Product Certification Programs

Product certification programs can be voluntary or mandatory, and they may be carried out by either private sector bodies or government agencies.

Certification programs have two essential characteristics. They are conducted by an independent third party and include some form of inspection and/or verification activity. Third-party certification programs can differ greatly from one another. The degree of confidence that can be placed in a particular certification program depends on many factors, such as the adequacy of the product standards used; the program's comprehensiveness (the number and types of testing and inspection methods used within the program to assess conformity); the size of the sample and the type(s) of sampling process(es) used; the use of quality management system requirements; the competence of the personnel involved in the program; the adequacy of the facilities and equipment; and the nature and extent of any surveillance or follow-up procedures used to assure that product continues to conform.

For more information about certification, go to the National Institute of Standards and Technology Global Standards Information website.

The certification programs listed here are well recognized within the design and building industries.

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