Functions of International Standard Organization

The International Standard Organization (known as the ISO for short) is a global organization that works to provide standardization across an array of products and companies. The main functions of  International Standard Organization is to facilitate trade, focus on the process improvement, safety, and quality in several areas.

The International Standard Organization began operations in 1920 as the International Federation of National Standardizing Association (ISA). However, in the year 1942, they were suspended due to World War 2. But immediately after the world war, the United Nations Standard Coordinating Committee (UNSCC) approached them with a proposal to form a rebranded global standard body.

As a result of the proposal, in 1964, the UNSSC and the ISA met and agreed to combine efforts to create a new body called the International Standardization Organization.

The International Organization for Standardization is a stand-alone non-governmental body comprising 165 member countries. Furthermore, they are the biggest developer of voluntary International standards in the world saddled with the responsibility of delivering common standards among nations.

The Main Functions of International Standard Organization

What are the functions of the International Standard Organization? ISO develops and publishes standards for a vast range of products, materials, and processes. Currently, the organization has over 24,362 standards, which are included in the ISO Standards catalog, which is broken down into various segments, such as healthcare technology, railway engineering, jewelry, clothing, metallurgy, weapons, paint, civil engineering, agriculture, and aircraft. In addition to producing standards, ISO also publishes technical reports, technical specifications, publicly available specifications, technical corrigenda, and guides.

Another function of the International Standard Organization ISO is how it plays an important role in facilitating world trade by providing common standards among different countries. These standards are intended to ensure that products and services are safe, reliable, and of good quality.

For the end-user and consumer, these standards ensure that certified products conform to the minimum standards set internationally.

In some cases, “ISO” is used to describe the product that conforms to an ISO standard as a result of the ubiquity of these standards. For example, the speed of film, or the sensitivity of a photographic film to light, is referred to by its ISO number (ISO 6, ISO 2240, and ISO 5800). Below are some other functions of International Standard Organization:

  • They are saddled with the responsibility of developing International Standards, which they achieve through their experts scattered across the world.
  • Guidance of thousands of documents through drafting, review, and publication
  • They actively encourage the teaching of standardization by participating in a joint master’s program. This program aids the establishment of similar programs, and also the maintenance of a database of materials related to standards.
  • To facilitate process improvement, safety, and quality in different areas
  • Development and provision of Market standards regarding market demands.

The Different Standards of International Standard Organization (ISO)

The ISO is the world’s largest publisher of standards in the world. These standards are however crucial for regulating business practices, quality, and manufactured products. Here are The Different Standards of International Standard Organization (ISO) :

  • ISO 9000–Quality Management

For any organization that wants to remain in business, quality should be its topmost priority.  Therefore, the ISO created this standard to help the organization ensure they meet up with stakeholders and customer demands. However, it is imperative that these demands must be within the confines of regulatory and statutory requirements of a product or service.

  • ISO 14000–Environmental Management

This is a variant of all other standards by ISO. It however aims at helping several organizations across the world in reducing the way in which their modulus Operandi affects the environment. Also, it is a means of having organizations comply with rules and regulations, and other environmentally related requirements.

  • ISO 31000: 2018–Risk Management

This standard aims to make the rules guiding risk management actionable, straightforward, and easy to implement by organizations. However, this is irrespective of their size, location, or mode of operation. Also, it is imperative to note that we cannot use this standard for certification. It only serves to help organizations thrive in an uncertain environment and situations.

  • ISO/IEC 27000–Information security and Management systems

With cyber threats on the rise all over the world, we can however not overemphasize the need for adequate provision for information security. On that note, the ISO created this standard to generally help organizations manage the security of their assets. This includes; financial and employee data, intellectual property, etc.

  • ISO 45001- Occupational Health and Safety

Diseases, hazards, and occupational injuries affect the growth and development of any economy to a great extent. However, to manage this problem, the ISO developed this standard in line with the OHSA and IL-OSH guidelines. This provides for the security, safety, and reduction of hazards in the workplace.

Besides the standards we have listed above, there are several other standards from the ISO. You can visit their official website to learn more about their standards.

What Are the 2 Most Popular ISO Standards?

The two most popular ISO standards are ISO 9001 and 14001.8 9001 provides criteria for quality management systems, while 14001 provides criteria for environmental management systems.


What Is an Example of an ISO Standard?

Some examples of ISO standards include the calibration of thermometers, food safety regulations, and the manufacturing of wine glasses. ISO standards also cover shoe sizes, musical pitches, security management, and environmental management.

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