As a follow up to an earlier post about simplifying the terminology of ISO9001, I decided to pick another section that seems to give first timers a bit of grief and break it down into simpler parts.
Section 8.2.4 of the standard covers Monitoring and Measurement of Product. This is another section of the standard that can be quite difficult to apply to non-manufacturing industries.
Broken down into its individual parts though it is a bit more management.
"The organization shall monitor and measure the characteristics of the product to verify that product
requirements have been met."
Ok, so what this is asking you to do is determine what your customers require of your product/service, and how to prove that the requirements have been met. This is still quite a "manufacturing" style requirement but it can still be applied to other business types.
Lets take a construction company for example. By setting check points throughout the construction process, you can accurately determine your adherence to customer requirements without waiting till the end and having to make changes.
The second part of this requirement basically echoes what I said in part 1.
"This shall be carried out at appropriate stages of the product realization process in accordance with the planned arrangements (see 7.1). Evidence of conformity with the acceptance criteria shall be maintained."
What this is asking is that throughout your production/service delivery process, that you set checkpoints (where you see fit) throughout the process to ensure that you are still meeting requirements and keep evidence of it.
So in the case of the construction company, keeping evidence of each verification stage (ie. customer
sign off on decisions) would meet this requirement.
The last part is pretty straightforward
"Records shall indicate the person(s) authorizing release of product for delivery to the customer (see 4.2.4). The release of product and delivery of service to the customer shall not proceed until the planned arrangements
(see 7.1) have been satisfactorily completed, unless otherwise approved by a relevant authority and, whereapplicable, by the customer."
This basically just says whoever is responsible for approving your finished product needs to keep records of approval that all requirements have been met before handing it over to the customer.
Hopefully this makes this section a bit more digestible.