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MARINA CERTIFICATION taken by the auditors and reduce the bill. If a colleague has done the same certification and shares the chapters and specifications of the process, you can use this as a template. Look around for pre-audit prices; differences can be huge. The size of the auditing company has little to do with the efficiency or quality of delivered work, especially for small operations (even if we talk about several marinas under one company umbrella). Risks: with ISO, you are your worst enemy. ISO 9001 (management) and 14001 (environmental control) are not static standards, but ones that demand ongoing improvements. Do not hurry, take it step by step. Goals: through the pre-audit, when the goals are established (digitalise information, improve web traffic, use less paper), do not get carried away by wishful thinking and establish goals that cannot be achieved. Goals do not need to imply huge changes, just traceable ones. Nothing is worse for morale than a non-achieved goal. Take it easy and step-by-step and reach your goals on time. Do not become an ISO freak: more ISO signs are only worthwhile if they are absolutely necessary. When satisfied with the first steps through ISO compliance and certification, keep your eyes open for other standards that might help, and decide if following compliance would be enough. ISO standards sometimes supersede each other (9001 and 14001 have many parts in common). More is not necessarily better: the same rule applies for non-ISO standards, like Gold Anchors, Blue Stars, RINA and regional and national tourism standards. To be certified Gold Anchor UK, Gold Anchor Australia (now merging), IMCI Blue Star, Ports Propres and ISO 14001, for example, at the same time just points to a big marketing budget. It doesn’t mean you are better. Management and environmental certifications are about quality, not quantity. One final short comment about ISO internationally recognised signs contribute to people’s safety. ISO 13687:2014. At the outset of the standard, it was decided to establish a minimum requirement that third world countries could use as a basic template for marina design and operation. It was created under the Tourism Committee (TC228) ‘Tourism and Related Services’ to focus on the services tourists find when they arrive at an ISO 13687 certified marina. For example, a family wants to charter a boat in Indonesia. They see that in a certain area there are some ISO 13687 certified marinas so they know that in those marinas they will find a clean bathroom, fire fighting elements, an office and a board with local information, facilities to dispose of rubbish and means to make an emergency call if needed. There is a very easy way not to hate ISO: understand it better. Oscar Siches CMM is a marina consultant and partner/manager of two marinas in Mallorca. He can be contacted on email: 42 - July/August 2015

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