Polaris MEP Poised and Ready to Assist RI Manufacturers with ISO 9001:2015 Revision

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This Revision Requires Managing Risk All the Way From Suppliers to Customers

Polaris MEP - Manufacturing Extension Partnership
The bottom line is that companies should come to Polaris MEP for ISO upgrades first because of our expertise, and recently reduced project costs.

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Area manufacturers may soon begin scrambling to comply with last week’s release of latest revision of the ISO 9001 Quality Management System (QMS), ISO 9001:2015.

Now that the revision has been finalized, Polaris MEP (Manufacturing Extension Partnership), a division of the URI Research Foundation, will begin equipping Rhode Island manufacturers with the tools they need for certification. Since many major purchasers require compliance with ISO 9001, the manufacturers who supply them will need to be in compliance in order to continue doing business. Those manufacturer’s complying for the first time will open themselves up to more opportunities once audited and certified.

“Polaris has local resources with access to international expertise and is working to streamline and simplify the upgrade process as much as possible,” said Christian Cowan, Polaris MEP’s Center Director. “This falls directly in line with the state funded Rocket Program by providing the expertise as cost effectively as possible. The bottom line is that companies should come to Polaris MEP for ISO upgrades first because of our expertise, and recently reduced project costs.”

The firm has decades of ISO and other Quality Management System experience in house and has spoken at length during regular sessions since 2014 about the “risk-focused” nature of the 2015 revision.

Project managers John Gilheeney and Jeff Stevens, both longtime experts in the area of Quality Management Systems will lead the charge to prepare local companies for their compliance audits. Gilheeney was co-founder of the Rhode Island ISO 9000 Roundtable. He has 8 years’ experience working for DNV (Det Norske Veritas) Certification, Inc. as a Senior Lead Assessor auditing quality, environmental, health, safety and security management systems against the ISO 9001, ISO 14001, OHSAS 18001, National Bio-solids Partnership (NBP) and Responsible Care® Standards and Technical Specifications. Stevens championed the compliance of Management Systems to ISO 9001, Pharmaceutical cGMP's, and the 16949. He has performed Quality Management System audits in the U.S., Canada, and England.

“ISO 9001 has been the quality management standard, with almost 1 million businesses certified around the world, according to American Society for Quality,“ said Gilheeney. “The standard has had many revisions including, 1994, 2000, and 2008 versions, respectively. But the 2015 revision has an added critical element to consider – RISK.”

Manufacturers interested in preparing for compliance are encouraged to contact Polaris MEP at 401-270-8896 or at polarismep.org.

About Polaris MEP
Polaris MEP is a statewide non-profit organization that provides competitive manufacturing business improvement programs to grow RI’s manufacturing industry. Polaris is an affiliate of the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Manufacturing Extension Program (NIST MEP) and a business unit of the University of Rhode Island Research Foundation. Since 1996 Polaris has delivered improvement solutions to over 750 Rhode Island manufacturers to help them achieve sustainable and profitable growth.

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Jon Palmisano
Polaris MEP
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