The Rolawn ISO Management Team (l-r):
Chris Matson, Executive Director; Deborah Wiles, Farm Secretary; Jen Henzell, Office Manager; Emily Kirkland, Head of Customer Services; Ian Elwick, Bulk Products Manager
This article has also been published in Pro Landscaper Magazine.
You may have seen ISO certification for quality and environmental management systems advertised by leading brands, but what difference does it make? At Rolawn, certification is a hugely important part of our organisation, so what does it mean for you?
At a headline level, it means you know exactly what you’ll get when you order from Rolawn, helping keep your customers happy and your business on track.
Certification builds trust for you and your customers
ISO standards are widely recognised as the measure of what good looks like. To attain certification an organisation must provide evidence that they are meeting the stringent standards set by the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO). Compliance is then audited every year to ensure standards are being maintained, processes are being upheld and improvements implemented.
As the market leaders, we have always operated a continual cycle of reviewing and refining products and processes. These measures are there to help reassure you that everything is being done correctly and that the products you purchase are manufactured both responsibly and to the highest quality. The fact that you have chosen a trustworthy supplier will also help to increase your clients’ confidence and trust in your business.
ISO certification for both Quality and Environmental Management Systems is simply a formalisation of many of these processes. It helps to focus our efforts on maintaining the high standards that we have already demonstrated in order to continue developing and improving.
Risks are managed and opportunities identified
Documenting and auditing processes ensures that everyone involved is aware of and working to the correct standards.
Rolawn’s in-house ISO team conducts a programme of internal audits, visiting all relevant areas of the company to check that procedures are being followed accurately. Corrective action is implemented if necessary, with actions recorded in an improvement log. These actions are seen as opportunities for improvement, closing a gap in a process.
In many ways, these audits are central to business continuity. Keeping abreast of the latest legislation and forthcoming legislative changes ensures we are prepared and ready to adapt our practices so as not to interrupt our supply. For instance, understanding where and when Clean Air Zones may be implemented will help us make the appropriate changes to our distribution channels to keep delivery schedules on target.
Feedback plays a key role
One of the core principles measured by ISO 9001:2015 for Quality Management is customer feedback and how it is used to shape a business.
The aim is always to exceed customer expectations which entails listening to and acting on customer feedback. For this reason, one of the main agenda items for our ISO management meetings is customer feedback. Detailed information from Customer Services and independent online feedback from Feefo provide key data on products and services which is monitored and addressed at management and board level.
Feedback can also come from external experts who we liaise with when gaining certification from other organisations, such as the Forest Stewardship Council® and Green Achievers. We engage with their environmental specialists to ensure that we meet their criteria for certification and that we are fully conversant with issues that are currently affecting or may potentially impact customers, and consequently need to be included within our strategic planning.
Protection for all parties
Ultimately, these standards minimise risk and should build consumer confidence. Seeing that products and systems have been independently audited and certified, year after year, demonstrates reliability and trustworthiness. What’s more, setting benchmarks like this can create an uplift in standards, helping to improve the reputation of the industry as a whole.
Jonathan Hill, Rolawn Sales & Marketing Director
After joining Rolawn in 2003 as regional sales manager, Jonathan Hill moved to York three years later to learn more about turf production and the market. Since becoming sales and marketing director in 2011, Jonathan’s focus has been to drive sales revenue by aligning Rolawn products and services with customer needs.