ISO 9001 : Control Of Nonconforming Outputs

In this series of blog posts, I will be taking a look at the main sections of ISO 9001, what they are, why they are important ...

This 101 is looking into Section 8.7 Control of nonconforming outputs. Why is this important to my business? Well, we all want our customers to be happy, don't we? If we send them a product or give them a service that does not do what it is supposed to, they are not going to be happy.

"In the ISO world, this is called a non-conforming output!"

Sometimes it might be a simple fix before the customer even receives the product or service. Sometimes it might require rework or scrapping and restart. If we do not track and fix these issues, they will reduce the company’s profit margins through increased costs and time, whilst also reducing customer satisfaction.

How do I do this? Firstly, you need to decide what a non-conforming output looks or feels like. You can then communicate that to everyone, so they know what to look out for. For example, dents in the product or chipped paint, customer services being rude to customers and so forth.

Then you need to start recording them. This may be as simple as storing damaged boxes or products in a segregated area of the warehouse and filling in a paper form or having a spreadsheet to record any complaints from customers.

All non-conforming outputs need to be corrected where possible and analysed to understand the root cause of them. This then identifies areas for improvement to help prevent them from happening again.

How do I manage this? There are a variety of ways you can manage this. Personally, I use Teamwork. I can create from a task list template a non-conformance and record all the details. This can then be sent to relevant members of the team to deal with the issues and analyse root cause. Any actions can then be monitored through task lists.

Many of the companies I have worked with have found it useful to have an independent person to work with them to help facilitate the creation of a risk register and business continuity plan.


If you would like to know more about anything I've mentioned in this blog post, do give me a call on 01858 414226 or leave a comment below and let's see how I can help you.