QUALITY IN THE RAIL SECTOR
As a rail organization, you have three core concerns: qualifying your project and series management, maintaining stable company processes, and constantly improving your products and services.
The international ISO/TS 22163 rail standard provides the guidance you need to successfully approach those issues – whether you’re a railway operator, rail vehicle manufacturer or component supplier.
ISO/TS 22163, ISO's Technical Specification for rail organizations published in May 2017, marks the next evolution of the IRIS standard (International Railway Industry Standard). It contains the requirements set out in ISO 9001:2015, including the high-level structure used in all ISO management system standards since 2013, but also incorporates needs and requirements that are unique to the rail industry. Audit results are still reviewed in the IRIS Audit Tool. The result status is entered in the UNIFE database, where it can be accessed by industry developers, engineers and purchasers.
To achieve ISO/TS 22163 certification, you will have to complete the classic DQS audit process. In Stage 1, we analyze and review your documentation to determine whether your management system is ready for certification (system analysis). During the system audit (Stage 2), we comprehensively audit your management system to verify its compliance. The resulting certificate demonstrates full compliance. Certification is followed by annual surveillance audits. A recertification audit is conducted after three years. Our auditors view people, processes and results as parts of an integral approach and identify opportunities and untapped potential in the audit. Your audit result is published in the UNIFE database along with the identified maturity level.
Rules for transitioning from IRIS Rev. 02 to the new standard have been in effect since the publication of ISO/TS 22163 in May 2017. The standard’s old version could only be used for initial certifications until the end of 2017. System audits for transitioning to ISO/TS 22163, by contrast, should be completed by early June 2018. This leaves a 90-day window to correct any nonconformities before the old certificates expire on September 14, 2018. The transition can technically take place at any time, but with the risk of an uncertified period. We therefore recommend transitioning to the new standard early on as part of the previous audit cycle. It may be possible to reduce the certification costs in certain circumstances.