Many times organizations wonder how they stand to benefit from being certified.
Why do we have to be certified? We have always stuck to working at the high standards; do we still need to get certified?
Well, certification is so much about working against set expectations, mainly to create harmony in the industry. When you decide to comply with certain recognized standards, you will be awarded a certificate as proof of compliance. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) for example has several Certifications that have greatly contributed towards achieving global trade.
So, can your organization fall behind just because you don’t comply with industry standards?
Today a number of companies get ISO certified just to satisfy a single customer. This is because there are those clients who have vowed to work only with organizations that are ISO certified. It is no longer a surprise to come across a request that lists ISO 9001 as mandatory requirement for consideration.
In this case if you are not ISO compliant, you may not be in a position to do business with this client.
ISO 9001 certification which is also the most popular preaches nothing but quality. There are several definitions of quality but the two most outstanding definitions are that quality is;
Conformance to standards
Being fit for use
Every company yearns to provide the best services and offer the best products. Adopting internationally recognized standards will not only improve the level of quality of the organization but will go a long way in placing you on the global market as reliable partner which in most cases leads to new connections and therefore increased trade.
Imagine a situation where clients are not sold on your quality because you cannot show proof of it! It’s only likely that they want to work with you.
Industry standards are arrived at by consensus. Producers and consumers come together, discuss requirements and capabilities and make decisions on possibilities. As such, by getting certified and thereafter complying with standards, you will never fail to satisfy your consumers. Actually certification is like swearing that you will only offer what the customer is looking for!
If you don’t comply, customers will never be sure whether you really have what they need.
One big advantage of ISO programs is that they come with business metrics which allow you to measure your performances against set objectives. This is exactly what you need when doing business. You want to be able to describe processes and communicate progress using facts and figures.
In the absence of certification, you can only hope to be correct. Why… because you may not have metrics against which to measure progress. How would you even tell if you are moving towards your objectives?
Standards also help you develop a professional culture. It’s only natural that you will strive to perform to higher standards if there is a force pushing you in that direction. Many organizations have actually benefitted from working under this “pressure”; they often feel they are obliged to perform to these levels.
This very much contrasts to a situation where you are not certified and therefore do only as much as you can. You will not have the push to work harder which may lead to inconsistency in operations and an unprofessional staff.
It may be harsh to directly relate failure to get certified with falling behind but it is clear that there is always more to cheer about when you are certified than when you not.