The IAF/ILAC Mid-Term meetings held in Frankfurt between 4 and 11 April 2018 brought together all members of IAF, both Accreditation Bodies (ABs) and the Association Members, including the certification body (CB) associations and user group members.
This meeting marked the first at which IIOC Chief Executive Marcus Long chaired the IAF Conformity Assessment Bodies’ Advisory Committee (CABAC). This CABAC meeting drew together eight CB associations who collectively represent the majority of certification accredited by IAF AB members. The Committee discussed a range of issues, including the transition of ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 certified customers to the 2015 versions. They also discussed the key issues that came out from the many Working Groups and Task Forces and strategic issues such as the IAF database of management system certificates.
The IAF Technical Committee is one of the other key meetings, drawing together – as the name suggests – all the key technical issues for ABs and CBs. Again, the ISO transitions was a key part of discussions and from the meeting IAF issued a communiqué acting as a reminder to all certified entities who have yet to transition to do so before 15 September 2018.
Strategic issues were also on the agenda, such as IAF and ILAC working together to rethink the peer evaluation process, a cornerstone of the robust, accredited certification system. The IAF Executive Committee (which Marcus is on as IAF Director representing the CB associations), confirmed its consent for the IAF Database Management Committee to finalise and sign the contract with the provider of the database, signalling the start of the development stage of the database. The database will provide a vital point of visibility for management certificates held by organisations certified by a CB with accreditation from an IAF member.
During the meetings, IAF and GFSI (Global Food Safety Initiative) signed a new partnership. Under this partnership, ‘IAF and GFSI commit to developing and maintaining a close cooperation to ensure harmonisation of accreditation practices across the GFSI-benchmarked food safety certification programmes.’ Further details can be seen here.
With many decisions reached and actions agreed, IAF members will take forward a range of activities before meeting again at the IAF/ILAC Joint Annual Meetings in Singapore from 22-31 October 2018.