The ISO 14001 Deadline is Looming – Turning hassle into success
If you have an ISO 14001 EMS you need to think now about updating to the new standard. The deadline for this is September 2018.
I see that many organisations are worried about the doing the transition – they don’t know what’s involved, how to do it or whether they have the commitment from their bosses. You know what it feels like – it’s a hassle, like pushing a boulder up a hill. So they leave it for now … then suddenly it’s mass panic to get it done in time!
Take one company I helped recently, they first put in their EMS to show their customers just how committed to the environment they are. They already did lots of good green stuff but it was a bit sporadic & they wanted to shout about their successes – hence a formal ISO 14001 system.
But their certification audit was looming – they were feeling a bit lost, particularly as some of their key personnel has recently left … their EMS was left hanging.
Looking at the system with a fresh pair of eyes (mine!) helped them immensely – showing where they needed to focus, rather than getting bogged down in the detail.
The new standard has lots of subtle & not-so-subtle changes, so we went through exercises on these – allowing staff to come up with ideas, contribute their knowledge of the wider business & their enthusiasm.
It seemed daunting to start, but we turned uncertainty into success with relatively little hassle!
So, what are the major changes for ISO 14001:2015?
- Consider the context of the organisation, risks & opportunities, also interested parties.
- Top management must demonstrate leadership & align the EMS to the overall business strategy.
- Consider a life cycle perspective when identifying aspects and in the procurement and design of your products and services.
- Ensure evaluation of performance, compliance & effectiveness of the EMS.
I have worked with a number of organisations (large & small) and spoken to many others. They tell me the leadership and lifecycle elements of the new standard are the ones they find the biggest challenge.
So do get started with your transition work now – let’s turn that hassle into success!
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