When can you be "accredited" and not be "accredited" with A2LA?

M

micron master

#1
Well, with A2LA, it seems it's easy.

I was quite surprised to find an expired scope up on
A2LA's list of Accredited Labs.

They have a fine print disclaimer at the top of their search page, and they say that takes care of it. The explaination is that the lab might be "in process".

When we were "in-process" for a renewal, a new scope was issued with an extended expiration date, and I assumed this is how that situation would always be handled. Apparently not.

The scope that I found, which was a competitor by the way, expired on 30 Jul 06, but was still showing on A2LA's page on 6 Dec 06. Expiration dates on scopes only appear in two places, on the actual Certificate, and on the title page of the scope.

I would suggest that all A2LA consumers pay attention to this, so you get what you think you are getting. I had foolishly assumed that if a company was linked on their
Accredited Lab page that they were (of course) current.

Never too old to learn,,,,,:bonk:
 
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Hershal

Metrologist-Auditor
Trusted Information Resource
#2
Re: When can you be "accredited" and not be "accredited"?

I suspect you will get a lot of comments in reply, I'm just acknowledging your post.
 
J

JerryStem

#3
As soon as our assessor left in early November, I emailed A2LA for an extension. I started the paperwork as normal in June, we were set to expire November 22nd.

They finally gave me a choice of auditor around Sep, and early Nov was the earliest he could do it (6-7-8th). Now I sent in the def responses, and he's gone to Japan again for at least a week, so who knows when I'll get the notice of whether I'm worthy or not? They extended the expiration to Dec 30th at least...

But, last year the 3 voting members had issues with our method of measurement uncertainty & held up our renewal for months, even months past our exp date. I had to keep explaining to customers what was going on, A2LA finally faxed a letter explaining the situation, and eventually gave an official extension.

Always something.....:rolleyes:
 
M

micron master

#4
Update - This is the response from A2LA:
- Expired Scopes of Accreditation will no longer be included in the list of "Accredited Labs".

- Our Lab Services staff will be proactive in automatically granting extensions of accreditation to those laboratories in "good standing" at the end of each month so that only current Scopes are included on the list.

- A separate list will be created of "Renewals in Process". This list will be separated from the other on the website and will include a very explicit statement that the Scopes are expired, but the labs are somewhere in the renewal process. We do not want to remove these labs completely from our website, as it would unfairly give the impression that they are no longer associated with us in any way. The disclaimer included with this list, however, will instruct people to confirm completion of the renewal process before contracting for any accredited work with those labs.

As these changes will require some reprogramming of our database and modifications to our website, a full implementation date of 2/28/07 has been established.
Good news methinks.
 
J

Jeff Frost

#5
If the use of A2LA is not mandated by a customer why on earth would you or should you put up with such poor customer service. Send them a letter expressing your concerns and what you expect from them. If they ignore your concerns then you should migrate your certification to another accreditation body.
 

Hershal

Metrologist-Auditor
Trusted Information Resource
#6
Jeff Frost has a valid point.....always shop around.....

Go to http://www.ilac.org

Find the page of the ILAC signatories and query all that are operating in the North American area.....any of those signatory bodies are acceptable, and you should get quotes from all.

Hope this helps.

Hershal
 
M

micron master

#7
They have never ignored my concerns, but they have not always changed to my satisfaction

Migrating is an option, but there does not seem to be
an alternative that can be called "better". I'm willing to work
within the system, but it does get frustrating.

We've been with them for 5 years now, through 3 full audits,
so the staff knows me fairly well. :notme:
 
J

JerryStem

#8
As an update, finally called A2LA to check on our responses. The LSO had been out the last 2 weeks on an audit & "saw my paperwork in her in-basket" and would review it shortly.

Of course, they wanted more explanations & put it past our (extended) cert date. Sooooo, got ANOTHER extension (this time till late Feb) & at least had it done the last day we were here before the holidays, so it could be put on our website to try to stave off the onslaught of requests for new certs.

So, it's ILAC huh?
 
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