Spotlight focus: Becoming an ISO9001:2015 Mastermind

In the pursuit for better and more efficient quality management processes and stay in compliance with the ISO9000 series, it is important to have the right approach and tools in order for you and your employees to upscale internal auditing and develop continuous improvement in quality management of the company.

In this blog post I will provide you with the knowledge and sources that I find useful in terms of understanding the ISO9001:2015 standard, to help make you a Mastermind.

To be a Mastermind of quality management with ISO9001:2015 you will need the following toolkit:

  • Knowledge of the quality management standards from ISO9001:2015
  • An internal auditing checklist tailored to your company’s needs
  • The ability to motivate, lead and engage all levels of employees to perform frequent quality audits.

To help you get started here is a quick drill-down of the standard:

In brief: If this is the first time you are hearing about the ISO9001 standard, you may wonder what it is. So to create a better understanding and answer the question you have in your mind now; no, you don’t need to have a certification in it by law, however, it is recommended in terms of optimising quality management practices in the company.

How does it work?

The 2015 standard is broken down into 10 sections, or articles, with 7 principles to follow. If you already know of the standard from 2008, you will know that this one, in comparison had 8 sections. The 2015 standard is, therefore, an upgrade. 
Where the 2008 version had an increased focus on quality management systems, resource management and management responsibilities, the 2015 version has added focus areas for planning and support.

The 7 principles as outlined by the ISO and broken down by American Society for Quality (ASQ) of the 2015 standard are as follows:

1. Keep Your Customer In Focus

This principle is primarily focused on customer satisfaction and understanding the needs of your customers, both now and in the future.

2. Proactive And Responsible Leadership

This principle is primarily focused direction and goal setting and creating trust on all levels of the organisation. Including recognising employees contributions openly.

3. Engage Your Staff

This principle is, as it implies, focused on the engagement of people within the organisation.

4. Make Your Processes Activities

This principle focuses on how processes can be implemented as activities. That means that you from now on will manage all activities of the organisation as if they were processes.

5. Learning From Mistakes

This principle focuses on improvement of processes, activities, the organisation and capabilities of the organisation.

6. Make Better Decisions

This principle focuses on data based decision making. You need more data and more precise data in order to assess methods and make the best decisions possible for the company internally, and externally.

7. Have Stronger Relationships

This principle focuses on the relationship you have with your suppliers and partners, both short term and long term. The focus is on growing with your partners and suppliers and collaborating with them around improvements of processes that involve them.

Read more details about the standards on ISO’s own website. Another great resource is ASQ’s breakdown.

By implementing ISO9001:2015, you will, as a result, see the quality management in the company increase and customer satisfaction and employee happiness grow.

Internal Auditing For Better Overall Quality Management

Now you know the standard, it’s time to put it into use. The best way of making it a common practice is by embedding it in your internal auditing processes.

To help you get started we have created a checklist of what to check during the internal audit. This checklist is not linked directly to ISO’s checklists but is something that we have created for overall internal auditing procedures to ensure good quality management in the company.

Get The Checklist


Plan Brothers is the global leader in checktech, providing web and mobile tools for incident reporting, inspection and auditing processes for the sectors Security, Retail, Shopping Centres and Schools, Energy, Hotels and Manufacturing. More information at planbrothers.io.

ISO9001:2015 Checklist Quality Management

Anthony Jones

Country Director, UK