Management System Standards - Part 6 - Certification


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Management System Standards - Part 1 - Overview

Management System Standards - Part 2 - Common Structure

Management System Standards - Part 3 - Two Free Standards

Management System Standards - Part 4 - Interaction

Management System Standards - Part 5 - Implementation


The overriding reason that an organisation establishes and operates a management system, which conforms to a management system standard, is to achieve, and maintain, accredited certification to the standard as follows.

The organisation establishes the management system.

The organisation operates the management system.

The organisation engages an accredited Conformity Assessment Body (CAB) [often also referred to as a Certification Body (CB)].

The CAB assesses the management system against the management system standard.

If the CAB assesses that it conforms to the standard, the CAB issues a certificate that the management system conforms to the standard.

The stages of certification are as follows.


INITIAL CERTIFICATION

Stage 1 Audit

The CAB assesses whether the documentation of the management system conforms with the requirements for documentation of the management system standard. Although this is a check of documentation, it will usually reveal any inadequacies in the operation of the management system that must be rectified before the Stage 2 Audit.

Stage 2 Audit

The CAB assesses whether the organisation operates the management system in accordance with the requirements of the management system standard. If the Stage 2 Audit reveals any major non-conformities, they must be satisfactorily addressed.

Certification

The CAB issues the organisation with a certificate to the management system standard, which is valid for three years.


SUBSEQUENT ANNUAL SURVEILLANCE AND THREE-YEARLY RECERTIFICATION

Year 1 Surveillance Audit

One year later the CAB assesses, against some parts of the management system standard, whether the organisation continues to operate the management system in accordance with the requirements of the standard.

Year 2 Surveillance Audit

Another year later the CAB assesses, against the remaining parts of the management system standard, whether the organisation continues to operate the management system in accordance with the requirements of the standard.

Recertification Audit

Three years after the initial certification, or a subsequent re-certification, the CAB assesses, against all of the management system standard, whether the organisation continues to operate the management system in accordance with the requirements of the standard.

Recertification

The CAB reissues the organisation with a certificate to the management system standard, which is valid for three years.

The Year 1 Surveillance Audit, Year 2 Surveillance Audit and Recertification Audit repeat on a three year cycle, to maintain certification, to the management system standard.


GUIDES

The following document gives reasons for achieving accredited certification to management system standards.

Why Certify to Management System Standards

The following document describes the international framework that governs accreditation and certification to standards.

Accreditation and Certification