Road to Management System Certification
Service Detail from DNV GL - Business Assurance North America
A Step-by-Step Guide
Certification, or registration, to a standard is the outcome of a successful assessment by an independent third party like DNV. Whether it is certification of a management system, a product, or a project, it provides evidence to customers of your compliance according to national or international standards. But where should you start? The certification process will vary slightly for different services, such as certification of management systems, products, or our greenhouse gas services. To walk you through the road to certification, we have chosen certification of a management system as an example. Third-Party Accredited Certification Third-party accredited certification of quality management systems is used to demonstrate compliance to ISO 9001. A third party is an organization with which you do not have a direct customer-supplier relationship. It is an independent organization that can look at your system with no bias. Third-party certification bodies are auditing organizations (called 'Registrars') that provide quality-auditing services to suppliers who wish to obtain ISO 9001 certification.
How do I prepare for accredited certification?
After having decided on the management system you wish to implement, there are certain steps to get you started Experience has shown that some simple tips, often seemingly trivial, have proven invaluable to companies seeking certification. As you set out, keep these in mind:
Make sure you begin the process with the right attitude.
• Have a complete understanding of the concept set forth in the standard, and use the standard as a guide template to define your management system
• Know what application and implications of the standard will mean to your company
• Use the standard as a tool for improvement
• Select your partner (certification body/registrar) carefully
What steps should I follow?
On the following pages you will find 10 general steps that will take you down the road to certification:
1. Obtain a standard
Obtain and read a copy of the standard to familiarize yourself with the requirements. Then you should decide if certification/registration makes good sense for your organization.
2. Review literature and software
There is a large amount of published information available that is designed to assist you in understanding and implementing a standard.
3. Assemble a team and define your strategy
The adoption of a management system needs to be the strategic decision of the whole organization. It is vital that your senior management is involved in the creation
process, in addition to a dedicated team to develop and implement your management system.
4. Determine training needs
Your team members responsible for implementing and maintaining the management system(s) will need to know the full details of the applicable standard(s). There is a wide range of courses, workshops, and seminars available designed to meet these needs. We provide a number of public training courses around the world. Contact your local DNV office for more information.
5. Review consultant options
Independent consultants will be able to advise you of a workable, realistic, and cost-effective strategy plan for implementation.