San Antonio TX — While ISO issues its periodic user survey asking for public input on what is needed to improve the next revision of ISO 9001, expected by many to be a major change to the current ISO 9001:2008, the leadership of the US Technical Advisory Group to ISO TC 176 is presenting a set of speeches entitled “Dramatic Changes to ISO 9001” at a $1,000 a head event in San Antonio.

The ISO 9000 User Survey was released in October of 2010 by ISO’s Technical Committee 176, the committee responsible for development of the ISO 9000 family of standards, with a target deadline of February 2011 to receive all feedback. Presumably, ISO’s TC 176 would then take time to collate and analyze the feedback, using it as a guideline towards what changes the public and ISO 9001 end users want in the next version of ISO 9001.

Meanwhile, however, two representatives of the US Technical Advisory Group (TAG), the committee which represents the US to the international ISO TC 176, have already begun cashing in with their vision of what changes will be featured in the upcoming revision, months in advance of the data analysis of end user feedback. The upcoming International ISO 9000 Conference, scheduled for the week of March 13th, 2011, features speakers Lorri Hunt, cited as “Chair for the US group responsible for developing consensus positions related to ISO 9001 and 9004” and former US TAG Chairman and frequent ISO 9000 book author Jack West. Mr. West is also Chairman of the organization that puts on the annual conference.

In some hyperbolic marketing language sent out in a blast email by the conference organizers, and co-sponsored by ASQ, the speeches by Hunt and West will discuss:

  • How Radically Different Might the Next ISO 9001 Be?
  • Could the Proposed Changes Have Monumental Impact on MSS Users?
  • Implications of High Level Structure and Identical Text
  • Leading Trends in QMS Applications
  • How to Incorporate New Tools & Techniques into Your Existing QMS
[For a PDF flyer of the event, with more such language, click here.]

This contradicts language from the official ISO TC 176 site, which indicates that “now ISO/TC176/SC2 is considering whether ISO 9001and ISO 9004 (and related standards in the ISO 9000 family) should be revised, and what such revisions should consist of.” The language of the official ISO website implies that only opinion gathering is underway at this time, while the speeches by Mr. West and Ms. Hunt imply that the process is so far along, it is ready for not only public release, but at a fee of between $995 to $1,045 per head.

This would imply that the US TAG leadership has already developed its vision of ISO 9001:201x, to a level of detail including text changes, and the “new tools” referenced in the standard, without taking into account any feedback from actual users of the ISO 9001:2008 standard.

“This is another gross abrogation of responsibility by the US TAG leadership,” Christopher Paris, Oxebridge VP Operations, said. “They are profiteering on a standard that the rest of the world has not even yet begun writing, marketing it as if it’s already a done deal, and doing it a thousand-dollar-a-plate event. The irresponsibility of Ms. Hunt and Mr. West is beyond the pale, and ISO 9001 end users need to recognize this for what it is, and reject such sellers of misinformation.”

“The next release of ISO 9001,” Mr. Paris continued, “is far from taking any shape or form that could be sold the the public as worthwhile in any sense. Anything that Ms. Hunt or Mr. West charge their guests $1,000 for is nothing more than their own speculation, or — worse than that — concepts generated in a vacuum, without the input of ISO 9001 end users. That dooms the next version of the standard to further irrelevance, and further rejection by the international user community.”

in March 2010, Oxebridge published an open letter asking ISO TC 176 and the US TAG to consider the threat of CMMI to ISO 9001, and to consider ways to adopt elements of CMMI in the next release of ISO 9001. Oxebridge received positive responses from international organizations including ISO TC 176’s Chair Charles Corrie, ANAB’s Randy Daugherty and other bodies and individuals, but was notified that without official representation of the position by the US TAG — which represents the US to ISO — no action could be taken. Since the publication of that article, which was emailed to each of the leaders of the US TAG personally, no response was ever received by Oxebridge by any representative of the US leadership.

Oxebridge urges all end users of ISO 9001 to not only complete the online survey offered by the ISO Technical Committee, but to email Charles Corrie, ISO TC 176′ s chair, indicating displeasure with the actions being taken by the US TAG leadership, and calling for ISO to take action to stop the for-fee spread of misinformation on the development of ISO 9001.

[This article has been sent to both Ms. Hunt and Mr. West for their comments, and will be updated accordingly if replies are forthcoming.]


ISO 17000 Series Consulting