Build a Stronger Society Through Certifications
Once you have successfully established a management system, it is now time to acquaint yourself with the certification process
An audit that consists of the documentary verification to evaluate the fulfillment of the main requirements that constitute the client’s management system. On this occasion, the overall adequacy of compliance with the assessment criteria (the reference standards) and whether the management system is fit to be audited in Stage 2 (conformity assessment) is examined. Also at this stage is prepared the audit plan of Stage 2, based on the context of the company, responsible and areas to be visited, is confirmed with the client.
Documented conclusions regarding meeting Stage 1 objectives and fitness to proceed to Stage 2 will be communicated to the client, including identifying any areas of concern that could be classified as nonconformities during phase 2.
On Stage 2 we delve into the practical workings of your management system. This stage revolves around gauging how effectively your system is being put into action. We’ll conduct this phase on-site at your premises, including visits to different areas of your company. Our team will review documents, records, and conduct interviews with your staff. The aim is to ensure that your practices align with each requirement outlined in the reference standard.
During this audit, it’s your chance to showcase how your day-to-day operations, management strategies, and adherence to compliance procedures with the certification standard’s requirements. In the event that any deviations from the standard are identified we’ll carefully document these instances in an audit report. And rest assured, we’re here to guide you through the process. You’ll have a designated timeframe to outline your action plan for rectifying these issues, including addressing the root causes and laying out the corrective steps.
If our auditor recommends certification, the journey continues with a technical review and the final certification decision. Once the technical review is approved, you’ll receive your well-earned certificate. From there, you’re free to proudly display it, following all the guidelines provided in the Use of Marks and Certification Seals.
Ensuring Ongoing Compliance
At QMS CERTIFICATION, we’re dedicated to upholding your certification status by ensuring that you consistently meet the requirements of the management system standard.
To achieve this, QMS develops a series of supervisory activities, anchored in our control and audit program. These activities are designed to keep a close watch on key areas and functions within the scope of your management system. Our process also accounts for any shifts that might occur among our certified clients or in their management systems.
Our supervisory efforts include conducting on-site audits at least once a year. These audits serve to gauge whether your certified management system maintains alignment with the stipulated requirements of the relevant standard.
Upon the conclusion of each maintenance audit, we’ll provide you with a comprehensive report detailing the undertaken activities. Additionally, any identified nonconformities will be documented, requiring attention and resolution before the next audit cycle.
The certification period extends over 3 years – the same duration as the ISO standards for Management Systems certificate. This duration remains valid as long as the prescribed supervisory activities are diligently upheld. As the end of this 3-year period approaches, a Recertification audit becomes necessary before the certificate’s expiration. This step ensures the seamless continuity of your certification.
General Terms and Conditions for the Provision of Services
The client undertakes to provide full and total access to the company’s premises, without exception and to cooperate with all the requirements required by QMS CERTIFICATION in the course of providing services, in accordance with the Terms of this document.
The customer undertakes to comply with the requirements of QMS CERTIFICATION, as defined herein, as well as in contract and with documented procedures and publicly available instructions, such as: Guide for Use of Marks and Certificate; Audit process; Certification Process, Policies, among others. These required procedures may be from QMS CERTIFICATION or its Accrediting Bodies.
The customer undertakes to provide all access and cooperation required by QMS CERTIFICATION in the course of providing the services and undertakes to pay all fees and charges related to the services, in accordance with the terms established in legal agreements in force between the parties, as applicable (Contract, Proposal, Purchase Order, Policies, Terms of Reference, among others).
The client also agrees that the Accreditation Bodies and any observers, such as auditors-in-training, accompany the auditors of QMS CERTIFICATION to witness the conduct of an audit of QMS CERTIFICATION if so chosen. If you do not agree, with a plausible justification and formally accepted by those involved, you understand that you may suffer sanctions such as suspension and / or cancellation of the certificate.
The customer undertakes to indemnify QMS CERTIFICATION against any losses as a result of misuse of any authorization or license granted by QMS CERTIFICATION under these Terms, regardless of fault or intent.
Notification of Changes
QMS CERTIFICATION requires the customer to inform it immediately of any significant changes, or events affecting its Organization with an impact on the management system, including, where applicable: fatal accidents, serious accidents at work, occupational diseases, etc., in particular regarding the occurrence of a serious incident or violation of regulations that requires the involvement of the competent regulatory authority, such as the Ministry of Health, Labor, Environment, as well as Regulatory Bodies or Agencies related to the discipline of certification adopted by the company and object of this contract.
Regardless of the involvement of the competent regulatory authority, a special audit may be required if QMS Certification becomes aware that there has been a serious incident related to the certification discipline adopted by the Organization subject to this contract, as applicable, regarding Occupational Health and Safety, Environment, Information Safety and Privacy, Quality, Compliance or Bribery, for example, a serious accident, or a serious breach of regulation, in order to investigate whether the management system has not been compromised and has functioned effectively.
At the time of the audit, all pertinent information related to the certification scheme adopted by the client must also be reported, which may involve aspects of Occupational Health and Safety, Compliance, Environment, Information Safety and Privacy, Quality and others, as applicable.
The information collected regarding aspects of Occupational Health and Safety, Environment, Information Safety and Privacy, Quality, Compliance and Anti-Bribery will provide grounds for the Certification Body to decide on the actions to be taken, including the suspension or withdrawal of certification, in cases where it can be demonstrated that the system has seriously failed to comply with the certification requirements.
QMS CERTIFICATION informs its certified clients of any changes to their requirements for certification and verifies that each certified client meets the new requirements, where applicable.
QMS CERTIFICATION agrees to maintain strict standards to safeguard the confidentiality of information obtained or created during the execution of certification activities at all levels of its structure, including all acting on its behalf. Information obtained during the provision of audit and/or training services on any client or person shall not be disclosed to third parties without the written consent of the client or person concerned, except for information that a Certification Body is required to make public in accordance with the standards of reference, namely: name of the Organization, related normative document (corresponding ISO Management System standard), scope and geographical location (city and country) for a specific certified client. When QMS CERTIFICATION is required by law to disclose confidential information to a third party, the customer must be notified in advance of the information provided. QMS CERTIFICATION maintains a confidentiality policy and appropriate procedures to ensure the confidentiality of all client information, as well as ensuring that all auditors and other team members acting on its behalf are also subject to Confidentiality Terms.
Conflit of Interest
Upon acceptance of performance in the audit process, the auditor(s) confirm(s) that they have no conflict of interest with the Organization to be evaluated. The conflict-of-interest waiver guarantee agreement is signed by all QMS CERTIFICATION auditors at the time of its approval. The Organization to be certified must also inform QMS CERTIFICATION of any possible conflicts upon being notified of the auditing team in the Audit Confirmation.
QMS CERTIFICATION, any employee or person acting in the certification processes on its behalf may not offer or provide Management Systems consulting services to a client to be certified. QMS BRASIL does not offer consulting services in Management System.
QMS does not outsource audits to a management system consulting organization, as this situation constitutes an unacceptable threat to its impartiality.
Use of Trademarks
QMS CERTIFICATION will make available to its certified clients the Reference Guide to Certification and Use of Marks (QMS.SAO.GD.003), where they can find the relevant guidelines for the correct reference to certification and use of the marks of QMS CERTIFICATION and its Accreditors. QMS Certification will, where appropriate, take action to deal with incorrect references to certification status or misleading use of certification documents, marks or audit reports.
QMS Certification does not allow its name and brand to be used in a way that could compromise its reputation and cause it to lose public trust. Any malicious or unauthorized use of QMS Certification’s name and logos may be subject to applicable sanctions. Such actions may include requests for correction and corrective action, suspension, cancellation of certification, publication of the transgression and, if necessary, legal action. The client undertakes to acknowledge and follow the rules of this Guide, including the General Terms provided herein, including that the certified company:
- May use the “Certified Company” seal pertinent to the certified Management System(s), make reference to its certification status in media such as the internet, brochures, advertisements or other documents, provided that it follows all the rules of these Terms and other QMS Certification rules when making reference to its certification status;
- Do not make or allow any misleading statements regarding its certification;
- Do not use or allow the use of a certification document or any part of it in a way that is misleading;
- In the event of cancellation of its certification, discontinue the use of all advertising material that refers to certification;
- Change all advertising material when the scope of certification has been reduced;
- Do not allow the reference to its management system certification to be used in such a way as to imply that QMS Certification certifies a product (including service) or process;
- Do not imply that certification applies to activities and sites outside the scope of certification;
- Do not use its certification in such a way as to compromise QMS Certification’s reputation and/or the certification system and lose public trust.
The client authorizes the use of its logo for the purposes of dissemination of certification and marketing by QMS CERTIFICATION, unless otherwise stated.
Complaints and Appeal
QMS CERTIFICATION has a process for handling complaints and appeals. If there is any disagreement with the content of the audit report, the conduct of the evaluator or the evaluation process itself in general, the client should immediately contact QMS CERTIFICATION by email firstname.lastname@example.org. It is worth mentioning that the entire process of appeal and complaint will be evaluated by a competent person independent of the process.
Once the occurrence is received, the Excellence Area critically analyzes it and has the following deadlines for responses:
- Communicates to the sender of the occurrence that it has been received and is being directed to those responsible for negotiations;
- Gives a period of 15 calendar days to the respondent (when applicable), from the arrival of the complaint, for action plan and response indicating all the negotiations to be carried out.
The Excellence area will monitor the progress of the occurrence and whenever necessary will give information to the sender of the occurrence about the progress. Upon closing, it will communicate the result to the sender.
Suspension, Cancellation or Reduction of the Scope of Certification
QMS CERTIFICATION temporarily suspends the certification, at any time during its validity, in the following cases:
a) When the management system has persistently or seriously failed to meet the certification requirements, that is, when there are major nonconformities.
b) The approved organisation does not allow supervisory or recertification audits to be carried out at the required frequencies;
c) The certified organisation voluntarily requests a suspension;
d) The clauses of the service contract and/or these General Terms and Conditions are not complied with, including non-compliance with financial obligations;
e) The organisation misuses the certification certificate and/or logo;
The suspension and/or cancellation of the certification is communicated to the customer formally by e-mail, when the conditions and deadlines for the re-establishment of the certification are established, as well as the detailed reasons for this suspension or cancellation. All procedures will follow the specific procedure for each case.
Cancellation or Postponement of Audits
If the customer cancels or postpones a scheduled audit after the minimum thirty (30) days’ notice, a fee of up to 50% of the amount provided for the audit will be charged.
Scope of Operations and Terms and Conditions
QMS Code of Conduct
Applicable to any and all audit and certification service provision in terms of current and applicable legal requirements