This is generally the first question any business owner will be thinking of when entertaining the idea of implementing an ISO system and getting it certified. It is also the question that potential clients usually ask me first.
There is no simple answer but by determining your requirements using the following factors you can set yourself a budget to work with.
The first question you need to ask yourself is who do you want to implement the system? Your options are generally restricted either yourself (General Manager or Director etc.), an employee or a consultant. If you decide you want to do it yourself your main cost will be your time and around $100 for a copy of the ISO standard. If you have an employee in mind you need to budget at least 3-4 weeks of their wages as this is how long it will generally take a semi-experienced person to design and implement a certifiable system. The main issues with doing it yourself or using an employee is that it generally takes longer and may not pass the audit first time. If this is the case your audit costs will go up and the slower your system will be implemented. Consultants can be expensive however this does come with benefits. When looking for a consultant it can be cheaper to use them to just assist with building your system rather than building it for you. fees can range from $2-3000 for basic assistance to tens of thousands depending on the consultant and depending on the size of your project.
The next question you need to ask is who do I want to certify me? There are many third party certification bodies out there so it is important to get a few quotes and if possible find someone that understands the industry you are in. The most recognisable is probably SAI Global with their 5 ticks logo however they may not be the most cost effective option for a small business. Budget at least $3-4000 for a certification audit to allow some wiggle room. It may be less for small businesses or much more for large.
The last thing you need to think about is who do you want to maintain the system? For a system to be effective and worthwhile it needs to be reviewed regularly and evolve with the business. For many small businesses this is not a full time position but it will require someone with experience or training. For a large business with many sites or customers it can require a full time employee. allow a budget of between $1-3000 to put a current employee through at least a two day auditor course or a course on managing a particular ISO system. We highly recommend Gray Management Systems http://www.grayms.com.au/ for ISO training.
I hope this is helpful and as always if you require any more information or would like us give you a quote for consultation please contact me firstname.lastname@example.org or visit us at www.8020mc.com.au