Oct 24, 2017

Analyzing Monitoring and Measurement data for your QMS system

Your company should continuously be trying to improve its efficiency and effectiveness. The best way to do this is to use evidence and base your decisions on this. For this to be successful however, your must have enough evidence to properly assess a product or a process and the evidence must be accurate. This means that you have to analyze the data from your QMS system in such a way that it becomes useful and meaningful for those within the company that will use it to make decisions. Deciding on which data should be analyzed is as important as deciding which data should be collected.

Analyzing your Data

Apart from the monitoring and measuring sections in the ISO 9001 standard, there is also mention of the need to analyze appropriate data in order to determine if your quality management system is suitable and effective. You’ll need to do this to determine in which areas of your QMS there are opportunities for continual improvement. Appropriate data that should be analyzed comes from the monitoring and measuring activities within your QMS, but there are other sources of data that should be used as well. The standard mentions four specific areas that are important sources of data that should be analyzed.

Customer Satisfaction

Although customer satisfaction is probably the most critical factor that will determine whether a company is successful or not, it is also one of the most difficult to monitor and measure. Customer satisfaction is not about how you feel you’ve met the customer’s needs and requirements, or how good you think your service to the customer is, but it’s all about how good the customer perceives you to be.

Some ways in which you could monitor customer satisfaction would be by looking at customer returns, comments made by customers online on social media or discussion groups, or in personal interactions with you employees, or feedback as to why specific business deals were lost. Your company’s survival may very well depend on how well you monitor customer satisfaction.

Product conformity

A big part of making sure that your customers are satisfied is to ensure that your products and services conform to the customer’s requirements, and if they don’t, to correct any issues. Most companies focus strongly on this one area to improve customer satisfaction. When you look at your product or service requirements, you need to include any critical issues.

When you look at product requirements, it makes sense to first look at any critical items that your customers have identified. In addition, you have to cater for any legal requirements, as well as internal information within the company as to the requirements necessary to make the product or service work.

Characteristics and trends of corrective action

Using trends that you pick up when handling non conformances and applying appropriate corrective actions to prevent problems before they occur, will convert your company from a reactive one to one that is proactive. While a company is in firefighting mode it is virtually impossible to make improvements, but once you move into a problem prevention mode, improvements tend to become a common occurrence. You could for example identify a trend that operator errors are most often caused by a lack of training, or changed working environments. Once you have identified this trend, it becomes easy to improve the situation and prevent the errors from happening again before they have a negative impact on products, services, or their delivery.

Prevention is always better than cure and this is especially true if you’re dealing with a customer’s perception of how well your company meets their needs. 


Companies are often heavily dependent on the performance of their suppliers in order to be able to meet their own customers’ requirements. One could for example work with suppliers to enable them to improve their delivery times by reducing the complexity of product requirements. This would in turn improve the company’s ability to deliver products to their own customers on time. If you consistently work with your suppliers to improve how they work for you, this will enable you to improve the service delivery you are able to provide to your own customers. This aspect is often overlooked and if it is, will greatly reduce your ability to improve customer satisfaction.

Decisions based on Evidence

When you review data obtained from measuring and monitoring, try to differentiate between data that shows that the process are performing as they should, and the data that needs to be looked at in more detail to identify opportunities for improvement. Using data taken from well-designed monitoring and measurement and deciding which of that data should be looked at in more detail, can result in much better improvement activities. If you don’t spend much time on analyzing data from process that are performing well, but rather focus on and analyze data from processes where improvement might be possible, your overall improvement activities will be so much better. Focusing strongly on improving in the critical places will not only greatly improve your customers’ perception of the company, but also improve your financial bottom line as waste from processes performing poorly will be eliminated.

ISO 9001 quality management systems (QMS) are implemented using MyEasyISO software in Los Angeles (California, USA), while ISO 14001 & OHSAS 18001 Health Safety Management Systems (HSE) are implemented with MyEasyISO in Lisbon (Portugal).

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