Tool for business

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 14 September, 1995, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 14 September, 1995, 12:00am

SO what exactly is ISO? 'There is a famous Chinese saying which can be used as an answer to this question,' according to Lai Lin-shing, senior electronics engineer in one of the Medical Electronics Projects and Procurement Sub-Divisions.

'The answer is: a new bottle containing old wine.' This analogy was also used in the August issue of the Biomedical Engineering Services Newsletter to let the division's staff and customers know the sub-divisions had received the internationally-recognised certification.

It means the ISO 9000 series is simply a new name for a series of quality standards documents.

Or, to put it another way, it is a management tool for running a business.

The ISO 9000 series of quality management and quality assurance standards is now one of the favoured ways of defining a company's standards.

Created by the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) in 1987 and updated in 1994, there are three internationally-recognised standards.

ISO 9001 is the most comprehensive and covers business processes from design to production and servicing.

ISO 9002 and ISO 9003 are for companies that do not need to go into such depth, such as those that do not design their own products.