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.
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.
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”.
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.
This study provides practical guidance for SME service companies that wish to implement the ISO 9001:2008 standard effectively.
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.
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/10.1108/09604521011073731Download as .RIS
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