External auditors have praised a wide range of our business activities – including our significant investment schemes, Low-Carbon Roadmap and employees – after a rigorous assessment against a prestigious quality mark.
And the good news is that after 29 days of external assessment by LRQA, we’ve been successfully recertified to International Standard ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management Systems, which also covers Construction Products Regulations and National Highways Sector Scheme 3B.
Paul Smith, British Steel's Business QA & Standards Manager, said: “The ISO 9001:2015 standard is the best-practice quality management framework. It’s an important standard to achieve as it provides independent evidence of our ongoing commitment to provide a high level of service to both customers and suppliers.”
To satisfy the strict audit requirements, we demonstrated an effective quality management system that’s compliant with all sections of the standard. The team of 5 LRQA auditors covered our sites in Scunthorpe, Teesside, Skinningrove, Darlington, Rotherham, Immingham and Lisburn and looked in depth at the processes and systems used in our wide-ranging operations. They covered all operational and functional disciplines including ironmaking, steelmaking, mills and our support functions too. And having been reaccredited, British Steel now moves on to LRQA’s normal surveillance programme, which comprises 12-monthly surveillance visits, with the full audit repeated in 3 years’ time.
Stephen Barlow, LRQA’s Lead Assessor, was very pleased with how the audit process had gone and said he’d seen a lot of positive things. He attributed a large part of the smooth running of the audit to the attitude, cooperation and enthusiasm of all involved. Of particular note were our Low-Carbon Roadmap and associated plans to reduce our carbon intensity, our Capex investments such as Scunthorpe’s new billet caster, the 3 unloaders at Immingham and the new Mast Service Centre at Skinningrove, and our engineering transformation project with around 250 engineers completing the training and development programme.
Paul added: “This is a great result with positive feedback received from all of the LRQA auditors from across the business. Their assessment reinforces the findings from our own internal audits – and that is that the maturity of our management systems continues to improve and we have the necessary controls in place to produce what our customers want.
“The audit has been a huge undertaking for the company and many people across the organisation have contributed to this successful outcome – thank you to everyone who’s helped, the result is a great credit to you.”