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FAQ- Frequently Asked Questions - X.CERT®

What is quality management?

What is quality management? To answer this question, we must first address the question - what is quality? The term quality comes from the Latin qualis and means "as provided". This describes the nature of a product or service. Quality is also subject to change over time, so that the understanding of quality and thus also the requirements of customers for the quality of products and services change. The demands of customers are constantly increasing and, due to a homogenization of the market and the comparability through the Internet, it has become more difficult for companies to win and retain customers.

Now that the term quality has been clarified, the definition of quality management is no longer difficult. Quality management means planning, directing, controlling and improving processes and procedures with the aim of achieving a certain quality of product or service. This does not always have to be the best possible quality. For example, even a "low-cost producer" can introduce a quality management system. In this case, his goal is not to achieve the best possible quality, but a quality level set by him and a reproducibility of this quality level. Quality management and DIN EN ISO 9001:2015 are more flexible than one generally thinks.

Quality management is the oldest management system and began in the course of industrialization, when it was no longer sufficient only to check the quality of the end product, but to ensure in advance in the various production steps, which end result you wanted to achieve. In the past decades, quality management has been continuously developed and numerous tools have been created to support the continuous improvement process.

What is a recertification audit?

A recertification audit is the audit that is carried out when the previous certification cycle has been completed and further certification according to DIN EN ISO 9001 is desired or required.

Details of the recertification audit
A recertification audit is (just like a certification audit and a surveillance audit) a system audit.

In a recertification audit, the duration of the audit and the number of auditors also depend on the size of the company or organization to be audited. A recertification audit (unlike a surveillance audit) again examines the complete quality management system.

A recertification audit is also usually carried out according to an audit plan. This audit plan is made available to the company or organization to be audited in advance by the certification company.

ISO 9001

The internationally recognized standard in quality management DIN EN ISO 9001:2015 is part of the standard series 9000 ff.

Based on the explanations of the basic principles and terms in 9000, ISO 9001 defines the minimum requirements for quality management. It is also described that a quality management should be subject to a continuous improvement process.

The introduction of a quality management system is the decision of a company or organization to focus on the customer. ISO 9001 provides a framework for a company or organization to follow.

The standard is so general that it can be used for all companies (e.g. service providers) and all other organizations (e.g. non-profit organizations). This is made possible, among other things, by the fact that points from chapter 7 (product realization) of the standard can be excluded.

Certification according to ISO 9001 is possible. The certificate is limited in time. The first certificate is valid for 12 months. After that, there are two surveillance audits. These extend the certificate for one year at a time. After that, a recertification audit is necessary.

During the initial certification and the recertification audit, the entire quality management system is audited. In the surveillance audits, only parts of it are audited.

The quality management standard ISO 9001:2015 is published in 3 languages (English, German, French).

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