by Ellen Göppl, Translation by Anja Peschel

Quality management with ISO 9001 – added value for translation services

Peschel Communications first obtained its ISO 9001:2015 certification in 2021.

Preparing for the international certification for quality management systems was no easy feat, but it helped us further improve our tried-and-tested internal processes. So we are proud of the result, particularly because not many language service providers of our size are able to boast a certified quality management system.

ISO 9001 – tried and tested

ISO 9001:2015 is the world’s best-known quality management standard for companies and organisations, such as schools or hospitals. Particularly in technical industries, the standard is widely used to qualify suppliers by requiring them to present an ISO 9001 certification. The standard covers more than just the products or services offered: Rather than just looking at the value creation itself, it also covers management and support processes, such as strategic product development, IT security and onboarding.

ISO 9001 in a translation company

The lion’s share of our quality management is dedicated to value creation, which in our case is the creation of translations, or the coordination of a multilingual team of interpreters. For each of our services, a clear process has been identified and documented. If you are looking to have your website translated from German into English, for example, the process starts with a consultation with one of our project managers. This is to identify which version of English (British, American or even “globish”) you require to communicate with your customers, and which keywords may be relevant for your search engine optimisation (SEO). Or maybe what you need is transcreation, a creative marketing translation. Once you have placed your order, your project manager will plan each individual process step, such as file management, translation, revision, DTP, etc. According to ISO 9001, each of these steps must be documented.

Let me give you another example: You would like to have a medical letter translated so that your doctor abroad knows what is going on. Here, our quality management system takes effect long before the medical text is actually translated into another language: Quality management also means that we treat sensitive documents with the utmost confidentiality. Another quality aspect guaranteed under ISO 9001 is that all players along the process chain – from the project manager and translator to the revisor – must have an adequate (academic) qualification for the job. Our QM system also has a set process for the selection of linguists, and this process is regularly reviewed.

Risks and opportunities

The recurring theme of ISO 9001 is risk analysis at every step of the way. So, who needs to be able to read confidential documents, who needs access to business secrets? How can we ensure that we can continue working even if our servers should fail? How do we plan our personnel resources so that we always have sufficient capacities – even during a pandemic? Thoroughly understanding our customers’ needs and putting ourselves in the position to be able to meet them is an intrinsic element of our QM system.

This is what our ISO 9001 certification means for you:

You can rest assured that…

  • we have a functioning quality assurance system
  • we are qualified to help you if your own processes require an ISO 9001-certified supplier
  • quality is the essence of everything we do
  • our project managers will document your particular requirements and make sure that they are met;
  • we will document and take heed of your feedback
  • our business processes are subject to a continuous improvement process
  • we carefully analyse and weigh risks and opportunities.

Do you still have questions? We will be happy to explain in person what our ISO 9001 means for you. Call us or use the contact form on our website.