Earlier this year, Marten Machining reached a company milestone by earning certification in ISO 9001:2008 and ISO 13485. To begin with, this achievement is issued from the International Organization for Standardization, which is the world-renowned source for quality and environmental management standards. The organization is the leading network of international quality standards from 163 countries working in partnership with international organizations, governments, industry, businesses and consumer representatives. The International Standards Organization is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland.
The ISO 9001:2008 recognition is of significant note for Marten Machining as it places Marten’s manufacturing processes and commitment to enterprise-wide quality at the very top of the high precision tooling marketplace. Dave Marten, Vice President of the company, said, “ Earning ISO 9001:2008 certification is meaningful for both our customers and our company. For our customers, it highlights our commitment to quality processes, and shows them that we are committed to the highest organization-wide standards in business. Internally, the certification is important because it demonstrates that our company and our team can work together with the common goal of providing better processes for communication, documentation and quality, and in the end, that means a better customer experience for everyone.”
The additional ISO 13485 certification demonstrates that Marten Machining has met the standards for regulatory requirements of quality management systems for medical devices and related types of services. It demonstrates Marten’s ability to consistently meet customer requirements, as well as regulatory requirements, for applicable medical devices.
During the last few years, Marten Machining started the ISO 9001:2008 certification process, which is both comprehensive and intensive. Achieving the certification designation is particularly challenging for smaller manufacturing companies, particularly those like Marten Machining, who are rapidly growing and need to focus their time, efforts and resources on fulfilling customer orders. Carving-out time, and quite a lot of it, to meet the rigorous qualifications of the International Standards Organization, is both time consuming and difficult, but Marten Machining stayed-the-course and achieved their goal in January, 2014.
Part of the impetus for achieving the certification was Marten’s customers who had suggested the company pursue ISO 9001:2008. As Marten grew larger, they needed to improve their documentation processes, particularly as the companies’ reputation grew as the “go to resource” for complex and difficult machining projects. As Marten stated, “Our ISO 9001:2008 certification adds value to our customer offerings because we have this laser-like focus on communication, documentation and follow-up. We’re able to collect data and turn that information into solutions that benefit our customers and their customers. We can look back on prior efforts, consult our extensive archive of data, and see how we can improve and add greater value. And truth be told, this helps us internally, too. When you have teams of highly skilled people working on a singular product, they need to have the processes in place to support their decisions.”
Everyone at Marten Machining is involved in the ISO 9001:2008 process. As business continues to grow, Marten added personnel in the quality department, is constantly inspecting parts in exacting detail, teams meet regularly to improve the quality system, they review performance, and take the time to discuss their commitment to innovation, ingenuity and invention. It’s a genuine, hands-on approach to problem solving that occurs directly on the factory floor.
As Marten concluded, “I have found that the ISO 9001:2008 process really distills not just manufacturing but also business objectives. Certainly, it has taught us how to better discipline ourselves and be better communicators, but it has also taught us how to think in terms of adding simplicity and value. As we all know, that’s easier said than done because there’s nothing more complex than the simple. Earning this certification is really one of those instances where everyone wins. There’s no question our customers will be on the receiving end of a more complete approach to a better outcome and better deliverables, no matter how complex the project is. And we win, of course, because we get to see the satisfaction in our customers that we work so diligently to achieve.