ISO 9004 | Meaning and Definition

What is ISO 9004?

ISO 9004 is a document that can accompany the ISO 9001 standard. It guides on achieving and maintaining good performance, emphasizing continual improvement. The focus of ISO 9004 is on the organization as a whole rather than individual processes.

ISO 9004 guides organizations of all types and sizes in any industry. It helps an organization improve its overall performance, including quality management, environmental management, occupational health and safety management, and supply chain management.

How can the ISO 9004:2018 Standard help?

One of the key ways ISO 9004:2018 can help organizations achieve sustained success is by promoting a framework for continual improvement and innovation. In the long run, sustained success means that an organization’s success is measured by its ability to achieve and maintain its goals. Achieving long-term success for any business is a difficult and exhausting endeavor in an ever-changing environment.

This is done through the 8 guiding principles of quality management, which are:

Customer focus, communications, total employee commitment, process approach, integrated system, strategic and systematic approach, fact-based decision-making, and continuous improvement.

Using these principles as a foundation, organizations can create a quality management system tailored to their specific needs and objectives. This system can then be used to improve performance in all business areas, from operations to marketing to R&D.

The role of top management is also emphasized, as it is required to understand the organization’s context and consider external and internal issues. Top management’s attention is on the organization’s capacity to satisfy customer demands and expectations.