Introduction to ISO 17021 and its mandatory procedures

Posted by charleswilson on November 6th, 2019

The ISO/IEC 17021-1:2015 - Conformity assessment was published on 2015, and it is replaced with ISO/IEC 17021:2011 with identical title and will result in the requirements for certification bodies to implement modifications within their management systems and processes to maintain accreditation.

The agreed International Accreditation Forum has decide a transition period for ISO 17021-1 : 2015 certification is two years , which means that all certification bodies management systems must have successfully transferred to the new standard within two years from the publication in year 2017.

ISO 17021 is a standards series that set out requirements for organizations which provide certificates of conformity to all types of management systems.The ISO 17021 standards are used by accreditation bodies to evaluate the procedures that certification bodies have in place to make sure that they are impartial and the results of their assessments are consistent.

There are several sample ISO 17021 documents are available in market to get ISO 17021 Certification which covers covers sample copy of mandatory procedures covering all the details like purpose, scope, responsibility, how this ISO 17021 procedures are followed as well as list of exhibits, reference documents and formats.

Following are the list of Mandatory ISO 17021 procedures:

  1.        Procedure for document and data control
  2.        Procedure for record management
  3.        Procedure for Internal audit
  4.        Procedure for Corrective actions
  5.        Procedure for management review
  6.        Procedure for Human resources
  7.        Procedure for complaints and appeals
  8.        Procedure for Marketing, contract and contract review
  9.        Procedure for audit with steps of planning, conducting and reporting
  10.    Procedure for Certificate issue, suspension and withdrawal

Here are the Accreditation steps for achieving ISO 17021 Certification:

  • Micro-level survey for each and every management system of the certification bodies and preparation of detail Gap Analysis report,
  • ISO/IEC 17021 based on detail study of all activities there is requirement for Preparation of applicable documents of the certifying bodies, such as;
  1. ISO 17021 Quality Manual,
  2. Quality Procedures for ISO/IEC 17021 accreditation (mandatory procedures required by the ISO 17021 standard),
  3. Standard Operating Procedure  for getting certification of various activities management system used in the certification,
  4. Some formats are available to establish the objective evidence of implementation and to ensure control over all the management system.
  • Preparation of Quality Assurance Plan for maintaining and assuring quality of services provided to its customers,
  • ISO 17021 training to all levels of employees within the certification bodies,
  • Help in effective implementation of system by periodic visit till accreditation,
  • Conduct internal audit for ISO 17021 system to check readiness for the accreditation,
  • Conduct management review meeting in presence of Top Management to guide the certification bodies for effective implementation of all the issues related to inspection,
  • Development of policies, as required by the standard.
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