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Men and women undecided on ISO 9001 revision

ISO 9001 survey reveals users split on change

Published: 9 Jul 2021

ISO has published a public report on the results of the ISO 9001 User Survey 2020. 


Analysis of the survey responses indicates the below: 

  1. Almost half (42 %) of respondents preferred not to revise ISO 9001 at present versus the option to revise the standard now, supported by 37% of respondents. 
  2. A high number of organisations which responded expressed having no difficulties in conforming with the requirements of ISO 9001, particularly small and medium enterprises (SMEs). 
  3. There is support for new topics to be addressed in future ISO 9001 revisions. 


The survey was conducted by a task group, Task Group 5, created by the committee responsible for ISO 9001, ISO Technical Committee 176, Sub Committee 2 (ISO/TC176/SC2).  

The purpose of the survey was to gather the thoughts of ISO 9001 end users on the current version of the standard and to secure their ideas as to what new material the next edition should contain. 

The majority of those calling for ISO 9001:2015 to be revised proposed a minor revision related to change management, business continuity and the integration of different systems of management. Amendments relating to emerging technologies, people and culture, and ethics and integrity were less prominently cited in users’ responses.  

Comment from the CQI

Alexander Woods, CQI Policy Manager, said: 

“The report on the ISO 9001 user survey reveals that users who participated in the survey continue to value ISO 9001. It also shows that users want to see the standard improved, providing greater clarity on business-critical subjects like change management and business continuity. 

For ISO 9001 to remain relevant and deliver value in a rapidly changing world, TC 176 must continue to consider the effect of digital technologies and changes in workforce, workflow and workplace. 

The CQI will continue to support TC 176 in moving towards a standard which leads and supports best practice in an increasingly digitally enabled world, through engaging its members in the future development of ISO 9001.” 

The ISO 9001 User Survey ran from 29 July 2020 until 31 December 2020, having received 8,397 responses from people and organisations representing a wide variety of sectors across 149 countries. 

A detailed analysis of the results of this survey was provided as an input to ISO/TC176/SC2’s systematic review of ISO 9001:2015. The outcome of this was to leave ISO 9001:2015 unchanged until the next revision cycle, the date and timing of which is yet to be confirmed, as we have reported previously

Access the full report for a summary of the substantive data, graphical analysis, and findings of the survey.