Although there is a plethora of research articles that study ISO 9000 quality management systems and their association with business success, there is little empirical research that can attribute causality to certification. Contributes to the question of causality, through a comparison against a control group of the actual sales and profitability of 400 certified companies pre and post registration. Using a longitudinal methodology finds that, although the performance of certified companies is superior to that of 400 non‐certified firms, there is no evidence of improved performance after registration in the 400 certified firms studied. Concludes, from these findings, that the superior performance of certified firms is due to firms with superior performance having a greater propensity to pursue ISO 9000 registration. Illustrates the potential dangers in inferring that ISO 9000 certification leads to superior business performance. Additionally the findings should give pause for thought for decision‐makers. Certification is a major investment yet the findings show that inflated expectations of performance improvement after ISO 9000 accreditation may be unfounded.
Heras, I., Dick, G.P.M. and Casadesús, M. (2002), "ISO 9000 registration’s impact on sales and profitability: A longitudinal analysis of performance before and after accreditation", International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, Vol. 19 No. 6, pp. 774-791. https://doi.org/10.1108/02656710210429618
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