Why the Quality in Business Certification?

The Quality in Business Certification is an independent (voluntary) certification managed by the International Trade Council; a 64-year-old, peak-body chamber of commerce. This certification is not designed to replace ISO 9000-series standards; but to act as a complimentary standard for organizations who wish to participate in measurable quality certification at a low cost.

  • Many organizations state that they will only do business with vendors that are ISO 9001 compliant but many small or minority-owned businesses may not be able to afford the time and/or money involved in ISO registration. Quality in Business Certification may help these businesses demonstrate their achievements and their commitment to quality – without significant time and monetary outlay.
  • Organizations who voluntarily seek certification are often perceived in a better light than those who have a type of certification forced upon them. By voluntarily seeking certification a participating organization is telling their customers and suppliers that they truly care about quality.
  • The fact that the Quality in Business Certification is centrally audited (the Council randomly assigns independent auditors from a pool – and auditors do not charge additional fees for their audit) means that the certification may appear more robust in certain circumstances.ISO auditors can sometimes be perceived to be financially incentivized not to revoke certificates ~ unless there is a huge mess.
  • ISO 9000 series certification doesn’t have a ‘grade’ for certified organizations (participating organizations are either registered or not registered to the Standard). This sometimes leads to a lack of desire for improvement; particularly where an organization sought ISO registration solely because it was a requirement to supply their product or service to a particular customer. Quality in Business Certified organizations are graded across multiple areas of their business and they’re offered suggestions for improvement. Annual renewals provide an opportunity to improve their grading and this, in turn, gives the participating organizations a sense of achievement – and something to tell their customers and suppliers.
  • As global ‘best business practices’ evolve so does the Quality in Business Standard.
  • Certified organizations should therefor always be striving to achieve best business practices.
  • It has often been argued that it may not be appropriate to apply a process such as ISO 9000 to a field requiring creativity, such as software engineering, which is more analogous to designing factories than to operating a factory. The Quality in Business Certification focuses on tangible ‘best business practices’ and has tangible requirements before an organization can be certified (i.e. Various ISO standards would still register organizations who were not adhering to even basic environmentally responsible standards, who didn’t have humane employee policies in place etc. – things which the average consumer may deem to be inappropriate).
  • ISO 9001:2000 does not give too much practical advice but instead focuses on general principles. In order to create a standard applicable to almost any kind of organization, specific requirements and tools were avoided whenever possible. Organizations participating in Quality in Business Certification receive practical advice on how they may improve and suggestions on what tools may be beneficial to their organization – at no cost.
  • Each organization, regardless of industry, has unique concerns and considerations, which means that the type and extent of their documentation should be developed to suit their unique business needs. ISO 9001:2015 prescribes very little with regards to “documented information”, and there are no longer a minimum of required procedures, or even the requirement for a quality manual. Organizations participating in Quality in Business Certification are provided with a detailed report of areas that could be improved and actionable advice and tools on how to do so.
  • ISO 9001 does not prescribe a specific technical approach to product quality, only management system requirements. A company that produced poor products before being ISO 9001 certified may still continue to do so, only now they have a management system to do it more consistently.
  • Requirements about Outsourced activities are not properly mentioned in the ISO 9001 standard.