Is ISO 9001 certification worth it?

April 3rd, 2023 By Amywright

ISO 9001 is the ISO standard for a quality management system that outlines the requirements for organisations to follow to ensure that their products and services meet the needs of their customers and stakeholders.

Many businesses seek ISO 9001 certification to demonstrate their dedication to quality management. However, is ISO 9001 certification worth the time, effort, and money? In this blog, we’ll explore the benefits and drawbacks of ISO 9001 certification to help you make an informed decision.

What distinguished ISO 9000 from ISO 9001?

Before we delve into the benefits and drawbacks of ISO 9001 certification, let’s first distinguish between ISO 9000 and ISO 9001. ISO 9000 refers to a series of standards that offer guidance on requirements for a quality management system that an organisation can be certified to.

The ISO 9001 standard outlines the prerequisites for a quality management system that organisations can implement to showcase their capacity to consistently provide products and services that meet the requirements of customers, as well as any relevant statutory and regulatory obligations.

The standard encompasses seven essential areas, including customer focus, leadership, engagement of people, process approach, improvement, evidence-based decision, making, and relationship management.

You can read more about the 7 principles of quality management here.

Where is ISO 9001 used?

ISO 9001 is used by organisations of all types and sizes in many industries, including manufacturing, healthcare, transportation, construction, and service industries. ISO 9001 certification is not a legal requirement, but it can be useful for companies to improve their processes, increase customer satisfaction, and gain a competitive advantage.

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Benefits of ISO 9001 certification

  1. Increased customer satisfaction: ISO 9001 certification helps businesses focus on customer satisfaction by providing a framework for continuous improvement. By consistently meeting customer needs and expectations, businesses can enhance their reputation and attract new customers.
  2. Improve processes: ISO 9001 requires organisations to adopt a process approach, which can help identify improvement areas and increase efficiency. By continually improving processes, businesses can reduce costs and improve product and service quality.
  3. Competitive advantage: ISO 9001 certification can be used as a marketing tool to demonstrate a company’s commitment to quality management. This can help organisations to differentiate themselves from their competitors and win new business.
  4. International recognition: ISO 9001 is an internationally recognised standard, and certification can help organisations to demonstrate compliance with global standards and regulations.

Drawbacks of ISO 9001 certification

  1. Time and resources: ISO 9001 certification requires significant time and resources to implement and maintain, which small and medium-sized businesses may not have. Nevertheless, it is an investment in quality management that can improve efficiency and enhance a company’s reputation.
  2. Cost: ISO 9001 certification may require a significant investment, particularly for organisations that require assistance from consultants for implementation and auditing. In the long term, these costs can be recovered by the savings made through the implementation that can outweigh the costs of the certification process.
  3. Limited scope: ISO 9001 certification has a limited scope as it only focuses on quality management systems. However, this can be advantageous as it allows businesses to develop more targeted strategies. Other ISO certifications, such as ISO 14001 and ISO 45001, are available for more focused needs, such as environmental and occupational health and safety management.


ISO 9001 certification can bring many benefits to organisations, including increased customer satisfaction, improved processes, competitive advantage, and international recognition. However, it also requires significant time, resources, and cost.

Organisations should carefully consider whether ISO 9001 certification is the right choice for them based on their specific needs and goals. Ultimately, the decision to pursue ISO 9001 certification should be based on whether it aligns with the organisation’s overall strategy and priorities.

If you are interested in learning more about how we can assist you, please do not hesitate to contact us today. Our ISO experts are ready and eager to assist you in any way that we can.

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Contact Us

For a free Quotation or On-Site presentation by an ISO Specialist, contact us today!

IMSM Ltd Head Office The Gig House
Oxford Street
SN16 9AX

Tel: 01666 826 065