Critical factors for effective implementation of ISO 9001 in SME service companies

Evangelos L. Psomas (Department of Business Administration of Food and Agricultural Enterprises, University of Ioannina, Agrinio, Greece)
Christos V. Fotopoulos (Department of Business Administration of Food and Agricultural Enterprises, University of Ioannina, Agrinio, Greece)
Dimitrios P. Kafetzopoulos (Department of Business Administration of Food and Agricultural Enterprises, University of Ioannina, Agrinio, Greece)

Managing Service Quality: An International Journal

ISSN: 0960-4529

Publication date: 7 September 2010

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to investigate the critical factors for the effective implementation of the ISO 9001 standard in small and medium enterprises (SMEs) operating in the services sector.

Design/methodology/approach

An empirical study is conducted with a sample of 93 ISO 9001:2000‐certified Greek service companies. Data are obtained by a questionnaire survey of the managers responsible for quality in each of the sample firms. Individual critical factors for ISO 9001:2000 implementation are assessed for importance by simple descriptive statistics. Exploratory factor analysis is then applied to refine these individual critical factors into five latent constructs.

Findings

All of the individual critical factors examined in the study are assessed as being of some importance with regard to their contribution to ISO 9001 effectiveness. The five latent constructs of the underlying structure of these critical factors are (in descending order of importance): “internal motivation of company”; “attributes of company”; “employee attributes”; “requirements of the quality system”; and “attributes of the external environment”.

Research limitations/implications

The study is limited by the small size of the whole sample and sub‐samples of SMEs. Future research could utilise a broader sample of private SME service companies.

Practical implications

This study provides practical guidance for SME service companies that wish to implement the ISO 9001:2008 standard effectively.

Originality/value

Several authors have noted that more research is required into the critical factors for effective implementation of the ISO 9001 standard, especially in SMEs. In addition to assessing the importance of various critical factors, the present study defines their underlying structure in terms of latent constructs, thus identifying the broad critical areas that require attention for effective implementation of the quality standard.

Keywords

Citation

Psomas, E., Fotopoulos, C. and Kafetzopoulos, D. (2010), "Critical factors for effective implementation of ISO 9001 in SME service companies", Managing Service Quality: An International Journal, Vol. 20 No. 5, pp. 440-457. https://doi.org/10.1108/09604521011073731

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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