Transition to ISO 14001:2015

Monday, January 30th, 2017

PCSG has further strengthened its sustainability credentials and environmental performance with a successful transition to the new ISO 14001:2015 standard.

Confirmation that PCSG has now successfully transitioned to ISO 14001:2015 was delivered this week. The firm’s quality management system (QMS) and environmental management system (EMS) are now both certified in line with the latest standards.

The BSI transition audit examined the degree of integration of the EMS into PCSG’s leadership and business strategy. It enabled the team to showcase how environmental enhancements and continuous improvement is brought into the heart of the business. This includes consistently promoting sustainability within bids, improving information management so as to reduce all types of waste – resources, time and money – proactively reducing the impact of internal operations, measuring and offsetting PCSG’s own carbon footprint and supporting clients with their own environmental management systems.

Across the PCSG business, office recycling and policies around travel are actively promoted – encouraging the use of public transport for example and recording journey details, for calculation of the business’ carbon footprint.

Following this latest success, PCSG’s environmental consultants are now preparing for a new year rush to help the many UK businesses also transitioning to the new 2015 standards, which come into force in 2018.

To date the business has already supported companies in the manufacturing, distribution, telecommunications and further education sectors to make the necessary changes and to prepare for surveillance audits with external assessment companies such as BSI, SGS, LRQA, Bureau Veritas, Force and AJA Registrars.

William Yonge, who leads PCSG’s transition team, said: “The new requirements represent the most significant changes in ISO14001 since 2004 and in ISO 9001 since 2000.”

He added: “We have now been involved in the successful transition of 12 ISO certificates to the 2015 standards for clients, as well as our own QMS and EMS, and consider the new standards to be a very useful tool for improving and integrating environmental and quality performance throughout the organisation.”

The new standards were published in September 2015, with a three-year transition period. This means that after September 2018, previous versions of quality and environmental management systems will no longer be valid.

“We recommend that all organisations plan to make the transition this year, to be completed in good time,” said Yonge.

For more information about how PCSG can help your business transition to ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 contact


Global Growth for ISO 14001 Supports PCSG Increased Turnover

Monday, November 14th, 2016

Recent findings by the international organisation ISO shows an 8% growth in the number of 14001 certifications issued worldwide in the past year. This supports PCSG’s view that we are seeing an increased uptake in organisations looking to implement and maintain environmental management systems.

For a while now we have seen companies in the infrastructure and construction sectors placing growing emphasis on the benefits that both environmental (ISO14001) and quality (ISO90001) management systems bring. Many are seeking to transition to the newly updated, 2015 ISO standards before the September 2018 deadline.

The newly released data shows that there were 1,519,952 ISO certificates issued worldwide in 2015, which is an increase of 3%; whilst the QMS standard ISO9001 remains the most popular, the growth of EMS certificates by 8% shows the increasing relevance of the environment and sustainability to organisations worldwide, a position wholeheartedly supported by PCSG.

William Yonge, MIEMA, ACQI, who heads-up PCSG’s QEMS team, said: “This increased recognition of how ISO 14001 helps organisations meet the expectations and needs of customers by benchmarking environmental performance and service, will continue to help improve business outcomes around the world alongside achieving sustainability targets.” PCSG is certified to the ISO14001 standard.

According to IEMA (Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment) a total of 319,324 ISO 14001 certificates have now been issued worldwide and in a global league table, the UK has held onto fourth position with 17,824 certificates, behind China, Italy and Japan.

With PCSG’s knowledge of the new Standards and expertise in ensuring management systems add value to any organisation, we are well placed to help. Please contact


ISO45001 – The world’s first Occupational Health and Safety Management international standard

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016

The first international standard for an occupational health and safety management system, ISO45001, is under development and due for publication, late 2017. It is intended for an organisation, regardless of size or nature of work, and can enhance occupational health and safety management.

If you do not have OHSAS18001, the British Standard for Occupational Health and Safety Management, then you can benefit from the new ISO45001 standard;

  • Reduce work related accidents and illnesses
  • Reduce or eliminate risks
  • Improve health and safety performance
  • Improve customer confidence in your operations and meet your supply chain requirements
Clark Quality, part of the PCSG group, can help you attain certification to ISO45001. With a wealth of experience implementing and maintaining management systems including health and safety, environment and quality, our expertise are ready to assist.
Already have OHSAS 18001?
Clark Quality are ready to assist to migrate you to ISO45001. We can support you through the process, update and audit your management system and provide guidance and training.

Royal visit for one of our clients

Thursday, August 11th, 2016

After being awarded the Queen’s Award for Enterprise in recognition of its export sales, Cowes based company Spinlock are continuing to enjoy the benefits of this prestigious award, with a recent visit to Buckingham Palace for directors Chris Hill and Caroline Senior and a Royal visit today during Cowes Week by the Duke of Edinburgh.

On Wednesday 10th August Spinlock received a visit from HRH Prince Philip at their production facility in Cowes. His Royal Highness met with Spinlock staff that assembles the products ready for export around the world, as well as formally awarding Spinlock with the Queen’s Award for Enterprise. Also in attendance was HM Lord-Lieutenant, Major General Martin White CB CBE JP, Mrs Gillian Phenix, Deputy Clerk to the Lieutenancy, Mr John Owen CMG MBE DL and Mr Adrian Medley DL.

Clark Quality, (now part of PCSG Ltd) has been providing QMS support to Spinlock for more than 10 years, including the transition to ISO 9001:2015, support with approvals by the US Coast Guard, and the PPE and Marine Equipment Directives, and SOLAS requirements.



Monday, July 4th, 2016

We have now helped four different companies achieve certification to the 2015 Standards, both ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001:2015, including a manufacturer, distributor, further education and a consultancy. All these companies achieved certification at the first pass, with no non-conformities. In addition, we are working with many of our existing clients to complete the transition of their current QMS and EMS certified to older 2008 and 2004 versions in the next 6 months.

Environmental rcognition for King’s College, London with help from PCSG

Thursday, June 30th, 2016

King’s College London has achieved ISO 14001:2015 for its Estates and Facilities department at its Strand campus, with the help of PCSG’s William Yonge.

Since January William has been working closely with the King’s team to develop an Environmental Management System (EMS) that can be used to continually improve the environmental performance of Estates and Facilities, plus achieve certification to the internationally recognised Standard ISO14001.

King’s College London, is one of the top 20 universities in the world and one of the oldest in the UK. The Estates and Facilities department operates across all of the five campuses that make up the University. William has been working alongside the sustainability team at the Strand campus, which was chosen to spearhead the drive for ISO 14001. He has been helping coordinate and raise awareness of waste management and compliance, chemical storage and disposal, catering waste, laboratory waste and emergency preparedness for spills at the 13 buildings that make up the site.  PCSG has also provided internal training to King’s staff on carrying out internal audits.

“It was rewarding to work with such a forward thinking organisation. Helping our clients learn is an integral part of PCSG’s overall consultancy service and I feel we are well positioned to progress to the next stage of their certification over the coming 12 months,” says William.

“William stepped in and over the last six months helped us focus on the development of our organisation’s bespoke procedures and how to embed in the systems already in place, ahead of certification.  He has built excellent relationships with our team at King’s, encouraging collaboration and mentoring staff and the result is that we now have an effective Environmental Management System in place, that will continue to deliver value after certification,” says Kat Thorne, head of sustainability at King’s.


Associated Pallets achieves certification to the 2015 Standards for both 9001 and 14001

Wednesday, June 15th, 2016

PCSG Lt were asked to help Associated Pallets Ltd develop a QMS and EMS to the ISO 2015 Standards, to help their business grow following planned and consistent processes to meet their customer and industry standards.  Associated Pallets manufacture and recycle wooden and plastic pallets throughout the UK from their premises in Hampshire.

We were able to help develop the systems and processes required to meet the new 2015 version of ISO 9001 and 14001 and support and mentor the staff through the whole certification process. The Stage 2 audit was completed, without any issues raised, and the company was recommended for certification to both ISO 9001:2015 and ISO14001:2015.


Significant order for our client’s LNG Simulator training

Tuesday, March 15th, 2016

GTT Training receives its first order for its G-Sim LNG Simulator from L-3 DPA and Chevron

March 14th, 2016. GTT Training, a subsidiary of GTT, the specialist LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) training and simulation provider, announces the award of a first contract to supply its G-Sim LNG simulator software to L-3 DPA Inc. and Chevron.

The contract involves the development of a new LNG Carrier model based specifically of the new LNG vessels owned and operated by Chevron. The G-Sim software will also interface with the Engine Room simulation equipment being provided to Chevron by L-3 DPA.

Used to provide hands-on, real-time training in the processes and procedures that must be followed to undertake and complete any type of LNG cargo related operation, G-Sim provides full simulation of all the systems on a vessel that are involved in the management and handling of the LNG cargo and maintaining the vessel in a safe condition. In addition to the Chevron specific vessels, the instructors will also be able to select from 16 different configurations of LNG Carrier, with the selection being based on tank capacity, containment system and propulsion system, to cater for future requirements.

Developed internally by GTT Training using their extensive experience in the behaviour of LNG and providing training simulators to the maritime industry, G-Sim provides the most effective training platform for training operatives in the handling of LNG.

Ray Gillett, Director and General Manager of GTT Training said, “We are very honoured to receive this contract from both, one of the leading simulation companies in the world, L-3 DPA, and leading LNG operators, Chevron. It is a reflection of our commitment to work directly with the industry to provide the training resources required to ensure high skilled personnel will continue to be available to meet the industries requirements.”


William Yonge of PCSG has been working closely with GTT Training to develop the QMS to provide the essential quality assurance to ensure that the simulation and training provided consistently meets industry, client and their own company standards. GTT Training was formed in June 2014 with the purpose of supporting the LNG industry, by providing high quality, specialist training and technical services to all sectors of the industry.


First client to achieve 2015 Certification

Monday, February 1st, 2016

On 29th January 2016, Tacotherm Ltd of Totton Southampton became our first client to achieve certification to the new ISO 9001:2015 Standard.

Tacotherm Ltd market and sell a range of branded HVAC controls and components from leading manufacturers and suppliers to the plumbing and heating industry. Tacotherm asked Clark Quality (now part of PCSG) to assist them with the development of a QMS which would support their business objectives of ensuring consistent business process to help the business grow and to provide reassurance to their customers.

Working to the new Standard was an extra challenge for all involved, consultants, the company, and external auditors, however the external audits went well and Tacotherm was recommended for certification to ISO 9001:2015.

ISO 14001:2015

Friday, December 4th, 2015


ISO 14001:2015 is hot off the press – the world’s favourite International Standard for environmental management has been brought firmly into the 21st century. This is an important step forward for a critical environmental standard, one that covers all environmental challenges – water, air, soil, waste, biodiversity, ecosystem services, climate challenges, etc. – in one standard and helps organisations to manage them in a holistic manner.
For a world continuing to face environmental challenges, this is excellent news. Doing one’s bit to protect the world has gone from buzz word to strategic business imperative in recent years. And as society and the planet grapple with issues such as natural disasters, deforestation, overpopulation, climate mitigation and adaptation, etc., companies are continuing to recognise the need to manage their environmental challenges and contribute towards finding solutions to the issues facing us all.
“The standard looks very different,” says Susan Briggs, Convenor of the working group responsible for the revision of ISO 14001, who has extensive experience implementing environmental management systems, “but primarily, from a technical point of view, the real changes come from the increased focus on sustainable development. We want to not only prevent pollution, but we want to protect the environment from harm and degradation, so we have incorporated that thinking into the standard.”
For any organisation using or thinking of using ISO 14001 as well as the approximately 300,000 organisations worldwide that are certified to the standard, the revision poses questions like: What are the changes involved? And what must be taken into consideration in the future?

Moving forward
ISO 14001 was first published in 1996, though the need for an international environmental standard dates back to the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio, which put sustainable development squarely on the political agenda.
“In its almost 20 years’ existence, ISO 14001 has been hailed as the world’s most successful environmental standard, its acclaim being attributed both to its accessibility (it applies in equal measure to heavy industry, service and public sectors, and SMEs) and to its ability to help companies deliver business and environmental improvements, cut costs and improve compliance management,” comments Anne-Marie Warris, Chair of the subcommittee with responsibility for ISO 14001.
The current version of the standard dates back to 2004. Life has moved on since then. Awareness of environmental issues, including water availability/use and climate challenges, has come a long way, and it was time to “look at how ISO 14001 can continue to be relevant for modern organisations as they deal with the environmental challenges we all face.”
Moreover, ISO 14001 has not been immune to criticism over the years. Yet many believed there was still plenty of opportunity for increasing the standard’s uptake, though a more strategic approach was needed.

Benefits from using ISO 14001
Achieving certification to ISO 14001 certainly delivers commercial value to an organisation, including reduced greenhouse gas emissions and streamlined waste management, as well as providing a better handle on business risk and competitive advantage. So it’s commercially good for business as well as helping the environment.
Companies report as the dual motivation for implementing the standard the desire to enhance their public image coupled with a general commitment to protecting the environment. “Without a certified management system, we would not be able to win business from many of our customers,” concludes Bob Cutler, General Manager, Oil Testing, at ALcontrol, one of the world’s leading environment and food testing companies that provides analytical services to organisations around the world.

Reaching out
The new version of ISO 14001 aims to reach out to SMEs. Small and medium-sized companies are a bit intimidated by the term ‘sustainability’, but by getting them to think about the concepts of protecting the environment and life-cycle perspective, they will already be on the path to sustainability without even realising it.”
With a stronger focus on performance and outcomes, the new edition should help companies, including SMEs, achieve measurable environmental improvement.

Better strategic fit
There are a number of key changes in the standard. Bringing environmental management to the Boardroom and bringing the Boardroom strategic focus to environmental management is one most noticeable for CEOs and other senior directors. They now have real reason for getting involved in this important area for their business as it links with their activities and concerns.
With the focus firmly on the Boardroom a new clause has been added assigning specific responsibilities for those in leadership roles, which also puts them more in control of their organisational strategies. Management is about processes, but leadership is about behaviour. Good leaders establish unity of purpose and direction within the organisation, sustaining an internal corporate culture in which people can become fully involved in achieving the organisation’s objectives. This involvement of leaders will help optimise the performance of the organisation’s environmental management system, making it more sustainable, cutting costs and helping to preserve the world’s resources for future generations.

Life-cycle perspective
The concept of life-cycle perspective emerges in this version of the standard, which requires organisations to take a broader view and deal with their environmental issues in a more holistic way. The idea involves looking at the performance, not just of the operations of the organisation, but of the products they create and their use and final disposal. Life-cycle perspective does not require a detailed life-cycle assessment but it means organisations needs to think about the life-cycle stages that can be controlled or influenced by the organisation, this can include raw-material acquisition, design, production, transportation/delivery, use, end-of-life treatment and final disposal. What the life-cycle stages are will vary from product to product and from service to service.

Common framework
The latest revision of the standard follows ISO’s common framework for management system standards which provides an overarching skeleton for management systems, including the core text, common terms and core definitions.
This new framework is known as Annex SL by experts, as a reference to the ISO/IEC Directives where it can be found, or as the “High-Level Structure”. It is designed to benefit users and enhance consistency between the different management standards, making it much easier to implement multiple management systems as well as link with common business systems.

So is it more prescriptive or not?
The above implies the standard is more prescriptive as compared to the 2004 edition. But is it? For all its new ‘requirements’,” comments ISO 14001 provides more flexibility for organisations in the way they address the requirements than in earlier versions and places more emphasis on improving environmental performance. It provides a framework for a holistic, strategic approach to the organisation’s environmental policy, plans and actions – allowing companies to set it within the specific context of their organisation.

Contact us for support in achieving ISO 14001:2015 certification.

ISO 9001:2015

Friday, December 4th, 2015


The new 2015 revision of ISO 9001, brought right up to date in response to vast changes in technology, business diversity and global commerce, promises to be the most effective, user-friendly and relevant quality management system yet.
Introduced in 1987, ISO 9001 has been revised four times to date, and the new version – ISO 9001:2015 – is the first major revision since 2000. It has been three years in the making and is the work of hundreds of experts from industry and commerce, standards stakeholders (i.e. consultants, users, test laboratories, certification bodies, etc.), academia and research bodies. The result of this evolutionary process brings ISO’s best-selling standard firmly into the 21st century.

Certified organisations have three years following publication of ISO 9001:2015 in September to align their quality management systems to the new edition of the standard.

Why change?
Many users, happy with ISO 9001 in its current form, may well ask “if it isn’t broken, why fix it?” But this latest revision is a response to vast changes in technology, business diversity and global commerce in the 15 years since ISO 9001:2000.
ISO 9001:2015 recognises the increased prominence of the service sector and its need for quality management. It also reflects calls for greater QMS alignment and integration with an organisation’s business and strategic direction, and makes it easier to adopt multiple ISO business management standards such as ISO 14001 and sector-specific QMSs such as the aerospace industry’s AS9100.

What has changed?
The first piece of good news is that ISO 9001:2015 will be easier to use, particularly in conjunction with other management system standards, and will be less prescriptive – for example, documentation will be less mandated and more user-friendly, and the language has been simplified. It also follows the underlying philosophy that “output matters”, so it will ask if an organisation’s processes are achieving their planned results, and if the system is actually delivering on its promise – central to implementing ISO 9001 – of “providing confidence in the ability to consistently provide conforming products and services”, explains Nigel Croft, Chair of the ISO subcommittee that revised the standard.
ISO 9001:2015 is very much performance-based, combining the successful “process approach” with a new core concept of “risk-based thinking” to prioritise the processes, employing the Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) cycle at all levels in the organisation to manage the processes and the system as a whole, and to drive improvement. This new risk-based focus is intended to prevent undesirable outcomes such as non-conforming products and services.

How will the changes benefit you?
ISO 9001:2015 recognises the importance of the organisation’s business in terms of the type of products and services it provides, their criticality, and the external and internal factors that affect the way it works. The latest version obliges each organisation to think about its own particular circumstances, rather than prescribing a “recipe” for how to design the quality management system. Organisations will therefore have greater flexibility in the way they choose to implement the standard, and the amount and nature of the documentation that is required.
One very important factor has been the greater alignment of structure, content and terminology for all ISO management system standards, particularly evident when looking at the new versions of ISO 9001 and ISO 14001. This is intended to make life easier for organisations needing to address the requirements of several standards in a single management system.

Assets of risk-based thinking
The new version will lead to a more robust QMS because it links the process approach with PDCA and risk-based thinking, and connects the QMS to strategic planning and the business processes. “Identifying risks adds value and opportunities for improvement, and the engagement of top management enhances the chance of success on all levels.
Risk-based thinking will help organisations make business decisions based on risk by providing the structure to manage it,” says Lorri Hunt of US-based quality management system training, auditing and consulting firm Lorri Hunt & Associates Inc. Anni Koubek also views it as the most important change in the new 2015 version, although she adds that it is not one single element that makes this standard different from the 2008 version; “it is the consequent orientation on results and a certain flexibility on how to build the management system that can be seen throughout the standard”.

No problem adapting
Early signs suggest that the drafters of ISO 9001:2015 have succeeded well in developing a more robust QMS that will allow organisations to build confidence in the products and services they deliver throughout the supply chain to customers worldwide. If they prove right, Nigel Croft concludes that organisations currently operating a well-implemented ISO 9001-based QMS should have no problem whatsoever in adapting it to the requirements of the new version.

Contact us for support in achieving ISO 9001:2015 certification.

What benefits will ISO 9001:2015 bring?

Monday, June 15th, 2015


With the revision to ISO 9001 at Final Draft International Stage (FDIS) and the publication of the final draft expected in the coming months, organisations are beginning to focus on their transition plans for ISO 9001:2015.

One of the questions that many organisations understandably ask is “what are the benefits for my organisation and our stakeholders?” Looking at the currently available version of the standard, some of the anticipated overarching benefits are listed below. However, what we do know is that this revision to ISO 9001 is bringing the requirements up-to-date with good management practice; a lot has changed in 15 years since the last significant revision to ISO 9001.

Enhancing continuous improvement
The revisions to ISO 9001 will ensure that your Quality Management System (QMS) is integrated with and aligned to your organisation’s objectives.

By placing more emphasis on Leadership, ISO 9001:2015 will drive greater involvement in your organisation’s QMS by Top Management. This will help to ensure that employees are motivated towards the stated goals and strategic objectives.

Managing risk
ISO 9001:2015 also introduces ‘risk-based approach’. This focuses the organisational resources, on the areas which are most likely to cause concern.

A risk-based compliance program will assist in identifying, managing, monitoring, and reducing the compliance risks key to your business, making board and regulatory reporting easier to conduct and maintain with less work.

Through the use of your QMS as a governance tool, you can identify business opportunities that contribute to bottom line improvements and effectively manage your risks.

Performance Measurement
Self-governance and organisational behaviour have a direct influence on performance and the capacity to create value for customers and employees. Effective performance measurement and self-governance can result in higher levels of innovation, employee loyalty, and customer satisfaction; as well as superior financial performance.

At first glance, the new high level structure common to all new and revised management system standards, Annex SL appears to make the standard writers lives ‘much easier’ but in reality, as organisations begin to understand and appreciate the value of different management systems all speaking a common language, it will be organisations – and in turn the consumer – who stand to be the true beneficiaries.


ISO14001 Technical Committee Launch New Website

Monday, June 15th, 2015

To enable the many thousands of users to see the latest progress in the revision of international environmental management system standard ISO 14001, a  brand new website has been launched.  The website has been launched by ISO TC 207/SC1/WG 5, which is the ISO Committee with responsibility for ISO 14001.

With the revised standard now due for publication in September 2015, the site contains lots of helpful information, including the likely key changes and the benefits of the standard.

Contact Clark Quality for help and support.


ISO14001 Revision Proceeds to Final Stage

Sunday, February 8th, 2015

ISO 14001 on environmental management systems has progressed to Final Draft International Standard Continue reading “ISO14001 Revision Proceeds to Final Stage” »

ISO9001 Revision Moves on to Final Stage

Saturday, November 8th, 2014
A recent vote approved the latest draft of the revised ISO 9001 on quality management systems. The document can now progress to the next stage of the ISO standard development process.

ISO 9001 is undergoing the periodic revision standards generally go through every 3 to 5 years to ensure they are relevant and up-to-date. The new edition, expected in 2015, will feature some important changes.

Dr. Nigel Croft, Chair of the ISO subcommittee that is revising ISO 9001, explains what are the main changes and next steps in the revision

The latest draft (Draft International Standard – DIS) was put to vote according to ISO procedures and received nearly 90% approval, which is enough for it to progress to the next stage: Final Draft International Standard (FDIS).

Experts in the ISO subcommittee revising the standard will now go through all the comments received during the DIS vote in order to produce a final draft which will then be put forward for voting. Once approved, the standard can then be published.

“We are on the right track, and we are on schedule for publication,”says Nigel Croft, Chair of the ISO subcommittee revising the standard. He adds, “The new version is very strongly based on three basic core concepts: that process approach which was very successful in the 2008 version of the standard superimposed on that system of processes is the plan-do-check act methodology, and a third core concept which is new in the 2015 version is risk based thinking, aiming at preventing undesirable outcomes.”

ISO 9001 is one of ISO’s most well-known standards, with more than 1.1 million certificates worldwide. It provides requirements to help companies demonstrate that they can offer their customers consistent, good quality products and services. It also provides a framework to help them streamline their processes and become more efficient at what they do. ISO 9001 can be used by organizations of all types and sizes. The standard has inspired a series of documents for sector-specific applications including for the automotive sector, the medical sector, local governments and more.