In short, ISO International Standards provide requirements, guidelines or specifications that can be used to ensure that any goods, materials, products, processes or services are fit for their purpose.
ISO Standards ensure that all products and services are safe for use and are reliable and of sound quality. The benefits of ISO International Standards for any business is that they are strategic tools that help to reduce costs, minimise waste, limit errors and increasing productivity. International Standards will also help any company to access new markets in developing countries and facilitate global trade.
ISO stands for The "International Organization for Standardization" who are the world’s largest developer and publisher of voluntary International Standards. Because 'International Organization for Standardization' would have various acronyms in different languages, "IOS" in English, and "OIN" in French (Organisation internationale de normalisation), it was decided to adopt the form "ISO" which is derived from the Greek word "isos" means "equal". This means that even the name "ISO" is in itself an international standard. Whatever the country, whatever the language, the name ISO is always the same.
The ISO aim to make industry more efficient and effective whilst developing a global consensus to help break down barriers for international trade. Founded in 1947, ISO have published International Standards covering almost every aspect of business and technology that impact our daily lives, including food safety, computers, agriculture and healthcare.
ISO's story began in 1946 when, in the aftermath of the second world war, delegates from over 20 countries met at the Institute of Civil Engineers in London and decided to create a new organisation to write and promote the use of industrial standards around the globe. So, in February 1947 the new International Organization for Standardization was officially born. Since beginning operations the ISO have published over 19,000 International Standards from it's base in Geneva, Switzerland, and today has 164 member countries.