The ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management System Standard: Companies' Drivers, Benefits and Barriers to Its Implementation

Laura Bravi, Federica Murmura, Gilberto Santos


Purpose: The aim of this study is to evaluate companies' perception of the latest version (2015) of ISO 9001 in terms of motivations that pushed companies to the implementation of a Quality Management System.

Methodology: The research was conducted through a questionnaire proposed to 3,975 ISO 9001 certified companies, making a simple random sampling among the 150,143 Italian companies certified in 2018. Among the companies contacted, 493 participated in the survey and gave shape to the reference sample.

Findings: The results of the study show that the “culture of quality” is rooted in Italy and mainly in the North, which represents the most economically advanced area. With regard to the evolution of the standard from ISO 9001:2008 to 2015, companies seem to have perceived the main changes introduced with the latest revision, that helps to easily adopt its principles in companies.

Research Limitation: The main limitation of the study lies in the fact that the focus of the research was based on Italian companies. It would be important for future research to consider also other European countries, and make a comparison between them, in order to consider if companies of different markets have different motivations for implementing the standard and perceive different benefits and barriers to its implementation.

Value of paper: Few researches have focused on the latest version of the ISO 9001 standard; therefore this study gives a broad vision of how companies that have had to deal with the new standard consider it in relation to the previous version, highlighting the main strengths and weaknesses.


Araújo, R., Santos, G., Costa, J. and Sá, J.C., 2019. The Quality Management System as a Driver of Organizational Culture: An Empirical Study in the Portuguese Textile Industry. Quality Innovation Prosperity Journal, [e-journal] 23(1), pp.1-24.

Armstrong, J.S. and Overton, T.S., 1977. Estimating nonresponse bias in mail surveys. Journal of Marketing Research, 14(3), pp.396-402.

Barbosa, L., Oliveira, O. and Santos, G., 2018. Proposition for the alignment of the integrated management systems (quality, environmental and safety) with the business strategy. International Journal for Quality Research, [e-journal] 12(4), pp.925-940.

Batista, I. and Santos, G., 2015. O Impacto Financeiro das Auditorias da Qualidade nas Empresas Portuguesas. Revista Produção e Desenvolvimento, 1(3), pp.90-102.

Boiral, O., 2011. Managing with ISO systems: lessons from practice. Long Range Planning, [e-journal] 44(3), pp.197-220.

Boys, K., Karapetrovic, S. and Wilcock, A., 2004. Is ISO 9004 a path to business excellence? Opinion of Canadian standards experts. International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, [e-journal] 21(8), pp.841-860.

Bravi, L., Murmura, F. and Santos, G., 2017. Attitudes and Behaviours of Italian 3D Prosumer in the Era of Additive Manufacturing. Procédia Manufacturing, [e-journal] 13, pp.980-986.

Bravi, L., Murmura, F. and Santos, G., 2018. Manufacturing Labs: where digital technologies help improve life quality. International Journal for Quality Research, 12(4), pp.957-974.

Bravi, L., Santos, G. and Murmura, F., 2018. Fabrication laboratories: The development of new business models with new digital technologies. Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, [e-journal] 29(8), pp.1332-1357.

Caridade, R., Pereira, T., Ferreira, L.P. and Silva, F.J.G., 2017. Analyses and optimisation of a logistic warehouse in the automotive industry. Procedia Manufacturing 13, pp.1096-1103.

Carvalho, F., Santos, G. and Gonçalves, J., 2018. The disclosure of information on Sustainable Development on the corporate website of the certified Portuguese organizations. International Journal of Quality Research, [e-journal] 12(1), pp.253-276.

Doiro, M., Fernández, J.F., Félix, M.J. and Santos, G., 2017. ERP - machining centre integration: a modular kitchen production case study. Procédia Manufacturing, 13, pp.1159-1166.

Douglas, A., Coleman, S. and Oddy, R., 2003. The case for ISO 9000. The TQM magazine, [e-journal] 15(5), pp.316-324.

Félix, M.J., Santos, G., Barroso, A. and Silva, P., 2018. The transformation of wasted space in urban vertical gardens with the contribution of design to improving the quality of life. International Journal for Quality Research,
[e-journal] 12(4), pp.803-822.

Feng, M., Terziovski, M. and Samson, D., 2008. Relationship of ISO 9001:2000 quality system certification with operational and business performance. Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, 19(1), pp.22-37.

Ferreira, N., Santos, G. and Silva, R., 2019. Risk level reduction in construction sites: Towards a computer aided methodology – A case study. Applied Computing and Informatics, [e-journal] 15(2), pp.136-143.

Fonseca, L.M. and Domingues, J.P., 2018. Empirical Research of the ISO 9001:2015 Transition Process in Portugal: Motivations, Benefits, and Success Factors. Quality Innovation Prosperity Journal, [e-journal] 22(2), pp.16-46.

Gigante, N. and Ziantoni, S. 2015. L’edizione 2015 della norma ISO 9001, 2015. [pdf] Accredia – L’ente Unico. Available at: < > [Accessed 16 April 2019].

Heras-Saizarbitoria, I., 2011. Internalization of ISO 9000: an exploratory study. Industrial Management & Data Systems, [e-journal] 111(8), pp.1214-1237.

Ilkay, M.S. and Aslan, E., 2012. The effect of the ISO 9001 quality management system on the performance of SMEs. International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, [e-journal] 29(7), pp.753-778.

Jones, R., Arndt, G. and Kustin, R., 1997. ISO 9000 among Australian companies: impact of time and reasons for seeking certification on perceptions of benefits received. International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, [e-journal] 14(7), pp.650-660.

Magd, H.A. and Curry, A., 2003. An empirical analysis of management attitudes towards ISO 9001: 2000 in Egypt. The TQM Magazine, [e-journal] 15(6), pp.381-390.

Magd, H.A., 2008. ISO 9001:2000 in the Egyptian manufacturing sector: perceptions and perspectives. International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, [e-journal] 25(2), pp.173-200.

Marques, C., Lopes, N., Santos, G., Delgado, I. and Delgado, P., 2018. Improving operator evaluation skills for defect classification using training strategy supported by attribute agreement analysis. Measurement, 119, pp.129-141.

Murmura, F., and Bravi, L., 2017. Empirical evidences about ISO 9001 and ISO 9004 in Italian companies. The TQM Journal, [e-journal] 29(5), pp.650-665.

Poksinska, B., Eklund, J.A. and Dahlgaard, J., 2006. ISO 9001:2000 in small organisations: Lost opportunities, benefits and influencing factors. International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, [e-journal] 23(5), pp.490-512.

Prates, G.A. and Caraschi, J.C., 2014. Organizational impacts due to ISO 9001 certified implementation on Brazilians Cardboard Companies. International Journal of Academic Research in Business and Social Sciences, 4(5), pp.500-513.

Psomas, E.L. and Pantouvakis, A., 2015. ISO 9001 overall performance dimensions: an exploratory study. The TQM Journal, [e-journal] 27(5), pp.519-531.

Psomas, E.L., Pantouvakis, A. and Kafetzopoulos, D.P., 2013. The impact of ISO 9001 effectiveness on the performance of service companies. Managing Service Quality: An International Journal, [e-journal] 23(2), pp.149-164.

Rebelo, M., Santos, G. and Silva, R., 2015. Integration of Standardized Management Systems: A Dilemma?. Systems, [e-journal] 3(2), pp.45-59.

Rebelo, M., Santos, G. and Silva, R., 2017. The integration of standardized Management Systems: managing Business Risk. International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, 34(3), pp.395-405.

Rebelo, M., Silva, R., Santos, G. and Mendes, P., 2016. Model Based Integration of Management Systems (MSs) - Case Study. TQM Journal, [e-journal] 28(6), pp.907- 932.

Ribeiro, F., Santos, G., Rebelo, M. and Silva, R., 2017. Integrated Management Systems: trends for Portugal in the 2025 horizon. Procédia Manufacturing, 13, pp.1191-1198.

Ribière, V.M. and Khorramshahgol, R., 2004. Integrating total quality management and knowledge management. Journal of Management Systems, 16(1), pp.39-54.

Rosa, C., Silva, F.J.G. and Ferreira, L.P., 2017. Improving the quality and productivity of steel wire-rope assembly lines for the automotive industry. Procedia Manufacturing 11, pp.1035-1042.

Santos, D., Rebelo, M. and Santos, G., 2017. The Integration of certified Management Systems. Case Study – Organizations located at the district of Braga, Portugal. Procédia Manufacturing, [e-journal] 13, pp.964-971.

Santos, G., Afonseca, J., Murmura, F., Félix, M.J. and Lopes, N., 2018. Critical success factors in the management of ideas as an essential component of innovation and business excellence. International Journal of Quality and Service Sciences, 3(3), pp.214-232.

Santos, G. and Barbosa, J., 2006. QUALIFOUND - a modular tool developed for Quality Improvement in Foundries. Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, [e-journal] 17(3), pp.351-362.

Santos, G., Bravi, L. and Murmura, F., 2018. SA 8000 as a Tool for a Sustainable Development Strategy. The Corporate Social Responsibility and Environmental Management Journal, 25, pp.95-105.

Santos, G., Doiro, M., Mandado, E. and Silva, R., 2019. Engineering learning objectives and computer assisted tools. European Journal of Engineering Education. In press,

Santos, G., Mendes, F. and Barbosa, J., 2011. Certification and integration of management systems: the experience of Portuguese small and medium enterprises. Journal of Cleaner Production, 19(2011), pp.1965-1974.

Santos, G. and Milán, A.L., 2013. Motivation and benefits of implementation and certification according ISO 9001 – The Portuguese experience. International Journal for Quality Research, 7(1), pp.71-86.

Santos. G., Murmura, F. and Bravi, L., 2019. Developing a model of vendor rating to manage quality in the supply chain. International Journal of Quality and Service Sciences, 11(1), pp.34-52.

Santos, G., Pais, M.S., Pereira, A.L., Machado, V.C., 1996. Impact of quality certification in SMEs. Proceedings of 40th EOQ(European Organization Quality) Congress, Vol.1 Berlim, Sept.10, pp. 131-140.

Santos, G., Rebelo, M., Lopes, N., Alves, M.R. and Silva, R., 2016. Implementing and certifying ISO 14001 in Portugal: motives, difficulties and benefits after ISO 9001 certification. Total Quality Management & Business Excellence, 27(11-12), pp.1211-1223.

Tarí, J.J., Heras-Saizarbitoria, I. and Pereira J., 2013. Internalization of quality management in service organizations. Managing Service Quality, [e-journal] 23(6), pp.456-473.

Torre, P., Adenso-Diaz, B. and González, B., 2001. Empirical evidence about managerial issues of ISO certification. The TQM Magazine, [e-journal] 13(5), pp.355-360.

Tsiouras, I., 2015. La progettazione del sistema di gestione per la qualità nelle organizzazioni ad alta intensità informativa. Dalla ISO 9000 alla modellizzazione del business. Milano: FrancoAngeli.

Van der Wiele, T., Iwaarden, J., Williams, R. and Dale, B., 2005. Perceptions about the ISO 9000:2000 quality system standard revision and its value: the Dutch experience. International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, [e-journal] 22(2), pp.101-119.

Wilcock, A., Karapetrovic, S., Boys, K. and Piche, P., 2006. Use of ISO 9004:2000 and other business excellence tools in Canada. International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, [e-journal] 23(7), pp.828-846.

Zgodavova, K., Hudec, O. and Palfy, P., 2017. Culture of quality: insight into foreign organisations in Slovakia. Total Quality Management & Business Excellence, [e-journal] 28(9-10), pp.1054-1075.

Zgodavová, K., Linczényi, A., Nováková, R. and Slimák, I., 2002. Profesionál kvality. Košice: TU Košice.


Laura Bravi
Federica Murmura
Gilberto Santos (Primary Contact)
Bravi, L., Murmura, F., & Santos, G. (2019). The ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management System Standard: Companies’ Drivers, Benefits and Barriers to Its Implementation. Quality Innovation Prosperity, 23(2), 64–82.

Article Details

Effective TQM Implementation in the Service Industry: A Proposed Framework

Hesham Magd, Saurav Negi, Mohammad Sultan Ahmad Ansari
Abstract View : 333
Download :131

The Reasons for Decertification of ISO 9001: Financial Aspects

Piotr Kafel, Alexandra Simon
Abstract View : 1329
Download :1119