Competent EnMS operation with solid documentation leads the organisation to ISO 50001 conformity and voluntarily declare its compliance.
The organisation then can decide if the certification is strategically beneficial for their business.

We still see a lot of attentions being placed on certification when ISO 50001, International Standard for Energy Management System (EnMS) is talked about. On the other hand seldom we hear about the importance of documentation that forms the fundamental part of enhancing EnMS operation conforming to the ISO 50001 requirements.

When you go through the ISO 50001 requirements (which is also a document!!), other than specifically using the word “document”, you will recognise all clauses, sections and sub-sections are stated with the words: record, review, maintain, monitor, measure, analyse, determine, implement, evaluate, ensure, define, and so on, which indirectly suggest in order to comply with the requirements can only be valid with energy performance improvement actions supported by proper documentation. It is apparent that for organisation to continually improve energy performance and to sustain the superiority of achieving improvement, it requires appropriate documents that ensure the inclusion of the ISO 50001 contents.

Changing from "ISO = Certification" thinking to ISO 50001 "Self-Declaration" approach

Since the time that ISO 50001 was introduced a year and a half ago, its certification reported had not been as intense as we anticipated considering what benefits that ISO 50001 could bring to the energy user business world.

One reason for that we believe is there is yet a strong trace of subjective impression among energy user conceiving “certification” is an only approach to be recognised as ISO compliant organisation. However, the ISO 50001 International Standard for EnMS is much more practical and provides opportunity utilising the essence for the betterment of energy users’ business output.

ISO 50001 Standard (ISO 50001:2011(E)) in the "Introduction" clause, it states:
"This International Standard can be used for certification, registration and self-declaration of an organization's EnMS."

Additionally, in Cause 1 "Scope", it further elaborates:
“This International Standard is applicable to any organization wishing to ensure that it conforms to its stated energy policy and wishing to demonstrate this to others, such conformity being confirmed either by means of self-evaluation and self-declaration of conformity, or by certification of the energy management system by an external organization.”

For demonstrating the ISO 50001 conformity, "Self-Declaration" is recognised as equal to "Certification" as one of options. If the energy user organisations are confident about their EnMS operation, they can demonstrate their own rule and announce "ISO 50001 Class Self-Declaration" for recognition. With ISO 50001, it is time for energy users to review if the "certification" is the effective strategy to gain the essence of EnMS: continual improvement of energy performance.

Importance of establishing key management documents for ISO 50001 "Self-Declaration"

Saying is easy, but on reality energy users have to clear one more hurdle in order to gain ISO 50001 Class EnMS operation: That is documentation. Normally EnMS conscious organisation is equipped with necessary procedural and record documents. For ISO 50001 Class documentation, it requires documentation structure as shown below.

From the structure, it is apparent with the available procedural and record documents, it requires competent EnMS management documents created by the top management or the management representative person responsible for EnMS operation. The feature of ISO 50001 is the practical guideline to implement effective EnMS operation participated by entire workforce engaged in PDCA: "P" for Plan (Develop plan based on energy review exercise); "D" for Do implement the plan; "C" for Check as evaluating the progress of implementation and degree of achievement to the targets; and "A" for Act to what is necessary for organisation whether to maintain the level of improvement of further pursuing improvement.
The elements to capture the feature can be listed as follows:

  1. EnMS operation implementation proclamation and leadership by the top management
  2. Establish Energy Policy
  3. Establish EnMS operation organisation
  4. Establish a set of rules for EnMS operation tailored to the organisation (EnMS Charter)
  5. Implement energy review
  6. Identify EnPI to set baseline and target
  7. Identify Energy Conservation Opportunity (ECO)
  8. Establish and implement EnMS action plan based on the energy performance improvement targets and ECO items
  9. Improvement practice based on energy monitoring and data collection/analysis procedures
  10. Continual improvement action including operational/technical problem solving procedures
  11. Improve competence of all workforces
  12. Exercise internal and external communication on the organisation's sustainability drive
  13. Execute internal audit superior to the external audit
  14. Introduce a system conforming to legal and other EnMS related requirements
  15. Form collaborative relations with supplier to ensure effective EnMS operation
  16. Establish documentation to implement and sustain effective and superior EnMS operation
When examining the above elements closely, one would soon appreciate documentation is invaluable to all elements. For a business operator, in order to implement EnMS operation that brings expected results, establishing the fundamental management documentation is unavoidable requirement. When examining the ISO 50001 requirements an item to an item, in order to comply with the requirement defined in each item, associated document must be in place to demonstrate the conformity.

We have created an analysis table "Documents subject of ISO 50001 requirements" demonstrating applicable documents per requirement item. Those of you who are interested please download

Examining the analysis table, you will immediately notice that in order to comply with the ISO 50001 requirements, there are 12 key documents to be considered. Conversely if the documentation is not up to the standard, the organisation is left with an upfront risk in the view of sustainability (CSR). Top managements must realise in the early stage how big the risk that may infringe upon the sustainability business practice and damage organisation's image.

This is the background that EnMS-Doc Associates developed and offering the M333 Set Menu #101 “all 12 key management documents in a set” as our feature offering.

                                                    "M333 Set menue #1 All key 12 management documents in the set"

All 12 documents are with high degree of completeness, ready to be used by EnMS operation only requiring minor adjustment to establish as the organisation’s proprietary EnMS management documents complying with ISO 50001. Furthermore, the feature of these management documents is that they will convert organisation’s existing procedural documents and records related to EnMS operation into ISO 50001 compatible documents. We urge you to consider.

ISO 50001 "Self-Declaration" benefits for energy user organisation

Once again we bring you back to the topic "Self-Declaration" after agreeing the importance of documentation for the management system standard. The biggest differentiator of ISO 50001 EnMS to other management systems is to verify and quantitatively evaluate the savings as the result of energy performance improvement activities. This is the area the audit activities by other management system cannot cover. With this point in mind, many say to judge the conformity of ISO 50001 is more appropriate by the self-evaluation performed by the energy user organisation by itself knowing the business of their own better than the third party assessor. We even hear a reverse thinking "For ISO 50001, it is time for energy user organisation to audit the auditors". Ultimately ISO 50001 requirements can make "Self-Declaration" receiving higher recognition and value than its "certification".

For energy users, we sincerely recommend that the key 12 management documents are established to ensure the ISO 50001 competent level of "Self-Declaration".


Our mission #1

To broaden association globally in promoting energy performance improvement with ISO 50001 Class EnMS.

Our mission #2

To disseminate importance of documentation for proper implementation of ISO 50001 Class EnMS operation.

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"All 12 documents in a set" Economical price on sale making ISO 50001 "self declaration" within reach.

Home pages we follow

Helping companies wanting to explore Japanese market with an objective of susatainablility business development.

We are closely following the development of the UK leading EnMS solution software.

Open source economic paperless EnMS operating system is very useful to make full use of our EnMS management documents.

We are following EnMS and Sustainability progress in Ireland thru SEAI.

We are following the progress of the SEP programs promoted by USCEEM.

We are keeping our eyes on the GSEP development under the CEM

We learn a lot from this ISO dedicated publisher website
(only in Japanese)。

We benefit a lot from real time information blog pages provided by Mr. Nakao (only in Japanese)

Permission to use extracts from ISO 50001 was provided by Standards Council of Canada. No further reproduction is permitted without prior written approval from Standards Council of Canada.