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Midsized manufacturers are familiar with ISO 9000, but few will register soon.

International Organization standardization (ISO) 9000 quality standards became mandatory for all companies that manufacture in or export products to the European Community after December 31, 1992.

As more companies seek to comply with ISO standards, CPAs in commerce and industry will be asked to adapt and maintain the standards for their companies. CPA firms also may play a role in registering clients or certifying their compliance with ISO standards.

In July, a survey of 254 midsized American manufacturers with annual sales of $10 million to $500 million found that 69% of the respondents were familiar with ISO 9000 standards. In a similar survey conducted in May of last year, only 52% were aware of the standards.

However, only 71% of those familiar with the standards said ISO 9000 would affect their companies and only 52% intended to certify their manufacturing facilities. Only 20% of those who intended to certify their facilities planned to do so by the end of this year. Another 57% planned to become certified by the end of 1994.

Martin L. Clemens, manager of international taxes for DowElanco, Indianapolis, had an explanation for the apparent lack of urgency in meeting ISO standards. "Many companies already meet or exceed ISO 9000 quality standards even if they are not officially certified," he said. The survey results tended to bear him out. Of the respondents who said ISO quality standards would not affect their companies at all, 36% said their own standards were already beyond those set by ISO 9000.
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Title Annotation:International Organization of Standardization
Publication:Journal of Accountancy
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Oct 1, 1993
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