What Is Accreditation?

Certification is a formal, independent verification that a program or organization meets established quality standards and is capable of performing specific conformity assessment tasks. Conformity assessment tasks may include, but are not limited to, testing, inspection, or certification.

Generally, government regulatory agencies such as the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), or the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) require certification to verify the technical capabilities of organizations such as laboratories, inspection agencies, and certifications mechanism.

Organizations responsible for public safety and welfare (such as the construction department, hospitals, schools, police, and fire departments) also seek certification to prove their capabilities and reliability.

Certification has been used as an authoritative means of assessing organizations for more than 50 years and is now used by all major economies and many developing economies around the world.