All businesses, no matter how big or small or what industry they operate in, aim for some form of certification. This is the ultimate mark of quality and professionalism. However, with a lot of certification bodies to choose from, it can be difficult to know what you should be looking for. One place to start is by making sure that the certification body you use is UKAS approved. This is something you simply cannot afford to overlook. Here are the reasons why our Consultants will always recommend this
What is UKAS?
UKAS stands for the United Kingdom Accreditation Service. It is the only government recognised national accreditation body in Britain. It has been designed to evaluate the competence of all organisations that supply services relating to certification, calibration, inspection, and testing. If a certification body meets their standards, they will then be accredited. If a business has reached this status, it means that they have the ability to deliver results while being reliable, impartial and competent. Therefore, if you choose a UKAS accredited certification body, you can be certain of the highest level of quality.
UKAS is a non-profit organisation, meaning their sole purpose is to ensure the certification industry is regulated properly and high standards are achieved. This gives you ultimate peace of mind. It is true that non-UKAS approved certification body prices may be lower in some instances but this is because they are not bound by the same guidelines put in place by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service. Nevertheless, this means that you are taking a massive risk, as the quality of product testing and auditing quality will vary. And, if the company has not sought UKAS certification, it is a pretty good indicator that the quality could possibly be lower.
Why it matters
There are a lot of non-accredited companies that offer their service on a no certificate no fee basis. This may seem great on the surface. However, what it means is that a certificate is barely ever refused. This does not say a lot for the quality of the awarding body if they are simply allowing anyone to achieve their certification. It goes completely against the international standard that UKAS adheres to, as they do not have to follow any regulatory constraints, and thus offer little assurance in terms of accountability, impartiality, or integrity.
So, how can you tell if an organisation is UKAS certified? Well, all certified businesses are allowed to use the Royal Crown symbol. You simply need to look out for this. Alternatively, you can head to the UKAS website at www.ukas.com, and you will find a list of all certified bodies under the ‘Accredited Bodies’ tab on the homepage.
How can we help you?
If you are in need of assistance with any aspect of a management system, need help to find a UKAS approved certificaiton body or are looking for general advice and support to maintain standards, call 01484 666160 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll be happy to talk it over with you.
You can also download the answers to our frequently asked questions by clicking here