Canadian Fracmaster Ltd., an oil and gas servicing company, has been an active participant in the domestic market since 1976. The knowledge and experience gained during this period allowed Canadian Fracmaster Ltd. to expand into international markets during the late 1980's. Recognizing the increased focus (internationally and domestically) on quality assurance, quality control, continuous improvement and service product standardization Canadian Fracmaster Ltd. has undertaken to implement and registrar in the IS0-9000 program. At the mid-point of1996 it was decided to include the Engineering Services and Coil Tubing Engineering Services Departments in the IS0-9000 program simultaneously with the Research and Development Laboratory Facility.

Both Engineering Services Departments have inherently operated in a dynamic, innovative, rapid and client servicing environment. Meshing standardization, with the resultant structuring of IS0-9000, and the ongoing need for the development and inspiration of new processes and ideas was required. The intent of this paper is to focus on the learning experience of the implementation and registration process in a functioning Engineering Department.

As well, the paper provides suggestions and recommendations for companies considering IS0-9000 registration or for those currently participating in the process. The paper will outline immediate and long term benefits (expected and unexpected), long term goals and the inevitable implementation hurdles.


Quality assurance, quality control and continuous improvement programs have gained importance internationally during recent years. Increasing numbers of industrialized nations have adopted ISO 9000 as a national quality system standard, making it increasingly important to secure registration for international competitive advantage. Specifically, international tender requests (as well as increasing numbers of domestic tender requests) are requiring submission of corporate quality control programs with direct reference to the ISO 9000 Quality system. Canadian Fracmaster Ltd., largely through increased exposure in international markets, recognized the current importance and future necessity for a corporate quality assurance system. As a result, during 1996 it was decided to implement and register a quality system through the ISO 9001–94 Standard.

Implementation of a corporate quality system that meets ISO-9000 specifications can be confusing, costly and time consuming. In an effort to apply the quality program in a logical and cost efficient manner, management chose to begin implementation in a strategically chosen department. Information learned from the implementation and ISO 9000 registration process would be assessed for viability, corporate net value, market response and future direction before applying the program to additional corporate departments.

When selecting an appropriate department for initial implementation the following specifications were taken into consideration. For expeditious quality system feedback and evaluation the initiating department should have direct contact with internal and external clients. To ensure ease of implementation and cost efficiency the department should be small in size. Lastly, to facilitate implementation the department should have well established work functions and a core of long serving personnel experienced in the work procedures.

The Technical Services Department is comprised of the Laboratory Services, Engineering Services, Quality Assurance Department and Coil Tubing Engineering Services (refer to Flowchart 1.1, "Technical Services, Fabrication and Quality Assurance").

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