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Why Do You Need To Follow With Iso 50001?

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By Author: Shaun White
Total Articles: 2
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The International Standards Organization is possibly well-known for ISO 9001, which defines Industrial Quality Management standards, and ISO 14001, which is central to Environmental Management Systems. Sure, you can construct a manufacturing facility without following with these standards, but you probably wouldn’t have any customers—they not only are models for best practices, but have become market expectations in industrial markets all over the world.

The way these standards spread across the world follow a very similar pattern: adoption starts in Europe and Asia, where governments create incentives or laws to encourage compliance.  Since many large U.S. corporations have operations in those continents, they have to follow for the plants in those regions…and the seed is planted.  Soon enough, those U.S. corporations seek to increase the benefits of compliance across their enterprise also requiring their suppliers to comply and further influencing the rest of the value chain.

The ISO 50001:2018 which is known as “Energy management systems”, was only revised last year, but is already displaying signs of this same volatile growth pattern.  What isn’t representative in this statistic; however, are the hundreds if not thousands of sites implementing the standard without pursuing certification.

For the cause of this standard, even without the certification status, gives credibility and structure to an Energy Management initiative adopted within an industrial process facility, saving energy cost, reducing downtime, improving energy reliability, and contributing to Sustainability Strategy. Whether obtaining ISO 50001 Certification or not, early adopters of ISO 50001 are well poised to hold a competitive advantage as this standard quickly spreads and sets the bar for process energy efficiency and sustainability strategy worldwide.

Improving Energy Management through ISO 50001

It is worth to remember that ISO 50001 is applicable to any type and size of organisations, irrespective of industry, geography or culture.

Implementation and operation

This section of the ISO 50001 standard has seven main requirements that turn the outputs of the energy planning process into action that is structured, communicated and where relevant documented. It is worth nothing that documentation should be treated with pragmatism – where the standard needs documentation then it must be followed to achieve compliance, but it is unnecessary to create additional records unless they add value to your Energy Management System.

Competence, training and awareness

The ISO 50001 auditor training requirement applies direct employees and subcontractors who collision on significant energy uses, which are identified in the energy plan. Flexibility of training methods is given, but should be appropriate to the role, responsibilities, education, skills and experience of each individual. Whatever method, appropriate records are required by the standard.


Communication is critical to the effectiveness of the Energy Management System, internal and external communication is required. It is expected that internal communication is a two-way process that considers suggestions for improvement of the EnMS.


ISO 50001 does not mean administrate and provides good flexibility for documenting the Energy Management System. The ISO 50001 documents could be paper or electronic records, but also signage, diagrams, flow charts and dashboards that communicate the objectives, actions and achievements of the EnMS.

Operational control

Responding to this requirement will differ significantly from organisation to organisation. The fundamental goal is to make sure that energy policy, targets and action plans are implemented within operational and maintenance activities.


Ideally energy efficiency should be designed into the Energy Management System to maximise its performance from the point of implementation. This requirement defines that the results of design activities are recorded.

Procurement impact of energy services, products, equipment and energy

Procurement has an important impact cost, resource and efficiency. It is specifically addressed and procurement processes must be established, documented, evaluated and communicated. Life cycle analysis should be considered in evaluation.

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