information you need, as well as a sample manual. The players in each step depend on your company and their decision. The time lne also depends on your own implementation. Check with a registrar and auditors for their price.

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Concerning loopholes

Topic: Simple Plan


August 3, 2004

Hi there, I'm an accounting student and I have a few questions which I would like to get your opinion on.

1) What does it mean to find loopholes and how would finding loopholes be potentially valued by the management of a company?

2) Explain how auditors could be participants in seeking loopholes when Auditing Standards and GAAP require the pursuit of truth and fairness in financial statment presentation?

3) Expalin how truth and fairness in financial reporting is related to the concept of professionalism?

Thank you in advance for your help and comments

Kind Regards

DJ - New Zealand



Although laws, rules and standards are meant to make things run better, they also may hinder what a particular company wants to do. There is no such thing as a perfect law, so clever people can find exceptions or ways around the law to their advantage. These are called loopholes.

Companies seeking ISO 9000 certification or preparing for a tax audit will hire auditors to check their system. Since the auditor is hired by the company, he or she may also know ways to hide items or get around the law. There are dishonest people in every profession, and audting is no exception.

In the United States there is the recent Sarbanne-Oxley Act, which requires companies to verify their honesty in financial disclosures. It also protects companies from simply being careful. This Act was a result of the Enron scandals.

Truth and fairness in financial reporting are related to character and not necessarily professionalism. There are gangsters and thieves who are quite professional in their trades.

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Questions on ISO 9000

Topic: Compliance vs Certification


July 17, 2004

why do we need International standardization?
How is ISO Compliance differ from ISO Certification?
What are the advantages of complying new standards?
What are some companies or organizations to ISO Standard? Or companies in ISO Compliant and ISO Certified

- Philippines



Companies want standardization so that they know what type of products and supplies they will be getting from other companies.

Compliance is following most of the rules. Certification or registration is means the company is officially compliant with ISO and agrees to be audited every year. A company that is only compliant cannot say they are ISO 9000 Certified.

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Does ISO 9000 stifle innovation?

Topic: Manual Sample


July 16, 2004

Dear Sir,
I am 63 years old and have worked as a small industries advisor in third world countries for over 35 years. There are many situations, in particular in the third world contex, were reverse engineering would suite the design criteria, that is make it, see if it works then formaly draw it up etc. I am being told that this can not be done with ISO and that design must follow the line of design (on a computer) with drafted drawings being past to the appropriate technical people for making. Such a system completely cuts out the inovator.

I believe that the design process should allow, at one end of the process, the inovator to proceed with a few hand drawn sketches and build the item, whilst other ideas would require a more formal approach. I do realise that whatever method is used it has to documented and records kept.
I look forward to hearing from you.

Harold Pearson.

Harold - Cambodia



The main idea of ISO 9000 is to document what you are going to do, then do what you say you will do, and finally verify that with some sort of records. This is so that all customers will get the same quality product.

This also means that if a company says they will make a shoddy product and then they consistently do what they say they were going to do, then they are still following the ISO 9000 standard.

The more recent versions of ISO 9000 have added in quality improvement, which can force a company to improve their products.

A company that uses reverse engineering or other forms of innovation is not really in the manufacturing phase. Once they have determined a design and start manufacturing, ISO 9000 could come into play to assure consistency of products delivered.

Note that ISO 9000 is usually only a requirement if the customer is a business and demands adherence to the standard. But I advocate trying to follow the standard without formally getting certified, as a good business practice.

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Role of ISO 9000 in TQM

Topic: TQM Comparison


June 7, 2004

HI.. i would like to know more about the role of ISO 9000
within a Total Quality Management Programe.
i would be great if you could send me the information
regarding to this topic. thank you very much.




Typcially, they are separated, but they really should be combined. ISO 9000 lays the groundwork for running a company in a consistent manner. It does address some continuous improvement issues.

Then Total Quality Management looks at ways to reduce waste and improve customer satisfaction. It works the best when ISO 9000 is implemented first.

If you are starting a TQM programme, it would be good to start with ISO 9000 and then start to use the other tools.

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Interested in becoming ISO compliant

Topic: Compliance vs Certification


May 4, 2004

Our company is located in the Milwaukee, Wisconsin area and is interested in becoming ISO compliant, not certified. Are you aware of any consulting groups in this area that could help us with this?

Jim - USA



Being ISO 9000 compliant is a great way to improve your company's operation, while allowing you the flexibility of doing what you want. If that is the goal of your top management, it may be a way to go.

But note that simply being ISO 9000 compliant is not generally accepted, if you hope to advertize that you follow ISO 9000 or are required to adhere to ISO 9000 by your customers or clients. In other words, being compliant is an internal operation decision, but you probably can't use it as a marketing tool.

I live in the Milwaukee area, so if you'd like to discuss it further. Also, the American Society for Quality (ASQ) is headquartered here ( They could give referrals about becoming certified.

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