Registrars Fight For Business - Methods they Use

Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
Staff member
Admin
#1
ARL wrote:
--> We are an affiliate of international company having leading role of
--> certification. Few of our competitors are writing to our certified
--> companies for the takeover (switchover) within the validity period
--> of our certificates at no charge and even no onsite audit, but
--> straight away issuance of new certificate. This is quite an
--> un-professional practice and damaging the overall purpose and
--> prestige of the ISO 9000 certifications.
-->
--> Comparing to this the financial audit companies are not allowed to
--> takeover the clients from their competitors without permission or
--> at least not at the cost lower to them.
-->
--> Do you know of any regulation or the procedure to handle this
--> problem.
-->
--> Thanks and regards...

I know of no regulation which addresses this issue.

I do not see this as comparable to a financial audit. A company typically has a pretty stable system if they've been registered for a few years. (Stable is up for definition, I agree). For example, TRW just took over LucasVerity (bought, whatever). While Lucas is now part of TRW, it will be keeping within its defined quality / manufacturing systems for quite a while as a gradual evolution is put into place. So even if a takeover (buy-out, whatever) is under way, unlike many company financial systems, most manufacturing systems will remain relatively stable.

I personally see where I would accept such a switch over with evidence based upon the company's audit schedule. Let's say a company is on a 6 month schedule with its registrar and is audited in January and July. They go through their July audit and decide to switch registrars - which happens in September.

The question is can the new registrar issue a certificate without visiting which is good through the remainder of the 6 month cycle. Risk factors considered, I (personally) would not see this as a problem. ISO9001 is not what it was even 5 years ago. I have been in companies which carried a current certificate which were blatantly outside the bounds of the requirements - I would have taken their cert away. This is particularly true with multi nationals which have many facilities and (my opinion) they really 'take it easy on' clients in order to keep the business. So - I feel if a company is midstream (has been registered for a couple of years) and can submit a years worth of audits (and related info) to show things are going well, issuing a certificate good until the January audit (from our example) would be a low risk.

However, I do not know what the convention is and I agree it is unprofessional. I will say business is more 'competitive' than in years past and I expect it to continue. Heck - Microsoft gave away (can you say FREE!) software (Explorer) in an attempt to crush a prospective competitor (Netscape). Ethics and professionalism are in the eye of the beholder more than ever before. 20 years ago in the US doctors did not advertise - as I remember (I could be wrong here) the AMA forbade advertising at one time. Slowly the 'professionalism' of some doctors eroded and doctors started advertising. Now it's very common place. Just like you, many doctors took this as an attack or raid on their 'customers' - many doctors still see advertising as unprofessional. Maybe they're right.

Maybe some of those who visit here who are closer to a registrar relationship can give their 2 cents worth.

[This message has been edited by Marc Smith (edited 19 September 1999).]
 
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barb butrym

Quite Involved in Discussions
#2
well....lets see...

URS, who I am affiliated with, takes each transfer individually. As you say, timing and past history is key. The standard is to do a cursury visit,... on site doc audit plus a look at CA/complaints and internal audits (and mgt review if time permits or if commitment needs to be verified based on the auditors observations)..... then based on the results of that review would continue with the 6 month schedule or schedule a full re-audit. They do not actively seek out transfers as a means to boost sales, but welcome them.
 
D

David Guffey

#3
As a client, if I were approached unsolicited by a registrar during my registration period, I would be livid. No matter their expertise or cost considerations, they would be toast in my book. I consider such a move totally lacking in professionalism. I will only hire those I consider professional. So, registrars out there, take that into consideration when you solicit.
 
D

David Guffey

#4
As a client, if I were approached unsolicited by a registrar during my registration period, I would be livid. No matter their expertise or cost considerations, they would be toast in my book. I consider such a move totally lacking in professionalism. I will only hire those I consider professional. So, registrars out there, take that into consideration when you solicit.
 
A

AllanJ

#6
Marc said:
Oh, my lord! a 1999er! Your considered opinion - Has anything changed?
No. Life goes on. Competition between registrars is even more fierce. Registrar performance still elicits too many horror stories. Too many firms just want the "paper on the wall" at the cheapest price.
 
D

darkgelap

#7
Certification bodies = consultant

Hi guys,

Right now in malaysia, we have a CB that is competing with consultants and other C.B for business. The have quated a lot of client guranteed certification.

their pricing included both consulting and audit. and this have give a big impact to my consulting business.

Question : Where can i complaint, Is UKAS sleeping?

p/s: the C.b is accredited by UKAS and SAC (Singapore accreditation council)

dont think i can mention the C.B names as i think only the branch in malaysia is doing this?

Regards,
Omar
 
A

AllanJ

#8
darkgelap said:
Hi guys,

Right now in malaysia, we have a CB that is competing with consultants and other C.B for business. The have quated a lot of client guranteed certification.

their pricing included both consulting and audit. and this have give a big impact to my consulting business.

Question : Where can i complaint, Is UKAS sleeping?

p/s: the C.b is accredited by UKAS and SAC (Singapore accreditation council)

dont think i can mention the C.B names as i think only the branch in malaysia is doing this?

Regards,
Omar
Omar, why should you bother complaining to UKAS or any other accreditation body? Are they not paid to do their own work? And if they are not effective at it do they not risk the reputation and prospects for that entire registration industry, and their own employment prospects?

In business, people who will not do their own work in obtaining pertinent market intelligence are asleep. And if they expect others to do it for them, for free, they are lazy or apathetic about their business. Whatever fate has in store for them, they need only blame themselves.

And, if any C.B. does wish to act as "poacher and gamekeeper", or ignore the "rules" and "mores" of their business sector, people such as yourself who are (rightly) appalled by their lack of ethical conduct need only resolve NOT to award them any business. When enough potential customers such as you do that, the market does the rest. (God Bless Adam Smith's timeless perception.)

While you might not wish to publicly accuse the C.B. of the conduct you (and most at the Cove would deplore), you might be tempted to post a simple statement of opinion such as, "In my opinion, if you might have the XXX C.B. as your potential C.B., you may wish to consider others before making a final decision".
 
S

SilverHawk

#9
CB-Consultant

Omar, speak up! Say it loud and clear!

Make the statement proud and loud, Omar. If you do not have the facts right, you may as well lie low under the coconut shells. (Like the katak bawah tempurong!).

As a consultant, I am sure you know where and whom to direct the complaints to. Or is it that you do not know the roles and responsibility of IAF???. You are not doing any justice to the quality world without speaking out!
Let hear it out!
 

Wes Bucey

Quite Involved in Discussions
#10
Apples or "road apples"?

Could we be sure we are talking "apples and apples" versus "apples and road apples"?

I am aware there is a so-called "loophole for registrars" which allows them to conduct "training courses" without being tagged "consultants."

Before we (collectively or individually) go hunting scalps, we need to know precisely what activity the registrar in question is performing.

Certainly, there are registrars and geographic managers of registrars who have stepped over the line from auditing into consulting. Usually, investigation shows the situation is founded in ignorance rather than venality. In my opinion, the ignorant need a wake-up call from the auditing community. The venal need to be drummed out of the business.

With apologies to Omar, partial information is almost worse than no information, because it can inflame passions without providing a route to relieve stress. Even if you are loathe to identify the company, at least post the exact language (including the "tiny print") in which registration is "guaranteed."
 
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