How ISO 44001:2017 can help your business achieve successful collaboration with others

How ISO 44001:2017 can help your business achieve successful collaboration with others

How ISO 44001:2017 can help your business achieve successful collaboration with others

Businesses that choose to work with others benefit through reduced costs, sharing resources, and access to new ideas and services. If done correctly, businesses can thrive in a competitive world. Otherwise, it could spell doom to young partnerships and joint ventures, adding risks and threatening the business’s sustainability.

ISO 44001:2017- a collaborative Business Relationship Management Systems

In 2017, the International Organization for Standardization saw the need to publish a new standard that would help organizations implement a flexible system of managing, establishing, and ending collaborative relationships between two or more businesses.

This standard provides businesses with the components of a management system that handles business relationships as well as operational process requirements.

As with other standards, it adopts the high-level- structure, making it possible to implement. It features an eight-stage lifecycle model that facilitates sustainable relations. The stages are:

  1. Operational awareness-Knowing the organization’s ability for collaboration
  2. Knowledge-Evaluating collaborative benefits in all businesses involved.
  3. Internal assessment-Assessing how the organizations are set up for collaboration.
  4. Partner selection-Establishing a partner selection process
  5. Working together-creating a joint governance model for working together
  6. Value creation-Establishing a joint basis for improvement
  7. Staying together-Measuring, monitoring and managing the relationship over time
  8. Exit strategy activation-creating a joint process for disengagement if the need arises.

Application of the standard

ISO 44001:2017 can be utilized in the following ways:

  • A single application, i.e. a single project, merger or acquisition
  • An individual business relationship i.e. one on one relationship, partnership or alliance
  • Multiple relationships, i.e. networks, consortia or end to end supply chains
  • All external business relationships

Appointment of the SER (Senior Executive Responsible)

The standard stipulates that an organization must appoint a Senior Executive Responsible (SER) who will:

  • Be the lead for the development and implementation of the collaborative relationship. They will have a well-defined mandate and accountability toensure that processes, culture and policies required by the standard are adhered to and maintained.
  • Be responsible for performance evaluation and continual improvement in all activities covered by the collaborative business relationship management system.
  • Be the point man and provide leadership during the lifecycle of the business relationship, facilitating the use of the collaborative business process.

Development of Relationship Management Plans or RMPs

In addition to the appointment of the SER, the standard also calls for the development of Relationship Management plans.

A cooperate RMP details the business objectives and key processes that will be adopted by the organization to set them up for a collaborative opportunity. The RPM will detail governance models, roles and responsibilities, partner selection strategy and risk management.

Specific RPMS give background information for team members to establish a platform for joint relationship management during the lifecycle of the collaboration. It ensures that there is effective communication on all levels of the organization concerning the collaborative process.


If your organization is keen on the certification of its collaborative business management system, you can make an inquiry from your preferred ISO accreditation body.

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