Recently I heard some of the companies claiming that ISO consulting can be off shored and be done in remote place. Although a debatable topic this is what it takes to get certified and the judgment can be yours to make.
The main stages of certification process are:
1) Gap Analysis
2) Project Plan or Planning
3) Employee Training
4) Documentation of QMS
5) Implementation of QMS
6) Internal Audit
Stages where ISO Consulting documentation is involved can to certain extent be off shored but the main structure of an effective QMS and certification is how all the processes interact and flow within organization, employee training ,implementation and internal audits. Getting certification does not complete the work but it is just a start to achieving gains by a successfully implemented QMS.
Cost benefit by ISO Consulting may be there in off shoring but consider the cost of implementing an inefficient system, major and minor finding, irritated registrar and frustrated and overworked employee. There is a communication gap and a lot is lost in translation. Lot of companies have ISO Consulting and sell products manufactured outside the country these days. But the country manufacturing these products also need to stand by the quality. The responsibility falls back on the manufacturer if something fails.
Quality System is the lumbar of any service or product for ISO Consulting. If that part of implementation is off shored how effective will the system be? A quality system will keep functioning in proper manner with periodical audits and surveillance, just like machine needs maintenance in order to function well and to optimum power. Internal audit needs to be onsite to complete the task. If all the costs are considered with personnel flying from other country to provide support as and when needed, getting ISO certification done in country will only make sense.
There are still consultancies that provide ISO Consulting service and claim to off shore it with pricing discount but they have an office in the US and back office in other country. So next time when you hear off shoring ISO and quality system pause to think what is going to be the aggregate cost to your service or product?