JIS News

Story Highlights

  • PICA undertook the process for its passport production and issuance operations over nine months, which culminated in the National Certification Body of Jamaica (NCBJ) awarding the entity its certificate.
  • He noted that when agencies, like PICA, which are deemed critical to national development, take steps to become QMS certified, it indicates that “their work will be seamless, efficient and to the benefit of the country”.
  • Additionally, he said it “forces the agency to address issues and examine our operations and processes to ensure that we are always at our best”.

Having successfully seen the Passport, Immigration and Citizenship Agency (PICA) through to ISO 9001: 2015 Quality Management System (QMS) certification, the Ministry of National Security is now looking to pilot other entities under its portfolio towards achieving the same for their operations.

PICA undertook the process for its passport production and issuance operations over nine months, which culminated in the National Certification Body of Jamaica (NCBJ) awarding the entity its certificate.

Industry, Investment, and Commerce Minister, Hon. Audley Shaw, who has portfolio responsibility for the NCBJ, presented the document to PICA’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Andrew Wynter, during a recent ceremony at the passport agency’s head office in Kingston.

PICA is the first agency of the National Security Ministry to achieve the feat.

Speaking during the ceremony, Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry, Senator the Hon. Matthew Samuda, advised that work is “well underway” by the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) towards becoming IS0 9001: 2015 certified.

“This is something that we are proud of. While PICA has come out of the gates first and we congratulate them, I give a commitment that the (JCF and the) other agencies will not be far behind,” he added.

He noted that when agencies, like PICA, which are deemed critical to national development, take steps to become QMS certified, it indicates that “their work will be seamless, efficient and to the benefit of the country”.

He said that PICA’s importance, in this regard, relates to its role in managing Jamaica’s borders and being the first point of contact for visitors from overseas.

Mr. Wynter, in his remarks, said the QMS Standard defines and provides the framework and context within which the agency operates.

Additionally, he said it “forces the agency to address issues and examine our operations and processes to ensure that we are always at our best”.

“This (ISO certification) journey has just begun… and it is our intention not just to be certified at the 9001 Standard,” he indicated.

Among the other Standards that Mr. Wynter said are being explored are: ISO 31,000, which relates to risk management; ISO 17,000 – information and communication technology; and ISO 14,000 – quality, adding that “we are researching one that speaks to customer service and identity management”.

“As we adopt each of these Standards, we are demonstrating to the world that PICA is a global organisation that means business. I encourage all of my fellow public sector partners… to come onboard and be a part of this journey. This is something that creates value, not just for your employees, but the organisation and country,” he said.

Meanwhile, NCBJ Manager, Navenia Wellington Ford, said that PICA’s implementation of the ISO 9001: 2015 QMS demonstrates the agency’s commitment to standards and quality.

“We are looking to them serving as a shining example to others… and we stand ready to certify them also,” she said.

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