The ISO 9000 family of quality management systems standards is designed to help organizations ensure that they meet the needs of customers and o
ther stakeholders while meeting statutory and regulatory requirements related to a product or program. ISO 9000 deals with the fundamentals of quality
management systems,including the seven quality management principles upon which the family of standards is based.ISO 9001 deals withthe requireme
nts that organizations wishing to meet the standard must fulfill.
Third-party certification bodies provide independent confirmation that organizations meet the requirements of ISO 9001. Over one million organization
ns worldwide are independently certified, making ISO 9001 one of the most widely used management tools in the world today
International Organization for Standardization (ISO) does not certify organizations itself. Numerous certification bodies exist, which audit organizations
and, upon success, issue ISO 9001 compliance certificates. Although commonly referred to as "ISO 9000" certification, the actual standard to which an o
rganization's quality management system can be certified is ISO 9001:2015 (ISO 9001:2008 will expire by around September 2018). Many countries have
formed accreditation bodies to authorize ("accredit") the certification bodies. Both the accreditation bodies and the certification bodies charge fees for the
ir services. The various accreditation bodies have mutual agreements with each other to ensure that certificates issued by one of the accredited certificatio
n bodies (CB) are accepted worldwide. Certification bodies themselves operate under another quality standard, ISO/IEC 17021, while accreditation bodies
operate under ISO/IEC 17011.
An organization applying for ISO 9001 certification is audited based on an extensive sample of its sites, functions, products, services and processes.The
auditor presents a list of problems (defined as "nonconformities", "observations", or "opportunities for improvement") to management. If there are no maj
or nonconformities, the certification body will issue a certificate. Where major nonconformities are identified, the organization will present an improvement
plan to the certification body (e.g., corrective action reports showing how the problems will be resolved); once the certification body is satisfied that the o
rganization has carried out sufficient corrective action, it will issue a certificate. The certificate is limited by a certain scope (e.g., production of golf balls)
and will display the addresses to which the certificate refers.