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BREXIT and your Quality Management System

Hotspots / Tuesday 28th of June 2016

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Read on for more about how It is almost inconceivable that businesses are not thinking about the issue of BREXIT, at the moment, even if it is not directly affecting them at this time. However, the ISO9001:2015 Standard, now expects the business to consider the external and internal issues and the risks and opportunities which present themselves.

ISSUES are activities, events or objects that can either promote good things to happen, or conversely, cause problems now or in the future. Like BREXIT. In the language of the ISO Standards ‘they may affect the organisation’s ability to achieve the intended outcomes of the system’. They may be caused by changing circumstances as well as your current operational situation.

So what is an external issue or context?

In practical terms this is the business environment and outside factors that your organisation does not have direct control over. These external factors can originate from your competitive, cultural, legal, regulatory, social and technological environments. And in the context of BREXIT, the political and economic landscape too.

And what are the internal issues?

These are the conditions, environment or internal departments that are directly managed by your organisation. It also includes the culture, knowledge, performance and values that are important to your organisation.

If you still have ISO9001:2008, or are in the process of transition from the ISO9001:2008 to the ISO9001:2015 version, you are or will need to consider these macro external issues like BREXIT, if you think that they are affecting you now or will so in the future.The new Standard does require you to do the analysis, mitigate the risk or exploit opportunities where necessary and review periodically. 

Why wouldn't you do this? It makes sense to know what you might have to face. Plan for the worst and expect the best as my Nan probably said once. 

Management tools such as a PESTLE or SWOT analysis are the classic methods of flushing out what your external and internal issues are. If you need help with this, then get in touch. We'll cover more about these in future blogs. Check back, or even better, subscribe to our knowledge base and be the first to learn about them when it opens its doors later in September!