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UKAS Accreditation

“ISO accreditation can only be obtained (in the UK) from United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS)... any organisation therefore that is suggesting it is accredited when they are not is likely to be guilty of an offence under the Business Protection from Misleading Marketing Regulations 2008.”

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) clarifies non-accredited ISO certification (March 2012). More Info »

Who are UKAS?

The United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) is the sole national accreditation body recognised by government to assess, against internationally agreed standards, organisations that provide certification, testing, inspection and calibration services.

UKAS make sure that the body who issues your ISO certificate (e.g. BSI, LRQA, VCA) have been assessed against internationally recognised standards to demonstrate their competence, impartiality and performance capability.

For more information please visit UKAS.

Why is having a UKAS-accredited certificate important?

Once you have implemented either ISO 9001 or ISO 14001, you can have this independently certified by a third party, which demonstrates to your customers that the system really does meet the standard. When choosing which body to certify your ISO system, you should think carefully about how qualified they are to do this. Choosing a UKAS-accredited certification body gives you peace of mind that you have chosen a competent body. This reduces the risk of selecting an incompetent evaluator and paying for, or more seriously, acting upon invalid results.

A full list of UKAS-accredited certification bodies is available on UKAS.

Is having a UKAS-accredited certificate compulsory?

The simple answer is no. You do not need to have your ISO standard certified at all, but doing so by a UKAS-accredited certification body means that it has been independently verified by a competent body. An increasing number of customers are insisting on UKAS-accredited certification.

Having it certified by a non-UKAS-accredited certification body is perfectly legal, but you run the risk of dealing with a company who may not be competent. More importantly, you may end up spending money on a scheme which your customers do not recognise.

What are the benefits of a certified ISO management system?

Having your ISO 9001 or ISO 14001 system independently certified by a UKAS-accredited certification body has many benefits:

Is it recognised outside the UK?

ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 are international standards, and certificates from UKAS-accredited certification bodies are recognised throughout the world.


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