Industry Forum

With an increase in public awareness on sustainability there has become an increasing need for organisations to demonstrate corporate responsibility on social, economic and environmental issues and how organisations manage these expectations for the benefit on society and the communities in which they operate. ISO 14001 is a means of implementing the required elements that form an effective Environmental Management system. It provides evidence that an organisation has considered any effects on the environment from its activities and how it can manage these and look to reduce its overall impacts. This provides benefits for identifying how waste can be reduced or eliminated, providing a cost-benefit as well as providing confidence that the company have adopted corporate social responsibility.

The standard is based on four key elements:

Environmental Policy

It is important that there is a commitment to apply the requirements of the standard and as an organisation the top management should identify Commitment to Continuous Improvement, Prevention of Pollution and compliance with legislation and regulations this shall be documented, implemented and maintained so it can be communicated to the relevant interested parties.


For the implementation of 14001, the organisation needs to consider its risk and opportunities and assess the aspects of its activities on the environment. From this analysis the scope of what it is targeting to achieve can be determined and objectives set that are realistic to bring about improvement in the performance. A further part of planning is to understand what obligations an organisation has relevant to the environment, this could be statutory or regulatory as well as other commitments including those that it has identified as part of the planning processes and those within its own policy commitments.

Implementation and Operation

Once an organisation has determined what it is looking to achieve, it needs to provide the resources, this includes defining roles and responsibilities in the management system as well as adopting operational controls including any in emergency and abnormal conditions and providing resources so intended outcomes can be achieved.

Checking and Corrective Action

As with all management systems that adopt a Plan, Do, Check, Act approach, assessment needs to be carried out to understand the level to which its objectives have been achieved. Part of this is auditing the system to see how requirements are effective and identify improvements. Monitoring and measures of the system allow evidence-based decisions to be made on focus and resourcing improvements in the environmental management system.

During the 1980s, SMMT, our parent company became increasingly involved in quality matters and in improving supply chain management in the Automotive industry. This culminated in the creation of IF with considerable support from the then Department for Trade and Industry. Its work has spread to other industries and its success is being replicated in other sectors of the economy.

SMMT Industry Forum uses its extensive expertise in improving the automotive manufacturing industry to help major, global cross-sector organisations understand, optimise and improve both manufacturing capability and business performance.

The course has been developed by experienced 3rd party auditors to provide the tools and techniques to plan, conduct, report and close out effective environmental audits.

Industry Forum has over 25 years experience in training auditors at all levels of the certification cycle including 3rd, 2nd and 1st party auditors, it utilises its understanding in the complexities of management systems to develop engaging courses to inform as well as build auditor competence and understanding in the requirements of management systems for effective audits.