ISO International Standards ensure that products and services are safe, reliable and of good quality. For business, they are strategic tools that reduce costs by minimizing waste and errors, and increasing productivity. They help companies to access new markets, level the playing field for developing countries and facilitate free and fair global trade.
These standards can be applied to any organisation, large or small, whatever the product or service and regardless of the sector of activity.
Audits are a vital part of the management system approach as they enable the company or organization to check how far their achievements meet their objectives and show conformity to the standard.
(The United Kingdom Accreditation Service) is the national accreditation body for the United Kingdom, appointed by government, to assess organisations that provide certification, testing, inspection and calibration services.
(British Standards Institution) is the national standards body of the United Kingdom. BSI produces technical standards on a wide range of products and services, and also supplies certification and standards-related services to businesses.
(National Security Inspectorate) Certification for security and fire protection companies
NSI is accredited by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS), which operates under a Memorandum of Understanding with the Government through the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills.
NSI Management certifications are a family of internationally recognised standards designed to ensure organisations meet the needs of their customers and other stakeholders. Management Systems applications include:
- Quality – BS EN ISO 9001
- Environmental – BS EN ISO 14001
- Health & Safety – BS OHSAS 18001
(Security Systems and Alarms Inspection Board) is a leading certification body for organisations providing security systems and services, fire detection and alarm systems, telecare systems and services, manned services, approved contractors’ scheme and monitoring services.
(Security Industry Authority) is the organisation responsible for regulating the private security industry approved contractor scheme in the UK. In 2006, NSI was appointed as an assessing body for The Approved Contractors Scheme (ACS) run by the Security Industry Authority.
(Fire Protection Association) is the UK’s national fire safety organisation work to identify and draw attention to the dangers of fire and the means by which their potential for loss is kept to a minimum. Since their formation in 1946 they have attained an unrivalled reputation for quality of work and expertise in all aspects of fire including research, consultancy, training, membership, publications, risk surveying and auditing.
(British Approvals for Fire Equipment) is the independent, third party certification registration body for quality in the UK fire protection industry. BAFE have been developing schemes for UKAS accredited Certification Bodies to assess and approve fire protection companies to recognised quality standards.
The Department for Communities and Local Government states:“We support third party certification schemes as an effective means of assuring the quality, reliability and safety of products and services, and recognise the valuable role BAFE plays in bringing to the marketplace recognised registration schemes for these products and services”
(Association of Security Consultants) Founded in 1991, the Association of Security Consultants is recognised as the professional organisation for independent security consultants, representing their interests and promoting their Independent and Impartial activities.
(Health and Safety Executive) it is 40 years since the Health and Safety at Work Act received Royal Assent, providing a new regulatory framework for work place health and safety in Great Britain. This has helped make Britain one of the safest places in the world to work, saving thousands of lives, preventing many more injuries at work and reducing the economic and social costs of health and safety failures.
From 1 April 2013, the body which regulated the UK financial services industry, the Financial Services Authority (FSA), was replaced by two new regulatory bodies.
- The Prudential Regulatory Authority (PRA) regulates key aspects of the financial strength of a firm
- The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) regulates how these firms behave
Some of the larger financial services firms, such as banks and insurance providers, will be regulated by both of these regulators. Smaller financial services firms, such as financial advisers and asset managers, will be regulated only by the FCA. In these instances, the FCA will not only regulate how these firms behave but also regulate all aspects of the financial strength of a firm.
There are a number of other bodies with responsibilities over the financial services sector.