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awarded with ISO 9001, ISO 14000, OHSAS 18000 certificates
In April, 2018 GTS Electronics was awarded ISO 9001, ISO 14000, OHSAS 18000 (ISO 45001) certificates thus becoming the first and only company so far in Georgia who has been the holder of three ISO certificates simultaneously.
The CCIFG asked for an interview with Nina Kochiashvili CEO of GTS Electronics in order to learn more.
What do the certificates represent for your company ?
The certificates represent the dedication of GTS Electronics to:
Could you summarise GTS Electronics’ activity ?
GTS Electronics provides low voltage power products providing an uninterrupted power supply to corporate clients such as banks, hospitals, office buildings, gas stations, hotels, communication companies, supermarkets, etc. GTS Electronics offers full service which includes the power planning, products, installation, testing, repair, after sales support and emergency services. GTS Electronics sells the world well-known brands including the SDMO generators, Huawei UPSs, Ritar’s batteries, Delta’s voltage regulators, solar sets,...
Why did you decide to apply for these certificates ?
GTS Electronics is a family owned company, which history dates back to the Soviet Georgia. The founder, my father has been working in the electronics most of his life as an engineer in different scientific institutions until the Soviets’ collapse. That was the time the company was founded by him and his colleagues as an assembling workshop of the Uninterrupted Power Systems. Workshop and its trade operations lasted until 2004 when the decision was taken to move to the next level of development. That was the time I’ve got involved into the company’s management. GTS Electronics moved to the new facility where it is located currently and started providing full service to its customers in Uninterruptable Power Supply sector.
2015 became another turning point. Company has been enlarging from 2004. By 2015 company has established itself as a market leader and as the single largest player in its market niche. Basically, the company entered its maturing period, it is the time when the existing opportunities are almost fully absorbed and further efficiency depends solely on the corporate management. That was the time we thought to improve and update our internal processes up to the best international practices and cement the major corporate values.
Could you describe the processes you followed ?
In 2016 we were introduced to the ISO opportunities by the Georgian Quality Foundation. It was their assistance which helped us to secure a grant financing from the EBRD. The preparation process was really hard and time and energy consuming. Sadly, Georgian legislation still struggles to meet the international/EU standards in many areas covered by the certificates, thus making the legal due diligence process extremely burdensome. The process was accompanied by the necessity of dealing with the Government entities, namely, with the: Ministry of Health, Labor and Social Affairs of Georgia, which is entitled to issue the recommendations how to manage the secured and safe area for the labor; Emergency Management Agency of Georgia – a unit regulating the fire safety; and Ministry of Environment Protection and Agriculture of Georgia.
Whole process has been finalized in 2 years. It is a long course. However it takes that long when the company does it for the first time and a few certificates together. Eventually, we finalized all steps in March 2018, when the company was audited by the international auditors and based on their positive assessment we were granted all three certificates in April, 2018: ISO 9001, ISO 14000, OHSAS 18000 (ISO 45001).
Why did you apply for the Quality Management ISO 9001 ?
I think Quality Management ISO 9001 is the most important certificate in corporate management system. It helped us to go through all our business procedures and make the necessary changes to upgrade them to the best international experiences. It saves us from many errors happening before and the company does not spend time and human resources improving them anymore. Now, after the system in place we are fully aware of our risks, opportunities and have clearly structured transparent corporate procedures which deliver the best experience to our customers. Furthermore it is an important tool to communicate with the market, to allow them to know that we deliver the quality services.
Why did you apply for the Environmental Management ISO 14000?
In reality, our business is not that polluting. Basically it produces some waste like any other company however its impact on the environment is still limited. The decision to apply for the Environmental Management ISO 14000 was taken primarily because of our corporate values. It is simple. We the employees of our company, our families, all of us love nature, we all want our kids to breathe fresh air, we all want to drink clean water and at the end we all have some social responsibility to make any possible positive impact for our ecology. During the application process we implemented whole new waste management system. All potentially hazardous materials are collected and processed based on the international standards. Literally no paper is recycled anymore, all get collected and exchanged for the new papers.
Why apply for the Occupational Health and Safety Management OHSAS 18000 ?
The Occupational Health and Safety Management OHSAS 18000 was probably the most important certificate for us. 30 engineers (technical personal) work in the company apart from the administrative/management staff and we all make a large family. We work together, we party together, and we have very strong social connections. Our people are our strength and that’s what makes GTS Electronics the successful company. Thus, ensuring the safety of the workplace was our top priority. Taking care of the fire safety, ensuring the working facilities are well ventilated, protected and cleaned were our priorities.
What are your next steps ?
Next step for us is of course to maintain all three certificates, we are going to be audited annually and all shall be renewed every three years which does not allow us to compromise. Our strategy is to push for a better quality, we want to identify ourselves as the corporation with the best possible business procedures to make sure we maintain all our customers and increase their base which can allow us to go abroad sometimes in the future which is the next big step we are gearing for.
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