The cost of the ISO 9001 certification process could sometimes make organizations uncertain whether they should go for it. However, obtaining ISO certification can potentially save cost by increasing your organization’s profit and meeting customer satisfaction.
It takes time and effort to wholly understand the processes and costs. In this page, we’re sharing lists of how to estimate the cost, how to reduce the cost, and why the cost will be one of the best investments you’ll take.
ISO 9001 Certification Benefits
An organization should know that its processes, products, and services guarantee a return of investment.
– ISO 9001 certification serves as an organization’s investment in growth.
– Organizations with ISO-based Quality Management Systems improve their productivity, which leads to financial growth and increased revenue.
– Employees become aware that their organization is willing to invest financially on them through quality processes, resources, and training. This then causes employee engagement, where the staff is able to contribute to the organization’s overall efficiency.
– Being ISO 9001 certified creates beneficial relationships with all interested parties, including customers, employees, contractors, suppliers, stakeholders, potential business partners, governments, and the community.
– Sustain success in internal communication, risk management, and quality of products and services.
– ISO 9001 certification aids organizations in meeting and exceeding customer satisfaction.
– Attain a competitive marketing advantage by becoming an internationally certified organization.
Parts of ISO 9001 Certification Cost
1. Using a registrar’s services
A registrar conducts the registration audit. The cost depends on the number of employees, how intricate your organization is, and the time spent in auditing.
The cost will cover travel expenses, administrative fees, and accreditation fees. It is advisable to look for a registrar locally and one who is using free service.
2. Internal Resources Expenses
Your organization must estimate the time your employees will spend on building and implementing a Quality Management System. This will involve training, research, allocation of resources, or changes in processes.
3. Outsourcing Help
This could come from the purchase of tools to help you with the process or consultant fees. External help is normally considered when employees do not have experience in Quality Management System and ISO 9001 implementation.
Factors Influencing ISO 9001 Certification Costs
Many costs associated with implementing ISO can be expensive. Yet, you can control certain aspects such as the internal resource cost or consultant fees.
For this reason, ISO 9001 certification’s price varies from organization to organization. To get a general idea, you may request quotations from certification bodies. Your organization could also speak to several certification services to compare possible costs of certification over three years and re-certification costs.
Likewise, including other standards associated with health, safety, and environmental systems, can greatly influence the costs of ISO 9001 certification.
1. Organization’s size and complexity
Complexity and size pose a massive impact on implementation costs. You can control the size by limiting the scope, which identifies what parts of your organization are within or excluded from certification.
Furthermore, your organization must carefully study whether to include branch offices or locations in the auditing as this will lead to additional expenses.
2. Implementation costs
Decide whether to use a consultant or do the implementation in-house. Your organization will be able to save up to £300 per day if you will not hire a consultant to help your organization with implementation and documentation.
When doing the implementation internally, your organization must assess the costs of resources, time, and staff, required for the project. It should also include training for employees and developing documentation.
3. Certification fees
Certification fees depend on your organization’s size and the number of branches or operational sites. Your organization must also evaluate the levels of risk associated with your products or services.
4. Post-certification costs
ISO certificates are issued for a period of three years. Your organization must still undergo twice a year or yearly surveillance audits to establish consistent compliance with the standard.
Take note that annual audits approximately costs £1000 while a re-certification audit can cost around 60% of the initial assessment fees. Moreover, some certification bodies charge a registration fee of around £100-£400 every year. Overall, your organization should anticipate ISO certification costs of up to £3500-£4500 for three years.
How to Reduce the Cost of ISO 9001 Certification
Here’s the best part — your organization has the freedom on how to implement ISO 9001. How you decide and plan the implementation will significantly affect the cost. Remember, you can improve efficiency by doing more with fewer resources and reducing cost.
- Secure a copy of the relevant standard.
This is to ensure that your organization’s processes and strategy will meet the requirements. You may check ISO.org for a complete price list.
- Weigh the effects of hiring a consultant.
As mentioned earlier, your organization can create a plan rather than hiring a consultant. But if you wish to use the service of ISO consultants, they will do the entire process for your organization. However, you must be able to pay for the transfer of knowledge to the consultants so they can design the Quality Management System.
- Reach out to multiple certification bodies.
Get quotes from more than one certification service to determine the full costs, including surveillance visits. Ask certification bodies if they offer special rates for your type of organization.
Be vigilant about hidden fees. Prevent unnecessary expenses by discussing the quotation with the senior management and department heads.
- Provide training.
Give employees the necessary workshops, courses, and seminars so they can positively maximize their capabilities and assist in the implementation.
In addition, competent and reliable employees minimize risks and problems, which can help your organization save money.
- Allocate resources accordingly.
Maintain and make your resources available to the staff. Set realistic timelines so you can estimate the duration of the implementation and number of auditing days.
- Consider performing a gap analysis.
Do this especially if your organization has already implemented some parts of the ISO standards. A gap analysis identifies any gaps within your system and the standard’s requirements. Your organization could then improve those gaps before an audit.
- Use Integrated Management Systems.
It is cost-effective and time-saving to implement multiple standards together as an Integrated Management System. Implementing two or more standards reduces management reviews, documentation, and integrated audits.
- Reduce the amount of paperwork in your system.
Documentation can be done digitally, which is more efficient than keeping piles of paper. Make use of documentation templates for the convenient recording of your Quality Management System.
Do not let ISO certification costs put you off. The key is for your organization to fully understand the standards, especially the benefits, to make it easier to determine the price range, reduce the cost, and estimate the ISO 9001’s certification fees.
Carefully consider how being ISO 9001 certified is beneficial to your organization’s processes, customers, employees, products, services, and overall operations. In this way, you will be able to look beyond the costs and see that this is an improvement and investment you don’t want to miss.