Benefits of implementing management system standards: A case study of certified companies in the Pearl River Delta, China

W. M. To, Ka Chun Lee, Billy T.W. Yu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to explore the extent of implementing management system standards among ISO (and other) certified companies in the Pearl River Delta and its effect on the perceived benefits. Design/methodology/approach - A cross-sectional survey of certified companies was carried out using a self-administrated questionnaire. A total of 157 companies participated in the study. Findings - It was found that the majority of the responding companies implement more than one standardized management system, mostly adopting the quality management, environmental management, and occupational health and safety management systems (i.e. ISO9001, ISO14001, and OHSAS18001). Results show that companies certified to ISO9001 and ISO14001 gain more benefits than the others. Research limitations/implications - The study shows that companies implementing multiple management systems can have better corporate performance, product quality, and marketing edges than the others. The results indicate that different combinations of management systems give rise to different level of performance. Originality/value - There is a lack of empirical proof that more benefits will be gained when multiple management system standards are adopted. The paper addresses this short-coming and provides evidence that acquiring more system certifications will result in greater perceived benefits.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)17-28
Number of pages12
JournalTQM Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2012


  • China
  • Management systems
  • Pearl River Delta
  • Perceived benefits
  • Performance measures
  • Quality standards

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Decision Sciences
  • Business and International Management
  • General Business,Management and Accounting
  • Strategy and Management


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