The Status of the ISO 9001 Revision and Its Impact on Other EMS and QMS Standards

Delayed Progress: The Status of the ISO 9001 Revision and its Impact on Other IATF, AS, EMS and QMS Standards

ISO 9001, a cornerstone of Quality Management System (QMS) frameworks globally, was slated for its regular five-year review in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic. Prior to this, all ISO standards went through a systematic review every five years to determine whether it is still valid or needs updating due to technology or other factors. However, the complexities of convening face-to-face meetings amidst the pandemic led to a decision to defer the revision by another five years. This delay, while necessary given the circumstances, prompted industries reliant on ISO 9001:2015 as a foundation, such as automotive and aerospace, to explore alternative avenues for updating their respective standards.

IATF 16949:2016 and AS9100:2016 – to update or wait?

The automotive and aerospace industries, deeply entrenched in their quality management systems, couldn’t afford to wait thirteen to fifteen years between ISO 9001 updates. Despite the delay in the ISO 9001 revision, both sectors had mechanisms in place to evolve their standards without relying solely on ISO’s timeline. For instance, the automotive industry has IATF 16949® along with Sanctioned Interpretations and Customer-Specific Requirements, while the aerospace industry utilized resources like the IAQG Supply Chain Management Handbook and IAQG Supplemental Rules to update their AS9100 series of standards, along with Customer Flow Down requirements to change QMS deliverables.

Initially, the automotive industry considered forging ahead with updates independently of ISO 9001. However, recognizing the importance of alignment and consistency, they eventually decided to delay changes until the ISO standard underwent revision. In contrast, the aerospace industry faced pressure to update their AS9100, AS9110, and AS9120 standards promptly, while ISO 9001 vacillated on whether to update earlier or not.

Revising ISO 9001:2015 – the timeline

An ISO 9001 strategic team was formed to explore the feasibility of initiating changes ahead of schedule. The strategic team undertook proactive measures to expedite the ISO 9001 revision process. By developing a Design Specification and streamlining the development cycle, they laid the groundwork for an earlier update to the standard. In 2023, following multiple deliberations and votes, the decision was made to proceed with updating ISO 9001. While the ambitious target of completing the update by the end of 2025 was set, the aggressive timeline poses challenges, considering the extensive collaboration required among all the voting countries.

As the projected timeline shows, the ISO 9001 Working Draft (WD) is currently in progress. The ISO Technical Committee will spend about five months, starting in March 2024, developing the Draft International Standard (DIS). At the DIS stage, all interested parties can submit feedback that will be considered before the Final Draft International Standard (FDIS) is published, which is estimated to be in the June through October 2025 timeframe. The International Standard (IS) release is projected for November 2025.  Then companies typically have three years to implement the revised standard.

Since the ISO 9001 committee made the decision to begin the change process earlier, the aerospace standards put a slow down on their development and will now follow behind the ISO 9001 changes.

The synchronized efforts of the automotive and aerospace industries to align with ISO 9001 updates demonstrate a commitment to harmonizing quality management practices globally. However, the anticipated timeline suggests that stakeholders must exercise patience and vigilance as they navigate the complexities of standard revisions. While ISO 9001 may see updates by late 2025, the subsequent adoption by automotive and aerospace standards will follow within six months to a year. Regardless of the timeline, organizations will have a three-year period post-release of ISO 9001 to upgrade their quality management systems accordingly.

What is the status of ISO 14001 and ISO 45001?

Regarding ISO 14001, this Environmental Management System (EMS) standard has also initiated the change process early in 2023. There is a desire to keep changes minor, with the topics of sustainability and global warming issues needing to be added.  It is estimated that this EMS standard will be released in late 2026.

We hear that ISO 45001 is not going through a full revision. With this Occupational Health and Safety standard and the other management system standards, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) announced interim changes to address climate change with the Climate Action Amendment that is now published.

While the delay in ISO 9001 revisions necessitates strategic adjustments, collaborative efforts within sectors ensure a cohesive approach to quality management. As stakeholders anticipate forthcoming updates, a proactive stance, informed decision-making, and continuous engagement will be pivotal in navigating the road ahead. We are still some time away, but as we learn more that we can share, we will continue to keep everyone updated.

SimpleQuE is a leader in AS, IATF® and ISO consultingauditing and training.  Whether you are just beginning the certification process or looking for a partner for ongoing maintenance and internal audits, simpleQuE makes the process easier and more efficient. Contact us for a consult and see the difference that simpleQuE can bring to your quality management process.




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