How to Get ISO Certification in Pakistan

Certification to an ISO standard is a mark of quality and robust procedures regardless of a facility's industry or country of origin. ISO guidelines and requirements force a company to initiate, document and meet several complicated organizational standards. Pakistan's growing industrial sector is facing increased pressure from other regions and countries to provide products that meet low cost and high quality expectations. Obtaining an ISO certification may help Pakistani organizations accomplish output goals by forcing the introduction of independently verified operations, quality, and management plans. ISO certified organizations also enjoy an increased sense of legitimacy.

Decide which ISO certification would best suit your organization. For example, industrial organizations typically receive a certification from the ISO 9000 line of standards. Outside ISO consultation firms exist to help organizations choose an appropriate ISO standard and then achieve the standard's requirements, the Small and Medium Enterprise Development Authority (SMEDA) warns that such firms often charge between 100,000 and 300,000 Rupees for the service.

Purchase the desired standard from the International Organization for Standardizations.

Assess the ISO standard and discuss among management how to apply it to your organization in Pakistan.

Create a comprehensive quality management system and quality manual to establish an overarching rule set for your organization.

Use the quality management system and quality manual to create an organizational rule structure compliant with the ISO standard. Common ISO standard requirements include a robust record and documentation system, well-defined operational controls, a trained and certified employee base, and system for management to monitor, review and improve upon the organizational structure. SMEDA estimates four to six months for an organization to complete the process.

Contact an accredited ISO certification registrar to schedule an ISO certification assessment. Certification agencies with bureaus in Pakistan include Bureau Veritas, Certification International and QMS. Typically, both a certification fee and transportation and boarding expenses for the registrar's representative are paid for by the requesting organization.

Escort the registrar's representative through a tour of your facility in Pakistan and the procedures. The walk-through may take several days and involves inspections of floor operations and your various record systems, procedures and documents.

Wait for word from the registrar. If your organization passed the ISO assessment, a certification will be awarded shortly. A list of suggested improvements are provided if your organizations fails the assessment, and you are given a period of time to make corrections to your system before the auditor returns for a follow-up assessment.

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About the Author

Brad Chacos started writing professionally in 2005, specializing in electronics and technology. His work has appeared in Salon.com, Gizmodo, "PC Gamer," "Maximum PC," CIO.com, DigitalTrends.com, "Wired," FoxNews.com, NBCNews.com and more. Chacos is a frequent contributor to "PCWorld," "Laptop Magazine" and the Intuit Small Business Blog.