Standardization for Small and Medium-size Enterprises (SMEs)
Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are a significant and vital part of a country's economy. If they want to remain competitive and play a significant role in both the domestic and international markets, they must constantly upgrade, grow, increase the number of employees, increase their range of products and services, markets, and thus achieve greater profit.
One of the tools that will certainly help in the realization of the goals of SMEs is the standards.
European statistics show that SMEs represent about 98% of all business in Europe and employ more than 90 million people. Despite this, it is unlikely that SMEs will be actively involved in the standards development process, unlike large companies. In order to ensure that the standards meet the needs of smaller companies, SMEs need to be provided with information on standardization activities, and at the same time that their interests are adequately represented during the development, preparation, and review of the standards. In this process, both standardization bodies and business associations, especially those representing SMEs, have an important role to play.
For that purpose, the Institute for Standardization of the Republic of North Macedonia (ISRSM) in this section provides information, tools, and support to explain the benefits of using the standards. At the same time, this information and tools provide guidance and represent a way for standardization bodies and business associations to work together both nationally and at the European and international levels, making the standardization process easier to understand and more accessible to SMEs.
The guidelines given refer to several main steps:
- What is a standard?
- Benefits for SMEs from the use of standards
- Find the right standard
- Be "involved" - involved
- Seminars and workshops
- Useful links
- Publications and brochures
WHAT IS A STANDARD?
Standards are all around us, although we are not always aware of them. One example is the widely used A4 paper standard.
There are several different types of standards that apply to and include requirements and/or recommendations for products, systems, processes, or services. Standards can also be a way of describing measurement and testing methods or establishing common terminology within a specific sector. In essence, standards are an agreed-upon way of doing things.
Benefits for SMEs FROM THE USE OF STANDARDS
The use of standards can offer a range of powerful business and marketing tools for organizations of all sizes. You can use them to improve your performance and manage the risks you face, working in a more efficient and sustainable way. They will enable your clients to demonstrate the quality of what you do, and will help you implement best practices in your organization.
Through their use:
In a word, your business will be recognizable and different from the others thanks to the standards.
FIND THE RIGHT STANDARD
Finding the right standard for your business can be challenging. Visit our online catalog where through the section EXTENDED SEARCH you can search for published standards, standards in preparation (projects), and draft standards of public debate. You can search by standard reference, keyword, ICS classification, Directive, Technical Committee, or date. For each standard and/or project, the Institute provides you with access to the basic data and short content for the stated standards on its website.
Visit our contents which offer you the following tools with the help of which you can obtain standards, you can get access to the content of the draft standards and submit a comment on the draft standards.
Web reader - reading This tool gives you access to the content of a number of standards given in packages of your choice.
Ability to comment on the content of the draft standards - Your comment in a few steps - registration required via "My Account" - See Guide for comments on the content of the draft Macedonian standards
Other useful links
For detailed information regarding the content and sale of the Macedonian standards, please contact the Information Sector, ie the Info Center of ISRSM at the following contact
There are several ways for SMEs to be involved in the standards preparation process:
See the new proposals for source national standards - "CEN / CENELEC - Monthly Registers"
SEMINARS AND WORKSHOPS
Raising awareness of standardization is the first and most important step in the process of helping companies and organizations become familiar with the world of standards. Increased awareness of standards will help SMEs understand how they can be used as tools to achieve their business goals.
What can be done to raise awareness?
More information on SME activities can also be found on the attached website of the European standardization bodies CEN and CENELEC
PUBLICATIONS AND BROCHURES
ISO 9001 For Small Businesses - What to Do
The handbook, ISO 9001 for Small Businesses, is jointly published by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Trade Center (ITC)
ISO/IEC 27001 For small businesses - practical tips
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) have just published a new handbook providing practical advice to SMEs on how to achieve the benefits of implementing an information security management system (ISMS) based on the international standard ISO/IEC 27001.
Advantages of small business Read more ..
Publications and brochures: