The United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) is the national accreditation body for the UK. It operates under a Memorandum of Understanding with the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), and is a non-profit-distributing company limited by guarantee.
Accreditation determines the technical competence and integrity of organisations offering conformity assessment services such as testing, certification, inspection and calibration.
How can accreditation help Trade Associations and their members?
Accredited testing, inspection and certification are increasingly being specified by Regulators, and public sector and private sector organisations.
This page provides you and your members with information on how to:
• Find an accredited provider
• How to check if a certificate from overseas is covered by accreditation
• How to gain accreditation
• Find out more information on how to develop an accreditation scheme for your Trade Association
• How to work for UKAS as technical assessor or as a permanent member of staff
Find an accredited provider
Using a UKAS accredited supplier for your testing, inspection or certification needs is an essential tool for decision-making and risk management.
Organisations can save time and money by selecting an accredited and therefore competent supplier. Accredited testing, inspection and certification carried out in compliance with best practices can limit product failure and down time, and control manufacturing costs. Government guidance on the use of accreditation is available on Gov.uk.
How to check if a certificate or test report from overseas is covered by accreditation
Products sourced from overseas market may be accompanied by an accredited certificate. Two organisations (ILAC for testing and inspection, IAF for certification) manage accreditation on a global basis and have established mutual multi-recognition agreements which ensure that test data, certificates and inspection reports are accepted globally. The ILAC and IAF websites provide links to information to determine the accreditation status and scope.
To access a directory of ILAC recognised accreditation bodies (equivalent to UKAS) and links to their databases of accredited organisations, click here.
To access a directory of IAF recognised accreditation bodies (equivalent to UKAS), click here.
How to gain accreditation
The majority of UKAS accredited organisations are small businesses just like yours. Gaining accreditation sets you apart from the competition, and enables you to compete with larger organisations. It will open doors to new markets where accreditation is a ‘passport to trade’. In terms of the ‘bottom line’, it can deliver efficiencies and improve profit.
If you are interested in finding out how to become accredited we recommend that you visit the UKAS ‘Route to Accreditation’
Quality assurance schemes for Trade Associations
You may be seeking to introduce a quality assurance or certification scheme for your members to allow them to differentiate themselves in the market. UKAS operates a new product development programme, enabling us to develop innovative ways to reflect and serve the market sectors in which we operate. More information is available on the UKAS website.
Career opportunities with UKAS
UKAS is actively recruiting across a range of specialist disciplines including the forensics, food chemists, healthcare, medical laboratories and construction sectors. UKAS employs independent technical assessors, as well as full-time assessment managers.
To find out more about working at UKAS and to review current career opportunities visit our careers area of the website.
Contact us to speak or email us directly.