Defining interested parties per AS9100 – ISO 9001

With the latest revision of ISO 9001 in 2015 and AS9100 in 2018, there have been strong emphasis to understand and define the context of the organization in the Quality Management System (QMS) which encompass interested parties as well as internal & external issues and scope of the QMS.

This article will support you populate the interested parties of your QMS and the way to record these information, the priority order and actions taken to address their expectations.

First of all, interested parties are mentioned in the section 4.2 of the AS9100 which specify that the organization shall document a list of interested parties, a brief description and their needs/expectations.

While the standard does not recommend a specific format, in most organizations this information is reflected in the quality manual or as a documented appendix. I would recommend to make it an appendix to ease future reviews and avoid a heavy signature loop if it is part of the quality manual.

How to POPULATE interested parties ?

Stepping back slightly, the definition of quality is « the ability for a service or product to satisfy customer expectations« . The idea behind defining interested parties is to understand who are those customers from a broader perspective.

The below picture illustrates where the AS9100:Rev D or ISO9001:2015 standards try to guide us : brainstorm about these stakeholders and go beyond the most common stakeholders.

interested parties AS9100 ISO9001

As you may appreciate, the first interested parties that come to mind are :

    • Customers
    • Shareholders
    • Employees
    • Legal & governmental agencies

At this stage you can notice that while we speak about the organization’s customers, we may forget customers’ customers or final users which can have additional or different expectations. Please note that for the moment we are just populating the interested parties, we can decide later to group categories : for example the organization can decide to group customers’ customers with customers if both groups share the same expectations/needs.

Then, there is a second level of stakeholders that some organizations would not have considered before the latest revisions of standards. These were purposely hidden in the above illustration to illustrate the purpose of AS & ISO standards. Without being exhaustive, those are :

    • Suppliers
    • Certification Bodies, Auditors
    • Local AS9communities
    • Neighbors
    • NGO
    • Industry Groups / Committees (chamber of commerce, IAQG, SAE, GIFAS, BDLI, …)
    • Universities & Colleges

How to grasp interested parties’ needs ?

Once interested parties are populated, it is straight forward to make a brief description for each of them, to define their needs & expectations, define a priority  (to avoid spending large efforts to satisfy stakeholders that are not strategic for the organization) then the actions taken to meet customers expectations.

I usually recommend to add a « landing point » which is the way the organization monitors the satisfaction of each stakeholder : for example customer satisfaction is monitored through KPI dashboard, voice of customer, etc while the employee satisfaction is monitored through HR KPI such as turn over, etc.

how to record these information ?

As mentioned, these information can be incorporated directly in the quality manual or preferably as a separate appendix (do not forget to have this appendix official in your QMS and the document number reflected as reference in the quality manual). Below are interested parties templates that you can download:

    • Free Template with all columns and one detailed example. This template is complying with AS9100 Rev D and ISO 9001:2015 requirements.
    • Premium Template with a list of most common interested parties and all related details such as needs/expectations, proposals of actions to take, landing point. The template can be further customized to fit your organization QMS. Download premium version on Sellfy.

RELATED POSTS

For further resources related to AS9100 Rev D or ISO9001:2015 implementation, refer to the below posts:

Defining internal and external issues per AS9100 – ISO 9001 (SWOT/PEST)

Defining interested parties per AS9100 – ISO 9001

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