A2LA recognizes the very close relationship between certification, testing, and inspection yet understands that certification includes a variety of activities not covered in testing laboratory or inspection body accreditation alone. Certification includes products (e.g. services, software, hardware, and processed materials) and processes, including the examination of test reports for compliance with specified criteria - both domestic and international. A certification body which is engaged in testing, inspection, measurement or sampling work may apply for accreditation for this work concurrently with its application for accreditation of its certification activities.
Accreditation is based on the assessment of performance of a certification body including (as appropriate) procedures, staff competence, inspection, review of product acceptability, and reporting.
General criteria for A2LA accreditation of product certification bodies are contained in ISO/IEC Guide 65:1996, General Requirements for Bodies Operating Product Certification Systems and the IAF Guidance on the Application of ISO/IEC Guide 65:1996 (IAF GD 5). Additional criteria may be needed depending on particular user needs (e.g. FCC, RVIA, WaterSense).
A2LA accreditation attests that a product certification body has demonstrated:
- that it is competent to perform specific product certifications or specific types of product certifications; and
- that its quality system is documented, is fully operational, and addresses and conforms to all elements of ISO/IEC Guide 65:1996 and
IAF GD 5; and
- that it is operating in accordance with the required quality system; and
- that it conforms to any additional requirements established by A2LA.
It is available to all Conformity Assessment Bodies (CABs) providing certification and A2LA welcomes applications for the accreditation of all types of certifications
The full application package includes the following documents:
- Applicant Information
- Conditions for Accreditation
- Supporting Information
- Fee Structure
- Application Materials Checklist
Related documents include:
- Product Certification Body Accreditation Requirements
- ISO Guide 65 Checklist (please fill out the ISO Guide 65 Confirmation Fax Form and fax back to A2LA headquarters
- I110 Interim Recognition of Product Certification Bodies for the EPA WaterSense Program
If you have any questions regarding this program, please contact Rob Miller at 301 644 3239.