Top management, key officers, and staff of the DA-National Fisheries Research and Development Institute (NFRDI) led by Executive Director Dr. Lilian Garcia participated in the “Orientation on ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management System (QMS)” organized by the Development Academy of the Philippines (DAP) on April 23, 2024.

Serving as resource persons for the orientation were Director Samual Rosal and Project Manager Maria Veronica Angeles of the Productivity and Development Center-Technology Management Office (PDC-TMO) of DAP.

Discussed during the orientation were QMS concepts, principles, and requirements, as well as the critical roles and responsibilities of the top management and general employees in the establishment and sustainability of the ISO 9001:2015 QMS of NFRDI. The importance and benefits of implementing the QMS in improving service quality and productivity in the public sector and the project’s overview methodology, components, and roadmap were also presented during the orientation.

ISO (derived from the Greek word “isos,” meaning equal) is an independent, non-governmental international organization with a membership of 165 national standards bodies tasked to create international standards. According to Dir. Rosal, out of the 135 non-government agencies and attached agencies in the country, only 111 have ISO 9001 certification.

Part of the expected out of the activity was a pledge of commitment to the entire process emphasizing “Commitment to quality not just for Compliance only,” which the NFRDI staff committed and signed.

NFRDI is one of 14 beneficiary agencies of the Government Quality Management Program (GQMP) awarded on February 29, 2024. Beneficiary agencies were selected based on the relevance of the agency’s services, management commitment, and organizational capability to implement the project. This year’s GQMP beneficiaries included local government units, national government agencies, state universities and colleges, and a provincial hospital.

“This [ISO certification] is important in elevating further the integrity of our outputs, knowing the importance of science-based information and technology in formulating the relevant policies and programs in the fishery industry that would impact the lives of Filipinos,” said Dr. Garcia in her closing message.

“Public office is a public trust. And we, as public servants, must adhere to public accountability. We can only do that if our services are of quality. That is why having ISO certification is very important,” she concluded. ### (Rita dela Cruz)