Annual Report 2009 ISO ‘s focus customer ISO in brief ISO makes optimal use of the resources entrusted in it by its stakeholders by only developing standards for which there is a clear market requirement

Annual Report
2009
ISO ‘s
focus
customer

ISO in brief
ISO makes optimal use of the resources entrusted in
it by its stakeholders by only developing standards for
which there is a clear market requirement. This work is
carried out by experts on loan from the industrial, tech-
nical and business sectors which have asked for the
standards, and which subsequently put them to use.
These experts may be joined by others with relevant
knowledge, such as representatives of government
agencies, testing laboratories, consumer associations
and academia, and by international governmental and
nongovernmental organizations.
ISO International Standards represent a global consen-
sus on the state of the art in the technology or good
practice concerned.
*As of 31 December 2009.
ISO is the International Organization for Standardiza-
tion. It has a membership of 162* national standards
bodies from countries large and small, industrialized,
developing and in transition, in all regions of the world.
ISO’s portfolio of more than 18 000* standards provides
business, government and society with practical tools
for all three dimensions of sustainable development :
economic, environmental and societal.
ISO International Standards make a positive contribu-
tion to the world we live in. They facilitate trade, spread
knowledge, disseminate innovative advances in tech-
nology, and share good management and conformity
assessment practices.
ISO standards provide solutions and achieve benefits
for almost all sectors of activity, including agriculture,
construction, mechanical engineering, manufacturing,
distribution, transport, medical devices, information
and communication technologies, the environment,
energy, quality management, conformity assessment
and services.

Your satisfaction is our priority ! ………………………………………………………………
…………………………………………………… 2
Building customer satisfaction ………………………………………………………………
…………………………………………………….. 4
Ensuring continual improvemen t – Developing countrie s – International customer s – Consumer s – Public sector
stakeholder s – Industry – Society
Current successes ………………………………………………………………
………………………………………………………………………………. 10
Economic benefit s – Risk managemen t – Climate change and clean energ y – IC T – Continual improvemen t –
Roa d safet y – Health and safet y – Customer satisfaction awards
Customer outreach ………………………………………………………………
………………………………………………………………………….. 23
ISO in figures in 200 9 ………………………………………………………………
……………………………………………………………………… 2 6
Portfolio of ISO standards and Draft International Standards …………………………………………………………….. 28
ISO structure ………………………………………………………………
……………………………………………………………………………………….. 29
Principal of ficers ………………………………………………………………
………………………………………………………………………………… 30
Membership ………………………………………………………………
……………………………………………………………………………………….. 32
Member bodie s – Correspondent member s – Subscriber member s –
IS O member bodies’ contribution to the standards proc ess
Financial statements ………………………………………………………………
………………………………………………………………………… 34
Benchmarking success………………………………………………………………
…………………………………………………………………….. 3 6
Contents
1
Annual Report 2009

So why the theme of “customer focus ” ?
Simply, we are good, but we need to be great at focusing
on customer needs and then meeting these needs.
We also need to be clear about who we are talking
about when we talk about the ” customer “. Given the
huge diversity of those who are involved in developing,
using and benefiting from ISO standards, the term ” cus-
tomer ” can and should mean many different groups,
interests and individuals who may wear different hats
depending on what relationship they have with ISO.
For example, the ISO Central Secretariat exists to
respond to the needs of a key customer, the ISO mem-
bership. But to meet these needs, we work with a broad
range of organizations and people, including ISO mem-
bers, at the international, regional and national levels,
with the objective of helping to ensure ISO is recog-
nized and that ISO standards are globally relevant,
understood and used.
So, while the relationship might sound a bit compli-
cated, ISO does have customers, and a satisfied cus-
tomer is essential to the relevance and growth of any
organization, including ISO.
If ISO does not respond to and, ultimately, work to antic-
ipate customer needs, then we are no longer relevant
and do not deserve to exist. Does that mean we should
just wait for the need to be identified by others and
brought to ISO ? In my view, no. The speed of change
by ISO Secretary-General, Rob Steele

ISO standards. Integrated confidence ” was the theme
of the 2008 ISO Annual Report, a key objective in all of
ISO’s work. But it is hard to build confidence if you are
not meeting the needs of the users of ISO’s standards,
publications and services.
The theme of this year's Annual Report, ” ISO's customer
focus “, brings the absolute imperatives of relevance,
responsiveness and reality to meet ISO’s customers’
needs in everything ISO does.
Now you might say that this is stating the obvious –
you might even say that if we were not already doing
this, then how has ISO achieved the success that it has ?
After all, you will read in this 2009 Annual Report that
ISO is well on track to achieve the 2005-2010 strategic
goals set five years ago and, by any of the measures
used, is more relevant, recognized and responsive than
ever before.
And, to an extent, you would be right. In this report,
you will read how customers have profited from their
use of ISO standards, the progress made by ISO in
2009 and plans for the future. You will also read about
some of the personalities involved in developing and
using standards – after all, standardization is ” a people
activity “.
Your satisfaction is our priority !
2Annual Report 2009

We need to look ahead to be ready with the solutions
when they are needed, not years afterwards.
ISO has a strong legacy, built with great endeavour
by dedicated people, and this dedication is borne out
again in the 2009 results. But, in 2010 and beyond, as
the ISO Strategic Plan 2011-2015 is approved and then
implemented, there are major opportunities to :
Increase our customer focus significantly

Improve the responsiveness and efficiency of the •
standards development processes
Reinforce the skills and expertise of those who

develop standards
Maintain the strong financial base of the

organization.
This drive to improve should not be just incremen-
tal. ISO needs to look at what is needed and work out,
quickly, what must be done to meet the need. Invest –
ments made by ISO Council in past years are bearing
fruit, for example, the publication of the value of stand-
ards methodology ; communicating the benefits of
standards, and seeking advice from users of standards
as to what is needed at both technical committee level
and across industry sectors. This focus on outcomes
needs to continue, and there is a strong incentive to
look at how this can be done even better.
To everyone involved with ISO in 2009, especially
our customers, thanks !
and the nature of many of the subject areas where ISO
is providing, or could provide value means that by the
time the need is identified using traditional methods,
the opportunity, and the need, is gone.
So, we should look back proudly on ISO’s achievements
and the strong legacy that they provide. But, just as driv-
ing by looking in the rear-view mirror is not only inef-
ficient but also dangerous, so is resting on our laurels.
If we rest on our laurels, then we are wearing them on
the wrong end
! We need to look up, around and ahead
at where we can assist and focus on our customers.
What do I mean by this ?
We need to look at the major trends and ask how we
can assist our customers to tackle the threats and capi-
talize on the opportunities
We need to look around at the increasing convergence of
technologies and issues and ask how we can assist our cus-
tomers to strengthen their organizations and activities.
ISO Secretary-General, Rob Steele.
3
Annual Report 2009