In late spring we meet with ANAB at their headquarters in Milwaukee to kick off the process of becoming an ANAB accredited registrar. Our hope was to issue ISO 14001, OHSAS 18001 and ISO 50001 accredited certificates to business in the upper Midwest. To our surprise during that meeting ANAB made it clear that consultancies are prohibited from accreditation as certification bodies. In ANABs eyes consultancies and anyone involved in governance of a consultancy is incapable of impartiality when performing ISO certification assessments.
We continue to believe that consultants make good auditors and vice versa. The financial audit sector (accounts) has operated successfully for many decades using the model to ensure competency of both auditors and consultants. We believe that ANAB, IAF and ISO’s conclusion that the threats to impartiality by consultancies are irreconcilable is not based in fact. We also believe that the threats of financial self-interest by ANAB accredited certification bodies are at least as potent as any threat to impartiality from a consultancy performing certification activities. This is because accredited CBs can (or should) only be allowed to generate revenue from one source, their certification activities.
We remain committed to trying to work with ANAB to find a way to offer ISO certification services in the upper Midwest but for the time being have placed this lower on our priority list of objectives.