We are excited to introduce a new quality mentor on support.jomo247.com, David Smith.
David manages DG Services alongside his wife, to offer ISO consultancy and auditing services to provide ISO certification for small to medium businesses. Read on to find out more about David and his work in quality management systems, or visit his profile and contact him here.
How did you get involved in ISO certification?
My career in quality began quite by accident! In 2010, I met my partner who has now retired. He was a qualified quality consultant, but didn’t have as much experience in business and sales. I had experience in business and sales, and so the business was started.
Now the business, DG Services, is run by myself, having a degree in business management and leadership, and my wife, who is a qualified lead auditor with a background in teaching.
My main role is the management of the business as a whole, and my wife does more of the implementation side of things.
What are your specialisms?
We specialise in providing consultation, auditing, and certification in ISO 9001, 14001, 45001, 27001.
We work across varied industries, and actually see that as a benefit. Going into a new industry means that we go in with an open mind and question things that might not otherwise be questioned.
Each business I go into does what they do best, it’s their business and they know it inside and out. However, that doesn’t mean we can’t go in and improve it – because implementing quality processes and systems is what we do best.
The way we work, we believe that the ISO system should work for the business, not that the business should work for the system.
What is your favourite thing about providing ISO certification?
We are both really passionate about the concept that a well run ISO system will improve a business overall, or within the specific area of business it’s being targeted at.
During my university training, I had an argument with my lecturer about ISO 9001. He was semi-retired, and worked with ISO systems back when they were BS 9000, and was trying to tell me during a tutorial that ISO certification makes companies more focused on box-ticking and therefore less efficient.
I argued that now ISO 9001 now provides real improvement for businesses that can be felt by managers, employees, and customers alike.
Following Brexit as well, I believe that businesses are going to need to be cutting edge, nimble, and efficient. Any business that implements ISO and uses it properly will have an edge on any of their competitors, as well as working day-to-day much more efficiently than they were before.
What does a typical day of work look like for you?
For me and my wife, outside of Covid times, we have a regular system that we have optimised ourselves.
For a small business with 15-20 employees for ISO 9001 we would go in on the Monday, and work on implementation of standard over the first 4 days, followed by the stage 1 audit on Friday. We then let the client work with system for 3 weeks whilst offering off-site support, and then carry out the stage 2 audit and provide certification with UCAS.
Our record time for ISO certification was within 2 weeks!
When we first visit the client we will hold a management interview to identify their aspirations, needs, ethics, where they think the company is going, and to get a knowledge of current procedures.
Looking at procedures as an external third party, means that we always ask the “stupid” questions that might have obvious answers. The response is either “Well no we can’t because…”, or “Oh we hadn’t thought of that!” which can offer new ideas as to efficient business management processes.
We have dealt with big and small businesses, most of our clients have up to 50 employees. We like to get to know employees and while we are there we try to be a part of their business, and behave as a reflection of that.
What interests you about becoming a mentor?
It really is a follow on from my passion for ISO improving people’s businesses and making things easier and more productive.
From the Jomo247 mentor programme, I am hoping to get people phoning or emailing me and asking me what they are going to get from having ISO certification.
The most common thing I hear is: “I’ve got a couple of things to do and then I’m gonna do the ISO”. Gaining an ISO certification is always the third thing on the list. I want to contact people and convince them of what I know, which is that everything about this will make your business better and it won’t take months, it will take weeks.
What do you think the next big thing will be in quality?
My guess is that the next phase will be a move further away from the minutiae of production processes, and towards a much more holistic business management system that is tailored towards where the directors want the business to go, or how they want it to develop.