Choosing the right certification body for your ISO 9001 approval

With so many certification bodies to choose from, it can be difficult to make a decision about which one is best for your organisation.

To help you make that all important decision, we’ve put together our seven top tips on what you should consider when making your decision.

1. Accreditation

If you want to be sure that your ISO 9001:2015 certificate will be accepted universally, it is important to choose a body that is accredited by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) or another national accreditation body to deliver ISO 9001:2015 assessment services.

This is your assurance that the certification body you choose to work with has been assessed against internationally recognised standards to prove competence, impartiality and performance capability against the requirements of ISO 9001:2015.

2. Globally recognised

Even if you only provide services and products within the UK market, who knows what the future holds? Choosing a certification body that can support you now and your future aspirations makes good commercial sense.

Opportunities for export, to forge alliances with overseas based trading partners or even setting up offices in new international markets, it could benefit you from partnering with a certification body that is globally recognised to deliver a consistent ISO 9001:2015 service internationally.

3. Industry experience

Has the certification body got a track record in your market sector to deliver ISO 9001:2015 services? Ask them for information on other clients they approve to ISO 9001:2015 in your sector and if you’re still not sure, ask for a recommendation from one of their clients. This is particularly important if you are in a high-risk sector.

4. Recognition

A good name goes a long way. By choosing a certification body that has a recognised brand to deliver quality services to ISO 9001 in the marketplace, it will help give assurance to your stakeholders that you mean business. Choose a body whose name is well recognised with the people that you want to work with.

5. Ease of communication

Need some answers to an ISO 9001:2015 technical query? Need to check when your next visit date is? Want to discuss changing the scope of approval or exploring certification to a new standard? You need to be assured that you can get hold of the right person at the end of the phone to answer your queries quickly.

6. The right assessor

To get the best value from your ISO 9001:2015 assessment visits, make sure you will be allocated an assessor or auditor that has experience of auditing ISO 9001 in your industry sector. By doing so, your assessor will be able to add value by making appropriate recommendations to improve your business.

7. Cost

As organisations are looking to save money and reduce costs, this is increasingly becoming a priority and often a deciding factor when choosing an ISO 9001:2015 certification body. But more often than not it isn’t always clear what the total cost of ISO 9001 certification will be upfront and you may end up paying more than you originally expected.

To help you work out the real cost of your certification, we’ve created this comparison table. Simply download and populate the costs from up to four certification bodies.

Just remember, you are not tied to your certification body. If they aren't working for you, then look at transferring your business.

LRQA can offer you a free, no-obligation review of your needs and should you choose to make the move, we can make it as smooth as possible.

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Call 0800 783 2179 or complete our ISO 9001 enquiry form.