The number of ISO 9000 certificates grew by nearly 40 % in 1997 and ISO 14000 certificates more than tripled, demonstrating the impact of ISO's management system standards on business activities worldwide.

These are among the findings revealed by the recently published seventh cycle of The ISO Survey, which updates the ISO 9000 and ISO 14000 certification picture to the end of 1997.

The survey shows that ten years after the ISO 9000 quality management system standards were first published, their use is still increasing. Up to the end of 1997, at least 226 349 ISO 9000 certificates had been awarded in 129 countries. This was an increase of 63 645 (+ 39,1 %) over the end of 1996 when the total was 162 704 in 116 countries.

The ISO 14000 environmental management system standards were published only in 1996, but The Survey shows that they are rapidly being implemented. Up to the end of 1997, at least 5 017 certificates had been awarded in 55 countries, an increase of 3 526 (more than three times as many) over the end of 1996 when the total was 1 491 in 45 countries.

"The results of this new survey are impressive and indicate the extent to which organizations around the world are seeing added value in implementing ISO 9000 and ISO 14000 in their business operations, "ISO Secretary-General, Dr. Lawrence D. Eicher, commented.

"Tens of thousands of organizations are operating management systems based on ISO 9000 to ensure mastery of their processes affecting the quality of their products and services. Now, the rapid take-up of ISO 14000 suggests that this new family of standards is similarly helpful to organizations in implementing environmental management systems which allow them to combine business efficiency with care of the environment."

The survey includes the regional share of ISO 9000 and ISO 14000 certificates expressed as percentages, as well as country-by-country breakdowns of the number of certificates, and also indicates for some countries how many certificates have been withdrawn. ISO contacted some 130 organizations, primarily accreditation and certification bodies, to collect the figures.

The ISO Survey of ISO 9000 and ISO 14000 Certificates: Seventh cycle - 1997 (ISBN 92-67-10284-2) is available (single copies free) from ISO and its national members, and is posted on ISO's Internet site, ISO Online: www.iso.org