Experiences of Iso 9000 with Small Firms in Building Services

In: Business and Management

Submitted By nileshtpaf
Words 1908
Pages 8
Experiences of ISO 9000 with small firms in building services

M.A. Atherton and
P. Austin

The authors
M.A. Atherton is based at the School of Engineering Systems and Design, South Bank University, London, UK. P. Austin is with Austin Hall Management Consultants Ltd, Woking, UK. Introduction

Small firms
In the context of quality systems a small firm has been defined[1] as one run by a single manager who is the owner, or in close touch with the owner, and who knows the proce- dures which everyone in the firm should be following. Recognizing that definitions vary, more than 85 per cent of UK firms are classi- fied by Manchester Business School[2] as small. There is usually little formal manage- ment structure in a small firm, the manager effectively acts as a quality manager by fre- quently checking all the firm’s activities and so assurance of quality depends more on staff competence than documentation. Small firms often feel that they provide a better quality service than many larger firms which have the standard; thus if the client insists on the stan- dard they risk losing a good service. However, small firms often do not fully appreciate that as they grow these hands-on management Abstract
Describes an approach for overcoming some of the barriers to achieving ISO 9000 faced by small firms in the building services sector. Draws on the experiences of several firms to illustrate the importance of partnerships in overcoming some of the difficulties in translating the standard, with its manufacturing bias, to the business of small service organizations. It is apparent that the overlap between sections within the standard means that in satisfying some paragraphs others are also satisfied. This can be a source of confusion for the owner-manager of a small firm grappling with the concepts of ISO 9000.…...

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