Comparison of the Operation of Accreditation Bodies in Europe
In cooperation with the German accreditation body (DAkkS), the Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung (BAM) conducted a study, which compares the functioning of accreditation bodies in Europe. The eight participating national accreditation bodies discussed during a workshop on the 16th / 17th October 2017 in Berlin the results of the first comparison round. The study aims to identify and promote "best practices" and to improve the dialogue among each other.
While the European co-operation for Accreditation (EA) regularly checks whether the accreditation bodies of the Member States comply with the relevant normative requirements, the peer evaluation does not consider how efficient, effective and future-oriented the individual national organizations are working. This gap should be now closed by the BAM-DAkkS project.
The basis for the comparative study is the Business Excellence model of the European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM). It provides a holistic view on organizations without focusing on key business figures. For this purpose, the participating accreditation bodies systematically analyse the degree of "process maturity" of selected processes.
The two-day workshop offered participants the opportunity to compare relevant data and processes on the basis of the project results and to discuss useful changes for their structures processes. In addition to Germany, the national accreditation bodies from the UK, Latvia, the Netherlands, Norway, Austria, Sweden and Spain participated in the project. As important part of the national and European quality infrastructure accreditation bodies contribute significantly to the safety of products and services as well as to the transnational trade.