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Glossary of Certification Definitions

Quality Certifications Definitions
Quality standards are usually documents written by developing bodies such as the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) or trade organizations such as the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE). Quality standards are used to compare an organization to what the authorities say are best practices for a quality management system. Quality standards can either be written in terms general enough to be used across any industry or written with requirements for a specific industry. Industry specific quality standards may be written with the help of experts in that industry.

ACC
The American Chemistry Council (ACC) is a trade association representing companies engaged in the business of chemistry. The association's mission is to deliver business value through advocacy using members, political engagement, communications and scientific research. View all ACC certifications

ANSI
The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) is a non-profit organization that coordinates the U.S. private sector voluntary standardization system. The institute is comprised of U.S. businesses, professional societies and trade associations, standards developers, government agencies, institutes and consumer and labor interests. ANSI facilitates the creation, promulgation, and use of standards and norms for many industries including but not limited to acoustics, agriculture and energy. ANSI does not actually develop any of the certification standards but rather develops the procedures that define the development of the standards. ANSI accredits the organizations that develop American National Standards and approves drafts that abide by the ANSI established procedures. There are currently 220 ANSI-accredited standards developers including organizations such as NFPA International, ASME International and NSF International. ANSI accreditation ensures that these organizations adhere to ANSI's principals of openness, balance, due process and consensus. ANSI supplies its accredited standards developers with management services by identifying the need for a standard, setting priorities for its completion and assuring that all impacted stakeholders have an opportunity to participate. View all ANSI certifications

ANSI/NCSL
The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) is a non-profit organization that coordinates the U.S. private sector voluntary standardization system. The institute is comprised of U.S. businesses, professional societies and trade associations, standards developers, government agencies, institutes and consumer and labor interests. ANSI facilitates the creation, promulgation, and use of standards and norms for many industries including but not limited to acoustics, agriculture and energy. ANSI does not actually develop any of the certification standards but rather develops the procedures that define the development of the standards. ANSI accredits the organizations that develop American National Standards and approves drafts that abide by the ANSI established procedures. There are currently 220 ANSI-accredited standards developers including organizations such as NFPA International, ASME International and NSF International. ANSI accreditation ensures that these organizations adhere to ANSI's principals of openness, balance, due process and consensus. ANSI supplies its accredited standards developers with management services by identifying the need for a standard, setting priorities for its completion and assuring that all impacted stakeholders have an opportunity to participate. NCSL stands for National Conference of Standards Laboratory and is an organization that provides metrology education and skills development, provides tools and resources to enhance member processes and works to drive technical integrity in documentary standards. View all ANSI/NCSL certifications

ASME
ASME is a not-for-profit membership organization that enables collaboration, knowledge sharing, career enrichment, and skills development across all engineering disciplines, toward a goal of helping the global engineering community develop solutions to benefit lives and livelihoods. Founded in 1880 by a small group of leading industrialists, ASME has grown through the decades to include more than 130,000 members in 158 countries. Thirty-thousand of these members are students. View all ASME certifications

Automotive Industry
The automotive industry includes the major automotive manufacturers such as Chrysler, Ford and General Motors. Initially, each manufacturer had individual quality requirements. The major auto manufacturers worked together to develop one set of quality requirements that each manufacturer agreed on and it became an industry wide standard. View all Automotive Industry certifications

ISO
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is the world's most recognized and largest developer of international Standards. ISO is an independent, non-governmental organization made up of members from the national standards bodies of 162 countries, coordinated by the Central Secretariat in Switzerland. The 19,000 standards developed are all entirely voluntary and provide helpful information to businesses around the world by providing specifications on products, services and good practice with the intention of reducing obstacles for international trade. ISO standards are developed by a panel of experts within a technical committee. When the need for a new standard is established, the technical committee meets to discuss and draft a standard. The draft is shared with ISO's members who are asked to comment and vote on it. If a consensus is reached, the draft becomes a standard; if no consensus is reached the draft goes back to the technical committee for further review. View all ISO certifications

ISO/IEC
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is the world's most recognized and largest developer of international Standards. ISO is an independent, non-governmental organization made up of members from the national standards bodies of 162 countries, coordinated by the Central Secretariat in Switzerland. The 19,000 standards developed are all entirely voluntary and provide helpful information to businesses around the world by providing specifications on products, services and good practice with the intention of reducing obstacles for international trade. View all ISO/IEC certifications

Nadcap
The National Aerospace and Defense Contractors Accreditation Program (NADCAP) is a cooperative of major companies that manages specific processes in the aerospace industry. In particular, the cooperative works to develop cost effective approaches to these specific processes so as to constantly be improving the aerospace industry. View all Nadcap certifications

NELAC
The NELAC Institute (TNI) is a non-profit organization of state and federal officials formed to establish and promote mutually acceptable performance standards for the operation of environmental laboratories. These performance standards apply to both analytical testing of environmental samples and the laboratory accreditation process. Accreditation standards are developed by Expert Committees using a consensus process. Standards are developed in conformance with TNI's Procedures Governing Standards Development. The Expert Committees develop a working draft standard that is presented to the membership and the public at the TNI Forum on Laboratory Accreditation. The Expert Committees modify their working draft as a result of any input received during and after the forum, then produce a Voting Draft Standard. All TNI members may vote electronically with the option to include comments. The Expert Committees then allow for public debate on every comment at the next forum and also hold meetings to rule on each comment and publish their response to those comments. All comments must be resolved and the draft will be revised if necessary as a result of these comments, then the draft will need to be approved by a majority vote of the Committee Members; at this point, the standard then becomes final as the TNI Standard. Finally, the standard undergoes an editorial review for consistency and then is published on the TNI website with a 30 day time frame to allow for any appeals. The standards are available for adoption once any appeals are resolved. View all NELAC certifications

NFFS
The Non-Ferrous Founders? Society (NFFS) is an industry trade association representing aluminum, brass and bronze foundries and ingot manufacturers. The association is made up of member foundries, not individuals as the association focuses on services at the organizational level. NFFS aims to help foundries simplify regulatory compliance activities, keep abreast of new technology and government regulations, reduce operating expenses and improve plant profitability. NFFS developed NQS 9000, an industry specific ISO 9000 compliant quality program for foundries. View all NFFS certifications

Quest Forum
Quality Excellence for Suppliers of Telecommunications (QuEST) Forum is a collaboration of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) service providers and suppliers dedicated to improving operational and supply chain quality and performance. QuEST Forum implements the TL9000 standard, an industry specific quality management system that is built on ISO9001. View all Quest Forum certifications

Railroad Industry
The railroad industry includes rail operators and companies that design, manufacture, maintain and refurbish rail transport systems and equipment. View all Railroad Industry certifications

SAE
SAE International is a global association of engineers and technical experts in the aerospace, automotive and commercial-vehicle industries. One of SAE's core competencies is in the development of voluntary consensus standards. SAE technical reports, which include SAE standards, SAE recommended practices, SAE Information Reports and SAE Aerospace Material Specifications are developed by SAE's technical committees, consisting of technical experts from government, industry, regulatory agencies and academia. SAE technical committees are responsible for the preparation, development and maintenance of all relevant technical reports within their scope. A designated sponsor for these reports serves as the focal point within the committee for activities associated with the development of the technical report, including preparing drafts and resolving all comments received during the approval process. For these technical reports to be approved, the sponsor submits a draft to SAE. Committee members vote and provide comments on the document; the sponsor will attempt to resolve all comments from committee members. The report then goes to the governing body of the initiating committee for a process level review. Once approved by this governing body, SAE will publish the technical report. View all SAE certifications

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