With the release of the 2015 version of the ISO 9001 Standard due September next year, some trainee Lead Auditors are asking the question: “is it better to hold off training until the new Standard comes out?”
It’s a good question, but the answer is a resounding “NO!” – according to SQMC Associate Jennie Clark. Here's why...
“The IRCA Lead Auditor courses are intense, with a closed book examination on Day 5,” said Jennie, who herself is an IRCA-approved SQMC trainer, when not on duty as a 3rd party Certification auditor. “It’s far better to get your qualification now, while you can still train to a version of the Standard that you’re familiar with,” she continues, “then attend a far less stressful ‘Transition’ course when the new version is finally released, to keep your qualification up-to-date. Otherwise, you’ll have the added pressure of learning a whole new, very different, ISO 9001 Standard at the same time as training to audit and preparing for your exam.”
SQMC Managing Director, Ian Hannah, agrees: “The 2015 version of ISO 9001 will make sizeable changes to the Standard and its clauses. We welcome the changes, which will greatly improve the overall business systems of all organisations with certified Quality Management Systems; however we currently predict that the new version will not be released before Q4 of 2015. Thereafter, the common practice of ISO has been to allow a three year ‘grace’ period for organisations to upgrade their QMS to the new version of the Standard – and we would expect that to be the case again with the 2015 version.”
“Moreover, we expect auditors trained to the 2008 version will have a similar period of time – i.e. till late 2018 - in which they can attend a Transition course to learn about the new Standard and keep their qualification up-to-date.”
For those seeking to add these qualifications to the CVs while they still can under the 2008 version, SQMC provide a regular schedule of open-to-public Internal and Lead Quality Auditor courses. The Technical Reference Manuals we supply to our students include content on the Draft International Standard (DIS) of 9001:2015 for personal reference. It's important to note that no Certification Body will register against a DIS of any Standard – as there may yet be significant alterations prior to the release of the Final DIS (FDIS). All audits for the time being continue against the 2008 version.
We will begin to offer our customers official ‘Transition’ workshops once the FDIS is released, and will continue to provide them throughout the three year grace period.