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Implementing ISO 27001

Implementing ISO 27001 takes time and effort, but it isn’t as expensive or as difficult as you may think. There are different ways of going about implementation with varying costs.

We’ve trained more than 7,000 professionals on ISMS (information security management system) implementations and audits worldwide and helped more than 600 organizations comply with and certify to ISO 27001. Our experience means we know exactly what it takes to make a project succeed.

Our ISO 27001 implementation bundles can help you reduce the time and effort required to implement an ISMS, and eliminate the costs of consultancy work, traveling, and other expenses.

View our ISO 27001 implementation bundles and pricing here >>​

Want a quick introduction to ISO 27001 implementation?

Download our free green paper: Implementing an ISMS, for a quick introduction to ISO 27001 and learn about our nine-step approach to implementing an ISO 27001-compliant ISMS.

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ISO 27001 implementation checklist

Familiarize yourself with ISO 27001 and ISO 27002


Before you can reap the many benefits of ISO 27001, you first need to familiarize yourself with the Standard and its core requirements. The ISO/IEC 27001:2013, ISO/IEC 27002:2013, and ISO 27000:2018 standards will serve as your main points of reference.

Assemble a project team and initiate the project


You will first need to appoint a project leader to manage the project (if it will be someone other than yourself). Second, you will need to embark on an information-gathering exercise to review senior-level objectives and set information security goals. Third, you should develop a project plan and project risk register.


This toolkit includes a range of project tools that will help you tackle the ISMS.

The Lead Implementer training course teaches you how to implement an ISMS from beginning to end, including how to overcome common pitfalls and challenges.

Conduct a gap analysis


A gap analysis helps you determine which areas of the organization aren’t compliant with ISO 27001, and what you need to do to become compliant.


This toolkit includes an ISO 27001:2013 and ISO 27002:2013 gap analysis tool that will help you assess your organization against the Standard’s requirements. 

A specialist, in-person review of your current information security posture against the requirements of ISO/IEC 27001:2013.

Scope the ISMS


Scoping requires you to decide which information assets to ring-fence and protect. Doing this correctly is essential, because a scope that’s too big will escalate the time and cost of the project, and a scope that’s too small will leave your organization vulnerable to risks that weren’t considered.


Find out how to scope the ISMS effectively by attending the definitive ISO 27001 Lead Implementer training course.

Initiate high-level policy development and other key ISO 27001 documentation


You should set out high-level policies for the ISMS that establish roles and responsibilities, and set up a continual improvement process. Additionally, you need to consider how to raise ISMS project awareness through both internal and external communication.


This documentation toolkit will save you weeks of work trying to develop all the required policies and procedures.

Undertake a risk assessment


Risk assessments are the core of any ISMS and involve five important aspects: establishing a risk management framework, identifying, analyzing, and evaluating risks, and selecting risk treatment options.

The risk assessment also helps identify whether your organization’s controls are necessary and cost-effective. 


An ISO 27001-compliant information security management system (ISMS) developed and maintained according to risk acceptance/rejection criteria is an extremely useful management tool, but the risk assessment process is often the most difficult and complex aspect to manage, and it often requires external assistance.

Undertake error-proof risk assessments with the leading ISO 27001 risk assessment tool, vsRisk, which includes a database of risks and the corresponding ISO 27001 controls, in addition to an automated framework that enables you to conduct the risk assessment accurately and effectively. 

Select and apply controls


Controls should be applied to manage or reduce risks identified in the risk assessment. ISO 27001 requires organizations to compare any controls against its own list of best practices, which are contained in Annex A. Creating documentation is the most time-consuming part of implementing an ISMS.


The documentation toolkit provides a full set of the required policies and procedures, mapped against the controls of ISO 27001, ready for you to customize and implement.

vsRisk includes a full set of controls from Annex A of ISO 27001 in addition to controls from other leading frameworks.

Develop risk documentation


The RTP (risk treatment plan) and SoA (Statement of Applicability) are key documents required for an ISO 27001 compliance project. 

The SoA lists all the controls identified in ISO 27001, details whether each control has been applied, and explains why it was included or excluded. The RTP describes the steps to be taken to deal with each risk identified in the risk assessment.


vsRisk provides all the documentation you need to satisfy auditor requirements.

Conduct staff awareness training


Human error has been widely demonstrated as the weakest link in cybersecurity. Therefore, all employees should receive regular training to increase their awareness of information security issues and the purpose of the ISMS.


E-learning courses are a cost-effective solution for improving general staff awareness about information security and the ISMS. 

Assess, review, and conduct an internal audit


ISO 27001 requires regular audits and testing to be carried out. This is to ensure that the controls are working as they should be and that the incident response plans are functioning effectively. Top management should review the performance of the ISMS at least annually.


Our lead auditor course gives you the skills to successfully undertake or lead an ISMS audit project. 

Opt for a certification audit


If you opt for certification, the certification body you use should be properly accredited by a recognized national accreditation body and a member of the International Accreditation Forum. 

Your chosen certification body will review your management system documentation, check that you have implemented appropriate controls, and conduct a site audit to test the procedures in practice.

Achieve ISO 27001 certification with IT Governance

Backed by the team that led the implementation of the world’s first ISO 27001-compliant ISMS, we’ve helped more than 600 clients achieve ISO 27001 certification and compliance, and we guarantee certification.

ISO 27001 implementation bundles

Many organizations fear that implementing ISO 27001 will be costly and time-consuming. Our implementation bundles can help you reduce the time and effort required to implement an ISMS, and eliminate the costs of consultancy work, traveling, and other expenses.

IT Governance offers four different implementation bundles that have been expertly created to meet the unique needs of your organization, offering the most comprehensive mix of ISO 27001 tools and resources currently available.

Speak to an expert

Our qualified ISO 27001 experts are ready to offer you practical advice about the best approach to take for implementing an ISO 27001 project and discuss different options to suit your budget and business needs.

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