International Organization for Standardization (ISO)

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The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is an independent, non-governmental group that develops and publishes standards based on professional research to ensure safety, efficiency, reliability in various situations and industries around the world. Based in Geneva and composed of 165 member countries, the ISO is the planet’s largest creator of voluntary international standards. It was started when delegates from 25 countries met in London in 1946.

The ISO has published more than 19,500 standards on various topics ranging from the risk management governing ISO 31000, to ISO 14000 environmental standards, to the ever popular ISO 9000 quality management standards. Some of the most important to our industry though are ISO 55000, ISO 9000, and ISO 19011:2011.

ISO 55000, Asset management - Overview, Principles and Terminology

ISO 55000:2014 "Asset management - Overview, principles and terminology" is a standard developed and published by ISO that provides an overview of asset management, its principles and terminology, and the expected benefits from adopting asset management. The project was originally started in London in 2010 and the standard was first released on January of 2014. It is still in its first edition.

The general purpose of this standard is to protect the physical assets of a facility. This can include production machinery, protective functions, reputation, intellectual property, and branding, among others.

ISO 55000 is actually made up of three separate, yet related standards. There are ISO 55000, ISO 55001, and ISO 55002. ISO 55000 serves as an overview of asset management, details the principles of the asset management, and gives a list of all terms and definitions related to the topic. ISO 55001 provides the actual requirements for the implementation of an asset management program at a facility. Finally, ISO 55002 details how to actually implement the processes described in ISO 55001.

ISO 55000 is a very versatile standard and can be applied to all types of assets and by all types and sizes of organizations. It can be used in tandem with other ISO standards that relate to management systems. Standards that are compatible with ISO 55000 include: ISO 9001 - Quality management systems - Requirements, ISO 14001 - Environmental Management Systems - Requirements, and ISO 31000 - Risk Management. Compared to other standards, more of the burden for safety is placed on management, rather than on employees.

PAS 55

ISO 55000 was developed based on PAS 55, “Optimal management of physical assets,” a standard originally developed by the British Standards Institution (BSI) and a group of 50 organizations from 10 different countries and 15 sectors of industry. Compared to PAS 55, ISO 55000 offers a more comprehensive asset management focus and isn’t focused solely on physical assets.

ISO 9000, Quality Management Systems

ISO 9000 is a series of related quality management and assurance standards developed and published by ISO and designed to help organizations document and improve their quality management systems. The ISO 9000 standards were originally published in 1987 and have been periodically updated over the years.

Some of the guidelines include standards on how to be customer focused and implement top managerial qualities. The standards apply to a company's quality management system, not its product or service, and so are applicable for almost any company.

This family of standards includes:

  • ISO 9001:2015 - sets out the requirements of a quality management system
  • ISO 9000:2015 - covers the basic concepts and language
  • ISO 9004:2009 - focuses on how to make a quality management system more efficient and effective
  • ISO 19011:2011 - sets out guidance on internal and external audits of quality management systems.

ISO 9000 is one of the most widely adopted and fastest growing quality initiatives in the world. ISO 9000 standards have been adopted by hundreds of thousands of companies worldwide and continue to grow. This growth is especially evident in countries like China, Japan, Germany, and Italy.

ISO 19011:2011, Guidelines for auditing management systems

ISO 19011:2011, Guidelines for Auditing Management Systems, is a standard developed and published by ISO and intended to provide guidance for auditing management systems. It was published in November of 2011 and is the second edition of the standard. It is a part of the larger ISO 9000 and ISO 14000 collections.

It includes information on the principles of auditing, managing an audit program, and conducting management system audits. It also has information on how to evaluate the competence of individuals involved in the audit process, including the person managing the audit program, auditors, and audit teams. ISO 19011:2011 is primarily meant to apply to organizations that need to conduct audits, internal or external, of their management systems.

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Articles about International Organization for Standardization (ISO)
May/June 2019 Inspectioneering Journal

Effective asset management has become no less than a strategic requirement for asset intensive organizations. By integrating available standards such as ISO 9001 and PAS 55, companies can develop a sound asset management strategy.

November/December 2015 Inspectioneering Journal

Maximizing return on investment of physical assets, while at the same time operating safely and in an environmentally responsible manner is now more critical than ever for organizations within the heavy process industries.

Authors: Walt Sanford
July/August 2014 Inspectioneering Journal

One of the more popular topics discussed and debated vigorously in the asset management community is the potential impact of the ISO 55000 series of standards, which was just released in January of 2014 and is the first set of international...

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Since the publication of NACE MR0175/ISO 15156, "Petroleum and natural gas industries- Materials for use in H2S-containing environments in oil and gas production," in December 2003, the ISO Maintenance Panel set up to maintain this widely used...

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