BCCM multi-site quality management system

The BCCM consortium finds it essential to meet the expectations of its customers and stakeholders and wants to assure the quality of its biological material and related information. Therefore, it was one of the first European culture collections having implemented a formal quality management system.

Since July 2005, the quality management system of BCCM is certified as meeting the requirements of the international ISO 9001 standard. The multi-site certificate covers the following core activities of the collections as well as of the coordination cell:

  • Accession, control, preservation, storage and supply of biological material and related information in the frame of public deposits, safe deposits and patent deposits;
  • Coordination, project management and representation of the BCCM consortium.

The BCCM quality management system is centrally administrated and built around a unique quality policy and a single strategic plan with objectives that are shared by all the BCCM entities. It is subject to a local as well as a central management review and is monitored in function of common Performance Indicators. The unique core documents of the quality management system are complemented by specific, but harmonised, local documents at each site. The planning of the internal audits is centrally followed up. The treatment of complaints, non-conformities, corrective and preventive actions and improvements is also identical for all BCCM entities.

At regular intervals, the BCCM consortium organises client satisfaction surveys in order to have a feedback of its users on the quality of the services delivered. To anticipate on the future users' needs the BCCM consortium strives to have an open and constructive dialogue with its users.

BCCM/IHEM and BCCM/ITM are active in the medical field and have implemented an additional quality management system. At BCCM/IHEM the quality controls to test viability, identity, fungal and bacterial purity are accredited according to the ISO 17025 standard. At BCCM/ITM the control of viability, identity and mycobacterial purity on the batches for release are accredited according to the ISO 15189 standard.

The BCCM quality management system will be further developed in the spirit of continuous improvement. In this sense, all your input and feedback is extremely appreciated.