(GENEVA, SWITZERLAND, 6 MARCH 2013) As part of its ongoing revision and development process, the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) has been preparing for the next major revision to ISO 9001 (the last, minor amendment to the Standard was made in 2008). The ISO Working Group (TC176-SC2-WG24) is currently forecasting final publication in the last quarter of 2015.  Before then, however, there are a number of preparatory stages which have to be carried out.


The current ISO timeline anticipates that a draft version of the revised Standard (DIS) will be available in Q2 of 2014. Subject to comment and voting on its content, a final draft version (FDIS) could be available during the final quarter of 2014 with publication of the revised version of the Standard approximately a year later. Clearly this timeline may be subject to delay and date slippage.


At this stage in the revision process, it is uncertain what the precise requirements of the final revised version of ISO 9001 will be. However, it is already known that certain structural changes will be made.
Following the adoption by ISO of ‘Annex SL’ in 2012, all technical committees developing management system standards have to use the same structure, terms and definitions. Management system standards have already been published using this harmon­ised structure (e.g. ISO 20121:2012, Event Sustainability Management Systems) and ISO 9001 will follow this new format during its revision process.
For this reason, we know that the revised version of ISO 9001 will have ten sections:

  1. Scope
  2. Normative references: Both of these sections will have wording that is specific to the Standard (including its intended outcome)
  3. Terms and definitions: This will reference the common terms and core definitions outlined in Annex SL as well as any which are specific solely to QMS
  4. Context of the organisation: This section will include requirements relating to understanding the organisation implementing the Standard, the needs and expectations of interested parties, the scope of its QMS and the QMS itself.
  5. Leadership: Top management leadership and commitment, the QMS policy, as well as organisational roles, responsibilities and authorities.
  6. Planning: Actions to address risks and opportunities, QMS objectives and plans to achieve them.
  7. Support: Resources needed for the QMS, personnel competence and awareness, communication and documented information.
  8. Operation: Operational planning and control.
  9. Performance evaluation: Monitoring, measurement, analysis and evaluation, internal audit and management review.
  10. Improvement: Non-conformity, corrective action and continual improvement.

Aside from some general wording changes (using the term ‘documented information’ to replace references to ‘documentation’ and ‘records’, for example), the text that Annex SL requires to be used contains no specific requirements for ‘preventive action’. Although it is made clear that this is because one of the principal purposes of any management system as a whole is to act as a tool for preventing non-conformity in the first place, ‘preventive action’ may still yet be included in the final revised version of ISO 9001.
Annex SL includes a specific requirement that organisations determine the risks that need to be addressed to ensure that their management system can achieve its intended outcomes, prevent or reduce undesired effects and achieve continual improvement. Each management system standard can define risk in terms that are relevant to their specific discipline; so the revised version of ISO 9001 may do so in relation to product or service conformity and customer satisfaction.


Clearly at this stage in the revision process  no organisation can be sure of the additional QMS specific content that will be included in the final revised version of ISO 9001. Until the final draft is issued towards the end of 2014, no organisation can realistically make any definite forecast about requirements, detailed plans for internal process or procedural revisions, or for ISO 9001 certificate transition arrangements.
Further information and updates on the development of ISO 9001:2015 and its publication schedule will be issued by SGS as they become available.
For more details, please contact:
Chris Trott
Global Technical Manager
Global Product Manager - ISO 9001: 2015

SGS House, Johns Lane, Tividale
Oldbury, West Midlands, B69 3HX
United Kingdom

Alternatively, please contact our expert in your country  by clicking on the “Email Us” link on the ISO 9001 Certification Quality Management Systems service page.


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