Dispute Resolution

ISO 10003:2018, Quality management – Customer satisfaction – Guidelines for dispute resolution external to organizations, is available.

This standard gives guidelines for an organization to plan, design, develop, operate, maintain, and improve an effective and efficient dispute-resolution process for complaints that have not been resolved by the organization.

ISO 10003 is applicable to:

a) complaints relating to the organization’s products and services, the complaints-handling process, or dispute-resolution process;
b) resolution of disputes arising from domestic or cross-border business activities, including those arising from electronic commerce.

ISO 10003 is intended for use by any organization regardless of its type or size, or the products and services it provides, and deals with:

1. guidance on determining when and how organizations can participate in dispute resolution;
2. guidance on the selection of providers and use of their services;
3. top management involvement in, and commitment to, dispute resolution and deployment of adequate resources within the organization;
4. the essentials for fair, suitable, transparent and accessible dispute resolution;
5. guidance on management of an organization’s participation in dispute resolution;
6. monitoring, evaluating and improving the dispute-resolution process.

ISO 10003:2018

ISO 10003 is particularly aimed at dispute resolution between an organization and individuals purchasing or using products and services for personal or household purposes, or small businesses.

The standard does not apply to the resolution of other types of disputes, such as employment disputes. It does not apply to complaints handling within an organization.

You can order the 36-page standard from www.ANSI.org for $185 (member price is $148.00). Or, it can be ordered from www.ISO.org for about $158.00.

Table of Contents

1. Scope
2. Normative references
3. Terms and definitions

4. Guiding principles
4.1 General
4.2 Commitment
4.3 Responsiveness
4.4 Information integrity
4.5 Accountability
4.6 Consent to participate
4.7 Accessibility
4.8 Suitability
4.9 Fairness
4.10 Competence
4.11 Timeliness
4.12 Confidentiality
4.13 Transparency
4.14 Agreement
4.15 Capacity
4.16 Improvement
4.17 Customer-focused approach

5. Dispute-resolution framework
5.1 Context of the organization
5.2 Commitment
5.3 Dispute-resolution policy
5.4 Top management responsibility

6. Planning, design, and development
6.1 General
6.2 Objectives
6.3 Activities
6.4 Resources

7. Operation
7.1 General
7.2 Complaint referral
7.3 Receipt of dispute notice
7.4 Formulation of the organization
7.5 Resolution of dispute
7.6 Implementation of resolution
7.7 Closing the file

8. Maintenance and improvement
8.1 Monitoring
8.2 Analysis and evaluation
8.3 Evaluation of the satisfaction with the dispute-resolution process
8.4 Management review
8.5 Continual improvement

Annex A: Guidance on dispute-resolution methods
Annex B: Interrelationship of this document with ISO 10001, ISO 10002, and ISO 10004
Annex C: Guidance on consent to participate
Annex D: Guidance on accessibility
Annex E: Guidance on suitability
Annex F: Guidance on fairness
Annex G: Guidance on competence
Annex H: Guidance on timeliness
Annex I: Guidance on transparency
Annex J: Guidance on selecting providers
Annex K: Guidance on dispute-resolution policy
Annex L: Guidance on elements of design for dispute resolution
Annex M: Dispute resolution flowchart