However, quality management remains an under-researched concept in strategic resource management (Powell, 1995). The standards provided by the ISO 9000 (ISO) were developed from the ISO/TC document, and quality management criteria is now used in corporations across the globe which have been taken up by over 880, 000 corporations in over 161 nations (International Organization for Standardization, 2006). As such, the ISO is a generic management system benchmark for quality management expectations in business due to; its customer-centered approach to their needs and requirements; its regulatory requirements; its orientation toward customer satisfaction; and commitment to continual improvement achieving these goals (International Organization for Standardization).
An individually owned corporation that has successfully implemented the ISO standards is FEXCO in County Kerry, Ireland, is an internationally recognized competitive company (FEXCO, 2006a). The corporation provides world wide payment services for both corporate and public markets, for activities such as financial transfers, bureau de change and currency conversion. On average, FEXCO processes 19 million transactions annually. Over 1,400 staffs are employed with the company, almost half of them being based in Kerry, and the others located in country offices in countries such as the United Kingdom, Spain, Malta, Australia, Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Dubai and the USA. Predominantly, FEXCO has adopted ISO 9000 guidelines to assist with decision making with regard to information technologies (IT), and country and currency codes. The corporation first implemented the ISO code in 1996.
FEXCO displays its commitment to ISO principles in its description of its core competencies and values; a commitment to the best technology, staff and services; a focus on the customer (i.e., people matter); a desire to form long-term relationships with stakeholders; transparency and accountability of corporate practices; embracing innovation and treasury management; and having technology driving the global payment transactions (FEXCO, 2006b). The organization was recently awarded the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS) compliance accreditation for its excelling efforts to implement technology that secures cardholder account data security. The award is an example of the effectiveness of ISO principles, as further elaborated by Managing Director of FEXCO, Dermot O'Shea:
We are delighted to have received this important payment card industry accreditation. As FEXCO deploys its Dynamic Currency Conversion solutions internationally, it is vital that we are accredited by the Visa AIS and MasterCard SDP programs to ensure a high level of confidence for our ever-growing customer base (FEXCO, 2006c).
With regard to its focus on continual improvement of staff, FEXCO has drawn on ISO standards to develop managers by providing them the opportunity to pass a Diploma in Management FEXCO, 2006d). Working in conjunction with Carole Hogan & Associates, the managers were accredited by the Institute of Commercial Management, a world renowned Foundation that provides high quality education. The Diploma was initiated in February of 2005 in Kerry, and aims to expose new managers to an overview of corporate culture, procedures, guidelines (e.g., ISO 9000) and goals.