Future Standards in Transition

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Our newsletters provide information on business management systems and process improvement methods. These systems include ISO 9001 QMS, AS9100 Aviation, Space and Defense, ISO/TS 16949 Automotive, ISO 27001 Information Security, ISO 13485 Medical Devices, ISO 14001 Environmental Management Standard, and others. Subjects include performance improvement methods such as Six Sigma, Lean Enterprise, and other topics of interest to our readers.

If you have any questions regarding content, or have a subject of interest for a future newsletter, please let us know!

Future Standards in Transition



Following on the release of ISO 9001:2015 in September, the new AS9100:2016 (and AS9110 and AS9120 standards) are scheduled to be published and released in April 2016.

As we all should know, the deadline for upgrading to the ISO 9001:2015 standard is September 15, 2018 (just under 3 years from now).  The same deadline timeframe will apply to the aerospace standards too.

The current news is that since the three aerospace standards are not being released until April 2016, and required training for 3rd party auditors will not be ready until the fall of 2016, that will only leave about 2 years for your company to meet the requirements of these new standards.

Read on:  In order to be considered fully upgraded to the new aerospace standards, your company must have an upgrade audit, respond to and close out any nonconformance’s, have your audit report reviewed by a Certification Body and have your new audit report uploaded and published in OASIS by the close of business September 14, 2018.


To allow for all these activities to occur, your upgrade must be conducted by June 2018.  So in actuality, aerospace companies have roughly a 21 month window (September 2016 to June 2018) to upgrade, not the 36 months you thought you had.


The majority of the changes to the standard can be found in the current ISO 9001:2015 standard.  The ISO 9001:2015 standard has adopted the annex SL format and so are AS9100, 9110 and 9120 standards.  These revised standards are still in draft mode and still have to be voted on by all sectors (Americas, Europe and Asia/Pacific), approved and published.

The International Aerospace Quality Group IAQG) has posted a  presentation, FAQ’s and comparison between the current and new versions of the aerospace standards on their website.

Click for IAQG Website Information


You could purchase the ISO 9001:2015 Standard to gain an understanding of the new requirements into your aviation, space and defense management system. You could also acquire knowledge of the Annex SL Structure, and view the IAQG link for comparison of the current and new version.

Since the aerospace standards are still in draft form and subject to change. It cannot be determined if they will follow exact ISO 9001:2015 requirements.  Requirements that are no longer required by the ISO 9001:2015 standard may still be required by the AS91XX:2016 standard once they are published.

ISO14001:2015 Environmental Management

rocky_mountain_scene.jpg The revised ISO 14001:2015 Environmental Management System Standard follows a common structure with the same terms and definitions as other management system standards such as ISO 9001:2015. 
The key changes to the new revision include:
  • Increased prominence of environmental management within the organization’s strategic planning processes
  • Greater focus on leadership
  • Addition of proactive initiatives to protect the environment from harm and degradation, such as sustainable resource use and climate change mitigation
  • Improving environmental performance
  • Lifecycle thinking when considering environmental aspects
  • Addition of a communication strategy

A new clause in 14001:2015 requires organizations to understand their context and will require high-level understanding of the critical internal and external issues that can affect their environmental management system.

Organizations have a three-year transition period from September 2015 to migrate their environmental management system to the new edition of the standard.

Organizations using ISO 14001:2004 are recommended to take the following actions:


  • Identify organizational gaps which need to be addressed to meet new requirements.
  • Develop an implementation plan.
  • Provide appropriate training and awareness for all parties that have an impact on the effectiveness of the organization.
  • Update the existing environmental management system (EMS) to meet the revised requirements and provide verification of effectiveness.
  • When applicable, communicate with their Certification Body for transition arrangements.


Contact us with questions and for further information on how we can support your ISO 14001:2015 Environmental Management System Transition needs. 



Customer Complaint Details


An effective organization requires a robust customer complaint system. Complaints communicate customer perceptions of quality, and compose the largest determinant of customer satisfaction.

Unfortunately, the majority of complaint systems are completely reactive: You’re not reaching out to your customer-you’re relying on the customer to reach out to you. This is a risk laden proposition and for every complaint your organization receives, there may be four, five or more you’ll never know about!

Get the Details!
Because of its reactive nature, a complaint system should be used in combination with one or two proactive tools. Here are some suggestions to help you implement an effective system that is capable of improving your customer satisfaction connection.

In addition to your customer service personnel expressing empathy, the person receiving the complaint must gather the correct details. Exactly what went wrong? Allow the customer to provide a general description, then begin to drill down. Typical information includes the following details:

  • What was the exact nature of the problem? Generalities won’t cut it. The problem statement must provide enough detail and depth to facilitate investigation.
  • When did the problem occur? The date is certainly necessary, as might also be the time.
  • Who was involved in the situation? What roles did they play?
  • What product was involved? What were the part or style numbers? Were there any specific batch numbers, serial numbers or other identifiers that provide traceability? Was the problem isolated or generalized across all products?

Also, consider all the steps that constitute a response to a typical customer complaint:


1.  Clearly defining the problem
2.  Identifying the root cause
3.  Proposing a range of acceptable corrective action
4.  Choosing the action
5.  Implementing the action
6.  Following up to ensure the action was effective
7.  Reporting the action and results back to the customer
8.  Updating procedures and other documentation as necessary to reflect changed methods.

The more people involved in the complaint investigation, action and follow-up, the more likely it is the organization will learn from the experience and not repeat the same mistakes.



In the News
FDA Requests Feedback From Public on Food Labeling Terminology     

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is requesting feedback on the use of the term “natural” in food labeling. The action is a response to consumers who have requested that the administration explore the use of this term on food labels, considering the changing landscape of food ingredients and production. The FDA is accepting comments through Feb. 10, 2016.

The FDA asks for information and public comment on questions including:

* Whether it is appropriate to define the term “natural”
* If so, how the agency should define “natural”
* How the agency should determine appropriate use of the term on food labels.
ISO 45001 For Workplace Safety         

Whether you are an employee, a manager or a business owner, you share a common goal – you don’t want anyone to get hurt on the job.

Every 15 seconds a worker dies from a work-related accident or disease, and 153 people experience a work-related injury. These represent an enormous burden for organizations and society as a whole, costing over 2.3 million deaths a year, not to mention the more than 300 million non-fatal accidents.


But with robust and effective processes in place, many incidents can be prevented. This is where the future ISO 45001 on occupational health and safety comes in. Designed to help organizations of all sizes and industries put in place a safe working environment for their employees, ISO 45001 is expected to reduce workplace injuries and illnesses around the world.


For more information on ISO 45001 see the ISO Website.


Survey Says-Quick Poll Results 

What do you think is the most challenging aspect of working with a team?

#1 –  40.5%  Engaging all members
#2 –  34%     Managing various personalities
#3 –  25.5%  Communicating
#4 –    0%     Generating ideas
Source:  Quality Progress Magazine  


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Another business year is coming to a close. Will 2016 be more of the same for you? Think big for a change! The really positive thinker sees the invisible, feels the intangibles, and achieves the impossible. It’s called a quantum leap. Give the following some thought… You don’t have to be content with improving things gradually or incrementally. Historical behaviors can become obstacles to future success.

Start Now!

Happy Holidays and Best Regards,

Walter Tighe and SES Team
Sustaining Edge Solutions, Inc.
Toll Free 888-572-9642


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