A successful ISMS (Information Security Management System) provides a systematic approach to safeguarding sensitive company data. Due to the direct impact the ISMS safety has on business performance, employee activities, and financial elements; ISO 27001 is one of the most popular ways to manage this business critical component.

ISO certifications have global notoriety thanks to the market-relevant International Standards that support innovation and provide solutions to global challenges. However, what most companies fail to consider when approaching certification is that this looks slightly different for every business. Furthermore, ISO 27001 will only be successful for your business if the requirements are configured in a way that embeds them into every aspect of corporate operations.

In this article, we will guide you through the recommended implementation process and share insights on how your business can get more out of ISO 27001 with the right policies and processes. Keep on reading to learn more!

Why Is It Important to Handle the Implementation of ISO 27001 Carefully?

Before we dive into the how’s, we wanted to touch on the why’s.

As you will know if you have read our blog about what ISO 27001 is, the quality standard has a direct duty of care for protecting sensitive information that malicious parties are very interested in accessing. This is one of the reasons that ISO 27001 implementation can take up to a year for some companies, as its configuration must touch upon every aspect of a business and be woven into the policies that uphold daily operations.

This also represents the main differences between ISO 27001 and Cyber Essentials, as the ISO option considers internal operations and external vulnerabilities. Not only will a business waste money without successfully implementing ISO, as they won’t pass the audits, but they won’t benefit from the enhanced safety that fully compliant companies have.

What Are the Steps for Incorporating ISO 27001 Into a Business?

What Are the Steps for Incorporating ISO 27001 Into a Business?

Many UK companies believe that change is expensive, which is one of the reasons they tend to shy away from updating policies and procedures. Whilst we are not saying that this compliance measure is free to do, the cost of the ISO 27001 certification quickly pays for itself when the requirements are implemented properly.

This can be achieved using the following stages:

Step One: The first stepping stone on the journey to ISO 27001 compliance is to bring together an implementation team who will work on the project throughout every part of the process. This should include all relevant stakeholders involved in daily management, auditing and scaling operations.

You should also ensure that coverage from each department is accounted for as an ISMS spans the entire company. Finally, selecting a team of IT experts who can provide professional advice is recommended. This is a service that we offer at Creative Networks!

Step Two: Next up, you will need to undertake a gap analysis of operations versus the requirements that ISO 27001 has. Once this assessment has taken place, a complete implementation plan should be created, which breaks the tasks down into a focused timeline of tasks with clear project owners. This information may need to be viewed during the application process, so keep detailed notes. You should also pay attention to the wider set of ISO 27001 controls to ensure compliance is considered in even the smallest details.

Step Three: Now that you have a clear plan and objectives, it is time to start forming the ISO-compliant ISMS.

While a process approach is needed, how your business handles the details is up to you, which is another reason that working with an IT professional is advised. Throughout the stage, a document structure, policies, processes, and employee management elements should all be firmed up, as these are the basis of the compliance application.

The scope of your own ISMS will also need to be formatted into a management framework which has a scope and coverage relevant to the size of a business and its operations. If this is deemed to not sufficiently cover everything, it is unlikely that the audit phase of application will be passed.

Step Four: With a successful management framework for ISMS excellence also comes the need for security controls which facilitate safe working. It is not just the processes that enhance safety but also the software and tools configured to suit the organisation’s requirements. The suitability of which will be tested during auditing. It is this need to align with modern security measures which also shows that ISO 27001 is not outdated.

Step Five: Next up is implementing risk management. As a core component of any ISMS, a detailed risk register must be defined as the purpose of the compliance measures to actively work to mitigate and hopefully eliminate these issues altogether.

This phase includes identification, evaluation and issue resolution of which the processes that are determined should be suitable for application to future problems should they arise. Once highlighted, the risk treatment plan must also be implemented and tested with full documentation to support it.

Step Six: You are now ready to test the measures in place as a robust and ISO-compliant ISMS should have been the result after this detailed implementation process. Before you apply, it is recommended that several internal audits are carried out to highlight any remaining issues. This also gives a company more chance of first-time success.

Now you are ready to apply!

What Ongoing Considerations Must Be Made for ISO 27001?

Once the ISO 27001 ISMS system is implemented, the main consideration is to ensure its long-term success. Even once the certification has been achieved, internal auditing and external audits must occur during the three-year term of the award.

This is hinged on successful staff training, compliant business scaling, ongoing process adaptations and a constant high level of importance being placed on security operations.

Do Companies Benefit From Fine -Tuning ISO 27001 Implementation?

Do Companies Benefit From Fine -Tuning ISO 27001 Implementation?

The reason that ISO 27001 is required is to protect sensitive information and reduce risk of company data being accessed. As well as being able to achieve ISO certification, some other benefits of managing the implementation process in a professional way are as follows:

Stronger Audit Trails

Auditing isn’t just important for ISO but also every other aspect of business operations. Having strong auditing also allows employee training, insurance applications, and decision making to take place with reduced risk. Auditing is also a brilliant way to unite departments and report on performance in a universally understandable way.

Improved ROI

With the devil being in the details, companies that have a more substantial alignment with ISO 27001 requirements have more chances of receiving ROI quicker. As well as being able to check if a company is ISO 27001 certified, which improves competitiveness, compliance measures ensure that financials are protected and businesses can operate more efficiently.

Knowledgeable Culture

Finally, a strong ISO 27001 organisation also benefits from having an equally resilient company culture. The fact that 88% of employees believe a strong company culture is key to business success speaks volumes on the matter. Additionally, the team’s involvement in the implementation process improves the chance of long-term compliance and strong auditing, as everyone will have the ISMS requirements ingrained in their daily work life.

Choose Creative Networks for ISO 27001 Implementation

The Creative Networks team offer a complete ISO 27001 service ranging from initial gap analysis to process implementation that must meet strict ISO standards. Please contact us today to learn more about how we can support your business.

We can also support you in understanding other compliance queries such as, “Do I need Cyber Essentials if I have ISO 27001?” and “Is ISO 9001 or 27001 right for your business?”. Thanks to our detailed-oriented approach and extensive experience supporting all aspects of ISO 27001, no aspect of ISO implementation is outside our remit.

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