Certification processes

Audit processes

Our sustainability management system describes our operating processes. The system operates by firstly understanding our stakeholder needs and then planning how these will be satisfied. The elements of different Certification Services are then created and sold in combinations that match the customer's needs and the level of management system maturity. The solution is then delivered as planned before business results of effectiveness and efficiency are reviewed and any improvements actioned. This sustainability cycle is supported by key support processes that cover the management of IT, people, partners and money. SC-UK Ltd does not have any processes where the service cannot be tested before use by the customer. 

Suspension, Withdrawal, or Reduction of Scope of Certificates 

Certification may be suspended if an organisation : 

- Fails to maintain its management system or it contravenes the certification scheme regulations.

- Does not allow for surveillance or re-assessment audits to be perfomed in the prescribed time.

- Voluntarily requests suspension

Procedures are maintained for the withdrawal and cancellation of certificates in these circumstances.

Withdrawal will normally be considered if there is no resolution to the issues raised that resulted in suspension and suspension has been in place for 6 months. 

Alternatively, where an organisation has failed to adequately maintain its management system or it contravenes the certification scheme regulations in a part of its scope, SC-UK Ltd may reduce the scope of certification accordingly. 

Maintenance, Renewal and Extension of Certificates


Recertification audits have critical schedule timing requirements. If surveillance audits are delayed such that they are outside of the required tolerances then additional audit time may be required to compensate for the delay.


Reassessment audits also have critical schedule timing requirements: 

- +/- 2 months from the target date

- No less than 3 months before the expiry date of the certificate

Conversely; it may be necessary to bring forward the recertification audit to meet client needs such as seasonal demands etc.; in these cases, the RA should ideally not be brought forward to more than 6 months prior to certificate expiry. However; each case will be considered independently based on the justification given. 


Additional audit time may be required when a standard is updated to a new version or the client requires an extension to their current scope of certification. 

Granting of Certification

The granting of certification decision is made by SOCOTEC Certification UK’s Certification Decision Makers. The granting of certification is made once all criteria have been met and adequately address the applicable requirements.

Refusal of Certification

SOCOTEC Certification UK’s Certification Decision Makers may refuse certification if the client organization does not meet applicable accreditation requirements and if the potential client organization is not a legal entity.

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