Presentation on theme: "Lessons from ISO14001 Accreditation. What is ISO14001? ISO 14000 is a family of standards related to environmental management that aims to help organizations,"— Presentation transcript:
Lessons from ISO14001 Accreditation
What is ISO14001? ISO is a family of standards related to environmental management that aims to help organizations, a) minimize how their operations (processes, etc.) negatively affect the environment (i.e., cause adverse changes to air, water, or land); b) comply with applicable laws, regulations, and other environmentally oriented requirements, and (c) continually improve in the above. ISO14000 is similar to ISO 9001 quality management in that both pertain to the process of how a product is produced, rather than to the product itself. For the University of Bristol it focuses has been on operations.
Why use ISO for ESD? We didn’t do ISO to do ESD! We were doing ISO before we really got going on ESD. ISO looks at your processes around ESD, not at ESD itself. Its not about the content, its not the ‘how’ of ESD. Absence of any ESD systems/certification nationally. Decided to have all sustainability activity in one place – therefore ISO.
What has worked? The most helpful thing we have found is in relation to the proper tracking of our documents, correspondence and engagement. With the structure we have created for ISO auditing, we have ended up creating a fantastically accurate log system of all our interactions. This helps demonstrate impact within and outside of the institution. ISO is a reflective tool that forces us to look at what we set out to do, how we went about it and it we achieved our goals. Sometimes, ISO helps us see that we achieved things along the way that we might not have intended. These incidental/accidental outcomes are part of the organic process of responsive ESD engagement. It has helped to define a management structure. Codify our process of review.
What has worked? The creation of procedures and clear filing systems ensures that the team works within the same structure, whereby everybody can find what they need when they need it, rather than separate folder systems. The procedures ensure longevity and easy handover in the case of staffing changes. The formal structures also make other audits, such as reviews for the P&P league table much easier. All of these things can happen outside of an ISO process. ISO, while difficult and time consuming at first, is a useful tool to help the team plan and track our efforts effectively. Once the system is set up, it is not too hard to maintain. Yes, we would recommend it to others.
What hasn’t worked ISO doesn't really help with the content, but helps us ensure that we are clear about our content and supporting processes. Some parts of ISO are not applicable, for examples environmental complaints. ISO is not designed for ESD, more about compliance, but has many elements that are relevant. ISO is changing with more focus on outcomes rather than just the process, so it will become more applicable to ESD. Would it be good to have a certification system for ESD?