Transition Window for ISO 9001 : 2008 and ISO 14001 : 2004 has Closed


A series of origami boats in a line. They are all white except the one at the front which is orange

The International Organisation for Standardisation's (ISO's) allotted transition period for ISO 9001:2008 and ISO 14001 : 2004 has ended today (September 15th 2018). These Standards were withdrawn in 2015, following the publication of ISO 9001 : 2015 and ISO 14001:2015, meaning that Certification bodies will no longer be able to certify new customers to these versions after today.

Companies who are certified to ISO 9001:2008 and/or ISO 14001 : 2004 will have to decide if they will transition/upgrade to the new standard, or continue with their current certification.

What happens if I choose not to upgrade?

If you choose not to upgrade your system to the latest version of the ISO Standards your Management System will still continue to deliver the same benefits and work for your organisation. You will still be operating a Management System that improves your processes and reduces costs.

It is advisable to check whether your current Certification body will be able to support your older system. And if you use a consultancy service to perform your external audits for example, you should confirm that they can still service retired Standards.

Another point to consider, is that companies certified to the 2008 and 2004 versions of these Standards may find their Certifications are no longer accepted by their customers or supply chain partners after the transition period ends. This is particularly pertinent if your organisation competes for tenders, or other contracts requiring ISO certification. In these cases you may find that your applications are not considered without the up-to-date Standard.

Why upgrade?

The 2015 versions of the ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 Standards aim to bring a number of business benefits that the old versions either briefly touched on or did not previously offer:

  • They have more focus on risk-based thinking
  • They follow the same Annex SL structure as other ISO Management System Standards, making system integration much easier
  • They address supply chain management more effectively
  • They put more emphasis on leadership engagement
  • They help address risks/opportunities in a more structured manner within Organisations
  • They use a simpler language, with common structure and terms
  • They have been adapted to be more user-friendly for service and knowledge-based organisations

The upgrade process

Companies who wish to upgrade to the latest version of these Standards will need to:

  1. Identify the areas of their current Management Systems which no longer meet the requirements of the Standards
  2. Update the Management System documentation and/or Manuals
  3. Train team members on the management system changes and any new process
  4. Arrange a compliance audit to confirm that the documented processes conform to the requirements of the new Standard
  5. Gain approval for Certification

Need help?

For those organisations seeking assistance, QMS offer an excellent upgrade service which has been carefully created to simplify the process for many organisations - saving you both time and money.  The Upgrade Service includes training, a full gap analysis, the re-writing of the Manual and access to useful templates - to help you close the gaps and achieve certification faster.

If you would like assistance with upgrading your Management System or if you would like QMS to do this for you, please contact us at or 0333 344 3646.

Originally published on Wednesday, January 10th, 2018 by Michelle J.

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About the author

  • Name:

    Michelle-Louise Janion

  • Company:

    Marketing Executive

  • Bio:

    Michelle worked for QMS from 2017 to 2019, producing engaging content around ISO Standards and other compliance related topics.

Michelle Janion

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