The new certification demonstrates Zen’s adherence to a number of quality management standards and best practices. It replaces the older 9001:2008 certification, which Zen also held.
Although Zen had a three-year period in which to comply with the latest standards (the deadline is September 2018), the company gained the certification at this early stage, demonstrating its root and branch commitment to quality management.
Paula Ward, Zen’s quality co-ordinator, explained: “This certification continues to promote excellent customer services, delivering customer satisfaction, and emphasises the importance of continual improvement in the business.” She adds, “Rather than thinking of the standard as additional requirements that we have to comply with, we’ve integrated the requirements into our processes so that they’ve become everyday business practices.”
The certification itself will remain valid for three years, pending six-monthly audits to check compliance. After three years a full audit of the business will be carried out to determine Zen’s eligibility for re-certification.
According to Paula, the latest version of the ISO 9001 certification has a greater emphasis on the leadership of the organisation. “It is looking for a demonstrable commitment from top management to the business and its processes.
“The new standard provides a framework for managing and improving end-to-end processes, and managing business and process risks.” As a result, says Paula, “it will help Zen to improve its processes and, ultimately, the service it is able to deliver to customers.”