Content By William A. Levinson

William A. Levinson’s picture

By: William A. Levinson

William A. Levinson’s picture

By: William A. Levinson

Joseph Juran once warned1 that ISO 9001 standardizes mediocrity, and users often discover that it does not deliver outstanding or world-class results. This is not because of any inherent problems with the standard, but rather the manner in which organizations use it. If their goal is solely to “get the certificate” to satisfy their customers, the outcome is similar to that of a student who crams for an exam solely to pass the test and get credit for the course.

William A. Levinson’s picture

By: William A. Levinson

‘We’ve always done it that way” explains why many suboptimal and even obsolete methods are taken for granted. The range chart for statistical process control (SPC) is, for example, somewhat inferior to the sample standard deviation chart, and it is almost certainly a holdover from when all calculations had to be done manually.

William A. Levinson’s picture

By: William A. Levinson

Among other requirements ISO 9001:2015, clause 4.4.1 requires an organization to identify the inputs and outputs of the processes of the quality management system; identify the sequence and interaction of these processes, noting that handoffs between processes often create risks; and identify the resources required by the processes. These provisions are consistent with the supplier, input, process, output, customer (SIPOC) model that treats processes as internal customers and suppliers.

William A. Levinson’s picture

By: William A. Levinson


‘Sitting is the new smoking” is a common new adage. James Levin, M.D., of the Mayo Clinic explains, “Too much sitting also seems to increase the risk of death from cardiovascular disease and cancer.” He adds that sitting for four rather than two hours a day in front of a TV screen increases the chance of death from all causes by 50 percent, and similar problems apply to sitting at a desk or in a car.

William A. Levinson’s picture

By: William A. Levinson

Sept. 22, 2018, is the deadline for registration to ISO 9001:2015, and this seems to allow organizations plenty of time to make the transition to the new standard. The good news is that, despite the radical changes to the standard’s structure, the underlying requirements are not particularly different. This means that no extensive overhaul of existing documents and processes is necessary. The bad news is that the transition must be performed well before the deadline, and ISO 9001:2015 is therefore closer than we think.

William A. Levinson’s picture

By: William A. Levinson

William A. Levinson’s picture

By: William A. Levinson

ISO 9001:2015 clause 4.2—“Understanding the needs and expectations of interested parties” requires the organization to determine the “requirements of these interested parties that are relevant to the quality management system.” The recent two-day conflict that Facebook lost to F.B. (Fluff Busting) Purity and Adblock Plus illustrates the rare but important situation in which houses of quality contend much as the houses of Capulet and Montague feuded in Romeo and Juliet.

William A. Levinson’s picture

By: William A. Levinson

William A. Levinson’s picture

By: William A. Levinson


ISO 9001:2015, Clause 4.2—“Understanding the needs and expectations of interested parties” requires the organization to determine the “requirements of these interested parties that are relevant to the quality management system.” When customers block an organization’s content, it is a sure sign that the organization has failed utterly to meet this requirement. Microsoft, YouTube, and various other advertiser-supported websites exemplify this failure.