Strategies used by small-and-medium-sized service organizations to humanize the implementation of ISO 9001/9002
This research explored the implementation of ISO 9001/9002, with particular emphasis on the strategies used to make it a "people friendly" experience. The sample consisted of five small-to-medium enterprises in Southwestern Ontario, each of which provided a service function. The ISO 9001/9002 Management Representative in each company was interviewed and focus groups/interviews were conducted with three front line workers from each company. Trends identified from the transcripts resulting from the interviews/focus groups with management and front line workers were compared. The motivation for gaining registration seemed to correlate with the strategies for ensuring employee acceptance of the ISO 9001/9002 program. Those companies that implemented the standards as quickly as possible because of potential increased market share or customer demand did not achieve employee "buy-in" and did not use a particularly people friendly approach. Companies that effectively managed this organizational change communicated their intentions to employees, included them in the process, provided intensive training on ISO 9001/9002, and, as a result successfully implemented the program with ongoing improvements. This research should be conducted on a larger scale to confirm these trends.