Standards and certification

Standards and certification

Which ISO standards can be certified?

NBN does not deal with certification. You will find clear information on management standards and certification on the ISO website:

In principle, a standard is never drafted for the purpose of being certified (see explanations about ISO certification). In theory, a standard is applied voluntarily, but legal and/or contractual requirements may make compliance with a standard mandatory. However, certification serves as a marketing or sales tool: companies with a higher number of certificates have a competitive edge in the market. If you wish to develop certification activities, you must be accredited for that purpose. The Belgian government department responsible for the accreditation of certification bodies is  BELAC. If you have questions regarding certification, you should contact this department to get answers, as it is the most knowledgeable. A certification body will have to meet one or more ‘ISO/IEC conformity assessment’ standards (CASCO standards). 

I would like my organisation to become a standard certification body/auditor.

An organisation seeking to develop certification activities must be accredited for this purpose. In Belgium, BELAC is the competent public body for the accreditation of companies. You will find more explanations (only available in Dutch and French) on the subject on the BELAC website, which has compiled information on the accredited organisations. The following types of conformity assessment bodies are currently listed on the website: 

  • Testing laboratories (TEST)
  • Environmental management certification bodies (EMS)
  • Persons certification bodies (PERS)
  • Product certification bodies (PROD)
  • Quality management certification bodies (QMS)
  • Calibration laboratories (CAL)
  • Inspection bodies (INSP)
  • Medical biology laboratories (MED)
  • Environmental auditors (EMAS)
  • Interlaboratory testing organisers (PT)
  • Reference material manufacturers (RM)
  • Validation and verification bodies (GHG)

On the ISO website, you will find explanations on the subject of certification that may be useful. A distinction is made between standards for which certification is necessary and those for which it isn’t.