The Scottish Quality Management Centre (SQMC) yesterday hosted the first internationally accredited ISO 9001:2015 Auditor Transition course in the country, at its Dunfermline headquarters.
The single day open-to-public event, which constituted 'Module 2' of the International Register of Certificated Auditors (IRCA) qualification update scheme, was predominantly attended by experienced internal and lead auditors of Quality Management Systems (QMS), as well as some internal SQMC staff.
It was the culmination of several weeks hard work behind the scenes by the course developers, who were keen to create an enjoyable and logical learning experience to convey the changes between the current ISO 9001:2008 Standard, and the hotly anticipated ISO 9001:2015 supersession.
Potentially applicable to all industries and service provisions
Leading the development project - and the course itself - was Ron Rivans, SQMC's Technical Director and West of Scotland Chartered Quality Institute chairman. Upon leaving the training room, Ron's immediate reaction was extremely positive:
"This was a very worthwhile exercise," he explained, "it is always good to be first and today's event was substantially ahead of any accredited workshops scheduled by our peers.
"Having so many delegates attend the course from very differing organisations and industries enhances the sense of achievement throughout the SQMC team which contributed towards the course production."
Among the attendees were representatives from sectors such as oil and gas, nursing, building, business services, and medical pharmaceuticals.
"The information Ron brought across was exceptionally well received by the delegates," elaborated SQMC Managing Director, Ian Hannah, who had a supporting tutor role. "They were all dedicated Quality professionals - very enthusiastic - and they appreciated the way SQMC have structured the learning process."
Demystifying some dramatic changes
The creating of the course was prompted by the latest revision to the ISO 9001 document that brings in some quite dramatic changes, additions, as well as omissions. Changes that are fundamentally improvements, according to Ron:
"Through the knowledge gained on the day, the course participants felt that the new Standard would be easier to follow because of its clearer language, and more logical approach to the management of a Quality System. New clauses of the Standard appear to be well understood, as demonstrated by various exercises the candidates completed throughout, and everyone left enthused by their applicability to an improved QMS.
"The delegates felt that their organisations would be better protected and better served by the introduction of risk-based thinking, which was designed to obviate potential failures in their processes."
Further opportunities to update
Those who missed out on yesterday's pilot module will have more opportunities to attend in 2016, at the Scottish Quality Management Centre, on either the 10th February or 4th May. Places cost £399 + vat, however applicants updating a previously-gained SQMC qualification are being awarded with a £100 loyalty discount on the advertised price.
For more information, please visit www.QualityAuditor.co.uk or call SQMC on 0333 939 0045.