• Phil Potter

How to Implement an ISO 14001 Environmental Management System in 10 steps.

Is your organisation realising the importance of their environmental impacts and ready to implement ISO 14001 into their management system? This can sometimes cause businesses pain if rushed or not done efficiently. Follow these 10 steps for some insights into how you can implement the ISO 14001 system as smoothly as possible.


1. Commitment

The very first thing you need to do is get commitment and support from senior management. Without this, your ISO 14001 system will not be able to work to its full potential.


2. Engagement

Ensure the whole business is engaged, through using good internal communication. Implementing an environmental management system will be a lot simpler if the whole organisation is on board.


3. Compare

It is important that you compare existing environmental management practices with ISO 14001 requirements. This will ensure there are no clashes with existing practices, and may help reduce costs of implementation.


4. Feedback

Get staff and supplier feedback on current environmental management so that you know what areas have room for improvement and which are already excelling.


5. Team

Establish and select a team that will help with the implementation process. This team should help you get the best results, so think about the skills and competencies that particular employees may have.


6. Map-Out

Create a map that outlines the roles, responsibilities and timescales. This will ensure everyone is on the same page about the implementation, and will verify if the implementation time frame is realistic and achievable.


7. Adapt

Environmental management has basic principles that can be adapted to fit the standards of your organisation.


8. Staff Involvement

Get staff more motivated to be involved using training and incentives. This training involves educating staff members on the importance of having an EMS. Make them feel excited about the implementation so that they view it in a positive light.


9. Internal Auditors

Encourage staff to train as environmental management internal auditors by sharing ISO 14001 knowledge with them.


10. Review

Regularly review your ISO 14001 management system to make sure you are continually improving it.


These steps will be beneficial for businesses of any size (small or large), and if followed correctly, should help the implementation of an ISO 14001 system run smoothly and effectively. Try not to skip to the next step before the prior one has been completed. This may be a timely process for your organisation, but attempting it properly the first time around will save you money, time and resources in the future.


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