On October 26, 2015 SGS has certified a Finnish Valtavalo Oy according to the quality management standard ISO 9001 and the environmental management system standard ISO 14001 revised in 2015. According to the received information, Valtavalo is the first company in Finland to receive the new sertificates. A quality and environmental management system has been created for Valtavalo since last spring. Oulu Business Networks (OBN), a company based in Oulu which specialises in business development, has been involved in the process. SGS Fimko Oy has acted as certification partner.

Quality management systems develop – new 2015 revisions of ISO 9001 and ISO 14000 systems

ISO, the International Organisation for Standardisation, published new revisions of ISO 9001, which sets out the requirements of a quality management system, and ISO 14001, which deals with environmental management systems, in September 2015. The new versions of the standards include many significant improvements. The revised ISO 9001 emphasises clear connection to the organisation’s comprehensive operating environment in planning and using a quality management system. In other words, quality management politics and strategy with its targets must be made a permanent part of the overall business strategy of the organisation. The ISO 14001 standard on environmental management systems puts emphasis on the prominence of environmental management within the organisation’s strategic planning processes. The revised environmental management standard aims to meet the needs of its users in a more comprehensive manner than before. In addition, it takes into account growing environmental challenges and the expectations of society.

For SGS – the party responsible for Valtavalo’s audit and certification – the new revisions have meant that they have to contribute significantly to, for instance, training auditors.

In addition, we make sure that the adoption of the 2015 revisions goes smoothly by always arranging a sparring partner for the main auditor”, explains Harri Kaartinen, SGS Fimko Oy’s SSC manager, who participated in the audit process. “The audit of Valtavalo went very well from our point of view, thanks to enlightened partners.”

It has been an interesting journey to develop an operating system that fulfils the requirements of the new standard revisions together with Valtavalo’s staff”, tells Pekka Kantola, the CEO of OBN. “We could not have succeeded without our management being strongly committed to the project.”

Persistent work for quality and environment

At Valtavalo, quality and environmental issues have been the cornerstones of business since the start of the company. Hence, the adoption of new quality and environmental management systems has been a natural step. For years, the company has acted as a pioneer and an example for other players in the field by making environmentally sustainable choices based on the values of the company. For instance, Valtavalo has used environmentally friendly manufacturing methods and recyclable materials in products and packaging. The focus of product development is on quality. Valtavalo has developed high-quality, energy-saving LED tubes, the lifetime of which is one of the longest on the market. Also the revised ISO 14001 emphasises considering development from a product lifecycle perspective.

We have invested in quality development throughout the history of the company, and it has proven to be useful in concrete ways. That is why we now want to be at the forefront when adopting the new 2015 revisions. Our customers and partners value the work we do for quality, and it is also easier to seek international business opportunities this way”, says Valtavalo’s CEO Markku Laatikainen.