ISO 14001 and AA1000: Introduction
Being responsible for the effects that an organization causes is an essential part of running a company. Therefore, it is crucial to make sure that the quality standards addressing the issue of environmental impacts should be met successfully. Among the current regulations that address the subject matter, ISO 14001 and AA1000 need to be mentioned. Approved in 1996, ISO 14001 provides a list of environmental standards that organizations must adhere to when carrying out the activities that may be potentially threatening to the sustainability levels (ISO 14000 – Environmental management, 2016). Unlike ISO 14001, AA1000 addresses the issue of stakeholder engagement directly. According to the main provisions of the standard, the target audience must be engaged actively in complying with other standards such as ISO- or GRI-related ones (Standards, 2016). However, both regulations have a similar impact on the stakeholders, compelling them to be more responsible in their choice of the tools determining the production- and waste-management-related processes.
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ISO 14001 and How It Affects the Stakeholders, Future Investors, and Organizational Sustainability (Saudi Arabia)
A closer look at ISO 14001 will show that the standard has been designed to make sure that the negative impact that the activities of an organization have on the environment should be minimized. The regulation is supposed to promote self-reflection among the target audiences, thus, making them understand the gravity of failing to meet the environmental safety standards. Furthermore, ISO 14001 can be viewed as the means of designing the tool that can help measure the organizations’ negative impact on the environment. Therefore, it informs the stakeholders about not only the necessity to change the production and waste management processes in their organizations but also analyze the changes in the environmental effects. As a result, the stakeholders are likely to develop a better understanding of environmentalism and its significance. Furthermore, the means of controlling the effects of the production processes in the organization can be introduced successfully with the help of ISO 14001 (ISO 14000 – Environmental management, 2016).
The impact of ISO 14001 is especially clearly visible in Saudi Arabia, where the oil and gas industry has the greatest impact on the state economy. Seeing that the companies operating in the identified environment are typically viewed as potentially dangerous to the well-being of the citizens and ecosystems, it is especially important to make sure that the ISO 14001 standard is followed by local organizations. Apart from affecting the stakeholders, the identified framework also defines the success of promotion the Corporate Social Responsibility and sustainability principles on an organizational level (ISO 14000 – Environmental management, 2016). By accepting the idea of the damage and waste reduction, organizations and its members recognize the need to be responsible for the impact that they have on the global wellbeing.
Furthermore, the standard affects the investors to a considerable degree. Making the Saudi Arabian companies working in the domain of the oil and gas industry comply with the existing safety regulations, the standard allows for increasing safety levels and making companies more attractive to investors. As a result, the latter are eager to contribute extensively to the development of the companies in question. Indeed, according to the latest statistical data, Saudi Arabia is the third most attractive state for foreign investors after UAE and Turkey (Saudi Arabia: Foreign investment, 2015). Therefore, the number of foreign investments in the Saudi Arabian economy has increased significantly over the past few years.
AA1000 and How It Affects the Stakeholders, Future Investors, and Organizational Sustainability (Saudi Arabia)
Although AA1000 might seem another typical standard that compels the target audiences to meet specific requirements, it, in fact, should be viewed as both a standard and a tool for persuading people to follow the rest of the regulations. Consequently, the identified provision affects the very way in which people perceive the concept of standardization, including its significance. The latter is especially important seeing that most people seem to take the existing quality criteria for granted (). The regulation, therefore, promotes a responsible attitude toward meeting the existing requirements, fostering the concept of responsibility as the foundation for the decision-making processes in the identified community (Standards, 2016).
The application of the framework has also affected the investors’ decisions to a considerable extent. Similarly to the ISO 14001 standard mentioned above, it has created the platform for more efficient communication between investors and the companies that they consider as their possible targets. Furthermore, the development of relationships between investors and companies has contributed to removing trade barriers and, therefore, opening a plethora of opportunities for both parties involved. Consequently, the organizations seeking the firms that could be possible targets for investment became more inclined to including the Saudi Arabian organizations into the list of their options.
Finally, the AA1000 standard has contributed to a significant change in the relationships between companies and the members of the society. Previously, the effects that the firms working in the oil and gas industry had on the identified audience slipped under the radar of the organizations. At present, however, a significant change in the perception of the relationships between the identified parties is occurring. The AA1000 framework, therefore, can be considered the tool for making the change in the relationships between the society and the Saudi Arabian organizations a conscious process. In other words, the companies operating in the oil and gas industry recognize the necessity to facilitate a safe environment for the local residents, as well as for people all over the world. As a result, the relationships between the organizations and the population are based on mutual trust and respect (Kadasah, 2013).
Meeting the ISO Regulations: Conclusion
Both ISO 14001 and AA1000 serve a very specific purpose of creating the environment in which the stakeholders could focus on maintaining safety levels high and preventing the members of the organization or community in question from suffering damage. Thus, it is crucial to make sure that the stakeholders should comply with the requirements set by these standards. Moreover, the nature of some of the standards, such as AA1000, allows for an introspect into the reasons why these regulations were approved, in the first place. As a result, the premises for promoting a more responsible attitude among the stakeholders are built. In a way, ISO 14001 and especially AA1000 contribute to the ethical progress in the community, serving as the foil for not only memorizing the essential principles of safety but also developing an intrinsic understanding thereof. Furthermore, the application of the standards is likely to trigger an immediate increase in the investments made by foreign companies. Thus, the premises for sustainability and the consistent economic growth can be built.
ISO 14000 – Environmental management. (2016). Web.
Kadasah, N. A. (2013). Attitudes of managers towards the potential effects of ISO 14001 in Saudi Arabia: Factor analysis. International Business Research; 6(7), 91-101.
Saudi Arabia: Foreign investment. (2015). Web.
Standards. (2016). Web.