Quality Management Consultant: Gordon Bairstow

A Q & A with our New Mentor Applied Quality Systems (UK) Ltd

We are excited to introduce a new quality mentor on support.jomo247.com, Gordon Bairstow.

Gordon works as a quality management consultant and manages Applied Quality Systems. Read on to find out more about Gordon and his work in quality and environmental management systems or visit his profile and contact him here.


How did you get involved as a Quality Management Consultant?

It is an interesting story actually! Including my sandwich course employers, I had worked for  I worked for 7 different companies by the age of 30. The final company I was working for was beyond help. I was taken on as a metallurgist, and there was also a quality manager and a senior production engineer. We were all hired in 1987 and had left 2 years on.

From this experience in a struggling quality department, I thought there must be something I can do to help other businesses in this sort of state. So myself and the quality manager set up our own company, and set out to use our experience to improve other businesses.


What are your specialisms?

There are now 4 people in AQS, and together we implement and support the normal ISO standards including 9001,14001, 45001and 27001. We also provide support for EN 1090 using my metallurgist background, In addition, we  cover all compliance for all products requiring CE  and / or UKCA marking.

We deal with a wide range of companies, from security door manufacturers, to veterinary equipment companies, to wind tunnel model manufacturers. The smallest business we have helped was 2 staff, and the biggest was around 130, but our clients normally have around a 10 to 20, as it is those who don’t have sufficient internal resources.


What is your favourite thing about Quality Management?

I don’t have routine, I see different people everyday and go to different places. Some of my clients I have been with for over 25 years, and it becomes more like a family than work.

I enjoy new experiences with different industries, but mostly they work in the same way – everyone buys something, does something to it, and sells it on.


What does a typical day of work look like for you as a Quality Management Consultant?

Everyday is different, as I’ve said previously, but the thing I most enjoy about my day is seeing my clients. Because of my outgoing personality, I always like to work socially, and build long-term relationships with my customers that we both benefit from.


What interests you about becoming a mentor?

It was mostly curiosity that brought me to this site. I am of an age where I don’t need to work any more, but the other staff are always looking for new work and opportunities.

I have never done mentoring before, and it seemed like an exciting new step to me to be able to share my experiences with new potential clients and peer mentors alike.


What do you think the next big thing will be in Quality?

The new version of ISO came out in 2015, which was 6 years ago now. Standards get reviewed every 7 years or so, there will be a new version in the next couple of years and the challenges that will bring.


How can companies benefit more?

When it comes to certification, a lot of companies just want a certificate on their walls, but the forward looking companies want a wider benefit from the standards.

I believe standards should be used as a management tools for the improvement of their business in order to get the full benefit.

This benefit comes from risk analysis, and using standards as a wider management tool rather than just as a quality tool.

As companies have paid to achieve certification, it makes sense to use it on a day to day basis.

If businesses had ISO 27001 and 22301 in place before the Covid-19 crisis, the focus on business continuity would have meant they already had something in place to prepare them for it, and many wouldn’t have suffered as much as they did.

When businesses apply standards such as ISO 9001, 14001, and 45001 it is not just a certificate on the wall.


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