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Integrating Risk Based Thinking with Plan-Do-Check-Act

Duke Okes, Knowledge Architect, APLOMET, Blountville, TN, USA

Keywords: Risk, PDCA cycle, Integration

Industry: All

Level: Intermediate


In many ways the risk based thinking requirements are absolutely nothing new, since the concept of risk management has been built into every edition of the ISO 9001 standard since 1987. However, the intent of the 2015 edition is to make the use of a risk orientation more proactive rather than solely reactive, which has been the focus of many organizations (e.g., through the use of the corrective action process). Understanding the parallels of the Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle, the elements of a quality management system, and the risk management process (such as provided by ISO 31000) make this easy, and these parallels will be shown using a side-by-side comparison. This integration should also be done at both QMS process and QMS system levels, as will be demonstrated by process flowcharts showing this integration. Doing so will not only meet the requirements of the standard, but also better align the QMS with the expectations of senior management as well as other risk related activities carried out within an organization.