Article on concerns over price pressure effects on to Registrars

Sidney Vianna

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#1
Mr. Randy Dougherty, director of accreditation with the ANSI-ASQ National Accreditation Board - ANAB - has graciously agreed for me to post a recent article he wrote about concerns over the effects of extreme price pressure being experienced by the Certification Bodies, around the World.

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Sidney Vianna

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Tooting my own horn

From the attached article
It’s natural for any company to press for lower costs and better deals. However, competitive pressures are so great now among certification bodies that auditor times are being reduced to unacceptable levels. This results in an audit that is superficial and inadequate. Even the best auditors cannot perform well without sufficient time. The result? Few audit findings, and even fewer audit findings of true value to the organization. The organization has a perception that the audit provides less value and benefit.
Therefore, the organization presses for lower cost or, even worse, embarks on a competitive bid for a new low-cost certification body. This causes quotes for even less auditor time and ultimately the certification may no longer provide confidence that the organization will do what it says it will. This results in another bad consequence: Specifiers and purchasers lose confidence in certification. The certification industry may very well be letting competitive pressures destroy the certification business.
Sorry for tooting my own horn, but I see eerie similarities about a long term concern that I have been voicing since 1994 and Marc captured in a post in 1999 when I stated:

my personal opinion is that the Accreditation Agencies need to enhance their "policing activities". Failure to do so might send this process in a downward spiral where in order to remain competitive, registrars might compromise their services which would lead to a decrease in confidence of 3rd party certificates. If 3rd party certificates bear no or little value, registrants will most certainly seek the cheapest, easiest and fastest certificate, feeding back to the vicious loop..
I am still hopeful for a “correction” in the Certification Business. Otherwise, we might make ourselves irrelevant to the market we (some of us) are trying to serve.
 
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M

Madfox

#3
Price pressure

It seems the "pressure" is beginning to be vented via day rates, and I'm starting to see it happen right now!

Regarding the previous post (above), I've rarely seen an initial audit run tight because of the number of days scheduled. Where I see "corners cut" to get the audit done is on the surveillance audits.

That said, I was speaking with an auditor this week (no affiliation with me at all) who was on-site for a re-cert audit. The company had two sites, one being an additional production facility of approx. 40 employess (under the HQ cert). That site "needed" four days and the owner was livid!!! Can you blame him/her?
 
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