Completing Your Project Plan

A. Determine the project goals
In order to start planning, you will need to determine what your goals are for the project. Answer these questions:
  • When will you start your project?
    Consider the start of your project as the date of the Gap Analysis. When will you be ready to conduct the Gap Analysis?
    Recommended steps to be completed before conducting the Gap Analysis:
    1. Identify one or more people to conduct the Gap Analysis; it is helpful if they have some quality system experience or audit experience. You may also want to consider having assistance from a consultant.
    2. The auditor is the person conducting the gap analysis. It may be an audit team or one individual
  • When does your company want to have an ISO 9001:2000 certificate in hand?
    The answer to this question will determine your timeline.
    The shorter time frame allowed for the project, the more resources the project will demand during implementation.
    It is important to know what your goal is because other dates will be determined by this information.
    Find out if there are company goals, are there clients that are requesting certification or other circumstances that will determine the date?
    Your date may be revised later. You will use this as a target date, and as we move along to the gap analysis and creating the task list you will be able to determine if the date is realistic. It will depend on what you currently have in place for your quality system, and how many resources you have available for the project.

    B. Identify Project Responsibilities

    It is important to determine who will be leading this project. Are you the person leading the charge? If so, you would be the project manager. You do not need to identify the management representative at this point. You will need to clarify who makes up "Top Management". The standard has requirements to be fulfilled by Top Management, and the sooner they are involved in this project the better.

    Who is your project manager?
    Who makes up Top Management at your organization?
    Who should be on the ISO 9001 Steering Team? This team will play an important role in planning, coordinating and providing resources for the ISO 9001:2000 project.
    What is the ISO 9001 Steering Team?

    C. Begin to fill in the Project Timeline

    When will you conduct your Gap Analysis and how long will it take to complete?
    A Gap Analysis can typically take anywhere from 2 days to 5 days to perform. It will depend on the size of your organization, the number of auditors, the state of your current quality system and the experience of your auditors.
    Planning Meetings to assign Task Teams.
    This will take one or two meetings. The project manager and top management should be involved.
    What are task Teams?

    Target a date for Introductory training for all employees.
    You will want your employees to be aware of the project, what will need to be done, who will be involved, and why you are implementing ISO 9001:2000. Choose a date that is after the planning meeting discussed above. That way you can decide if some people that will be involved in the project need more detailed training, and you can let employees know who will be working on the project.