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ISO Releases Update for Guidance on Integrated Management System Standards

Features illustrations as applied in real-world organizational contexts

Published: Tuesday, November 20, 2018 - 11:32

(ISO: Geneva) -- The number of management systems has risen dramatically in recent years, reflecting the needs and demands of more organizations looking to improve their performance across a wide range of areas and sectors. And most companies have more than one. The International Organization for Standardization’s (ISO) useful guide to integrating management system standards—whether they be from ISO or not—has just been updated.

From improving quality to energy efficiency, environmental performance, or even road traffic, the increasing use of management systems attests to progressively complex operating environments and contexts. The quest for continual improvement and sustained performance has prompted the need for a handbook to help guide organizations through effective management system design that is agile and integrated, to respond and grow.

ISO 9001 (quality), ISO 50001 (energy), and ISO 14001 (environment) are some of ISO’s most well-known and used management system standards (MSS) amongst more than 60 MSS that make up the  ISO portfolio, which also covers areas such as organizational health and safety (ISO 45001), food safety (ISO 22000), education (ISO 21001), and information technology (ISO 27001). Unlike other types of standards, MSS have an impact on many different aspects and functions of an organization and, increasingly, companies have more than one management system.

First published in 2008, The Integrated Use of Management System Standards brings together international expertise, diverse industry case extracts and implementations, and best-practice guidance on integrating management system standards. It has just been updated to reflect the vast number of changes to both ISO and non-ISO standards.

Michael McLean, convenor of the ISO working group that developed the handbook, says having effectively integrated management systems can assist an organization in a variety of ways.

“Many organizations benefit from multiple management systems to help them ensure their systems and processes are in line with their objectives and help them maintain their business model through ever-changing environments,” says McLean.

“This handbook provides a practical guide for organizations to effectively align their management systems with their strategies, plans, and operations. It features illustrations as applied in real-world organizational contexts and relevant case studies, all of which can be applied to all kinds of sectors and industries. It is applicable to any kind of MSS, not just those published by ISO.”

The integrated use of management system standards was developed by the ISO technical committee ISO/TMB/JTCG-TF 05, IUMSS Handbook revision. It is available from your national ISO member or through the ISO Store.

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The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is the world’s largest developer and publisher of international standards. ISO is a network of the national standards institutes of 162 countries, one member per country, with a Central Secretariat in Geneva, Switzerland, that coordinates the system. ISO is a nongovernmental organization that forms a bridge between the public and private sectors. ISO enables a consensus to be reached on solutions that meet both the requirements of business and the broader needs of society. View the ISO Standards list.