C2.14 Quality Management Systems


A Quality Management System (QMS) is a similar concept to an EMS. It involves the management of quality issues within an organisation.

Whilst an EMS should demonstrate improved environmental performance, a QMS should demonstrate that an organisation’s good and services will comply with applicable legislation and standards and also meet the customer’s needs and expectations.

The formalised Quality Standard is BS EN ISO 9001:2008 – Quality management systems — Requirements. This is an internationally recognised standard. It is very similar in parts to ISO 14001 and the two can be implemented side by side quite well.

A QMS operates upon the same Plan – Do – Check – Act process.

To obtain ISO 9001, an organisation must:

  • Prepare a Quality Policy.
  • Prepare a Quality Manual.
  • Develop and Control QMS documents and records.
  • Identify and meet customer requirements.
  • Establish and maintain Quality Objectives and Targets.
  • Define responsibilities and authorities.
  • Ensure that adequate resources are provided.
  • Ensure employees are competent.
  • Control purchasing activities.
  • Conduct monitoring and measuring activities.
  • Control monitoring and measuring devices.
  • Identify and control nonconforming products.
  • Conduct a QMS Management Review.
  • Conduct Quality Audits.
  • Continually improve quality management.


The benefits of a QMS are very similar to those of an EMS. The benefits include increased efficiency, increased customer satisfaction and reduced costs. It is often a prerequisite in business for organisations to have certification to ISO 9001.