Non-conformances are defined as a failure to conform, or non-fulfilment of specified requirements. Basically, whenever an organisation does not satisfy the requirements of either the standard, relevant third-party requirements or their own procedures then that would be considered a non-conformance
So, what does this mean in terms of an Environmental Management System or ISO 14001 certification?
That really depends on the severity of the non-conformance – when it comes to the certification audit, they are generally separated into two categories, minor (sometimes referred to as a part non-conformance) and major.
Identification of a major non-conformance will often result from –
Minor non-conformances are defined as any non-conformance that isn’t major, or to put it another way; the non-conformance is unlikely to result in the failure of the EMS.
For instance an isolated incident i.e. Daily records are required for equipment use, but it is noted that one record was not inputted