TERMS AND CONDITIONS OF CONTRACT

Last update: 23rd May 2024

ABOUT US

SC Limited (SC) is an independent certification body for

  • Installation of Energy Efficiency Measures (PAS 2030)
  • Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS)
  • Flexi-Orb
  • Building Information Modelling – BIM (ISO 19650)
  • Quality (ISO 9001)
  • Environmental (ISO 14001)
  • Occupational Health and Safety Management systems (ISO 45001)
  • Information Security Management (ISO 27001)
  • Energy Management (ISO 50001)
  • Business Continuity (ISO 22301)

to recognised international and national standards.

We operate under the direction of a Governing Board in compliance with ISO 17021, ISO 17065 and associated EAC Guidelines and our procedures are administered in a non-discriminatory manner.

We are a self funded business that generate our own funds to operate.

ASSESSMENT AND CERTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS 

  1. The client should have a fully operational management system in line with the standard you are being assessed to including controlled and up to date documents.
  2. The client will provide Simply with a copy of the Management System Manual and other documentation as requested.
  3. The client will grant permission for the conduct of an assessment by qualified assessors carrying out an assessment in two stages according to the agreed program.
  4. The client will grant permission for UKAS and/or TrustMark and relevant schemes such as MCS and Flexi-ORB to access data as required and attend assessment audits as required to verify the competence of Simply assessors.
  5. The client will ensure the most appropriate people are available during assessments to ensure a smooth and successful audit. It is beneficial for the person/people that are chosen to support the audit understand the businesses processes, and have access to all systems and documentation relating to the standard being assessed. This could include, but not limited (relevant on the standard being assessed) to the Quality Manager, Team Leader, Installer, Retrofit Co-Ordinator, Director, Office Manager etc.

FEES AND PAYMENTS

To book in assessments, training, or consultancy 100% of the invoice costs should be settled.

For certification services, certifications will only be issued once full payment has been made.

Any certification costs paid to Simply for assessments which were not booked in by 12 months will be lost. Should an assessment need to be booked in at a later date, the fee must be paid again in full. This includes but limited to initial and surveillance assessments.

Cooling off period

As long as an assessment has not been confirmed or began (if so refer to our Cancellation Policy), you can cancel this agreement within 14 days under our cooling off period and you are entitled to a full refund.

Post 14 days and if you have not booked in or begun the assessment process and decide not to proceed at this stage, we will hold monies within credit ready for when you do wish to progress your application for certification.

Cancellation Policy

Cancellation of a booked assessment within 48 hours of the assessment 100% fees non-refundable
Cancellation of a booked assessment two – thirty days prior to the assessment 50% non-refundable
Application withdrawal within 14 days of application being accepted May be eligible for a partial refund. A review of the % refunded will be based on work carried out on the certification process to that point.
Void Fee, covers any issues arising during a booked appointment, including but not limited to:

  • Failure to be present or available when the assessor/auditor has attended at the scheduled appointment
  • Being unreasonably late to an assessment
  • The working environment is unsafe
  • The environment and/or welfare facilities are unsuitable or inadequate
  • For installation inspections, the relevant measures/technologies are inadequate for inspection
  • Any required contracts/documentation has not been provided by the requested deadline
  • Failure to co-operate during an assessment
  • Failure to respond to non-conformances within the agreed time frame
  • If assessments are not l=booked within 12 months, the monies will be lost
100% fees non-refundable

SAFETY

Safety is important to us, and we ask that you tell us about safety requirements prior to the initial visit.

Should protective equipment be required then you must supply it to us for the purposes of our work at your premises.

CODE OF CONDUCT 

All members of the Simply team adhere to a Code of Conduct, to ensure our clients are treat with the respect the deserve. We expect out clients to treat us the same way. This includes but not limited to:

  • Do not use foul, abusive, racial or inciteful language nor engage in innuendoes or sexually explicit language.
  • Be on time for appointments.
  • Health and Safety polices should be adhered to at all times.
  • Do not make any derogatory comments.
  • No smoking except in designated smoking areas.
  • Treat all work spaces, offices or properties with respect.
  • Do not use threats, blackmail or intimidation.

Any actions that abuse the code of conduct will be investigated and may result in, but not limited to:

  • Your application for certification being rejected.
  • Your certification being suspended.

IMARTIALITY AND CONFLICTS OF INTEREST

Simply provide an objective and fair assessment and certification process. Impartiality is at the core of our business ethos. Simply have in place an Impartiality Terms of Reference and an Impartiality Committee to safeguard the impartiality of its activities.

We recognise the following as threats to our impartiality:

  • Self-interest
  • Self-review
  • Familiarity
  • Intimidation

Any actions that abuse the our policy will be investigated and may result in, but not limited to:

  • Your application for certification being rejected.
  • Your certification being suspended.

CONTRACT

Certification Agreement

  • As the client you will always fulfil the certification requirements including implementing appropriate changes when they are communicated by SC
  • If the certification applies to ongoing production, the certified product continues to fulfil the product requirements
  • As our client you will make all necessary arrangements for
    • the conduct of the evaluation and surveillance (if required), including provision for examining documentation and records, and access to the relevant equipment, location(s), area(s), personnel, and subcontractors;
    • investigation of complaints;
    • the participation of observers, if applicable;
  • The client makes claims regarding certification consistent with the scope of certification;
  • The client does not use its product certification in such a manner as to bring SC into disrepute and does not make any statement regarding its product certification that SC may consider misleading or unauthorised;
  • Upon suspension, withdrawal, or termination of certification, the client discontinues its use of all advertising matter that contains any reference thereto and takes action as required by the certification scheme (e.g. the return of certification documents) and takes any other required measure;
  • If the client provides copies of the certification documents to others, the documents shall be reproduced in their entirety or as specified in the certification scheme;
  • In making reference to its product certification in communication media such as documents, brochures or advertising, the client complies with the requirements of SC or as specified by the certification scheme;
  • The client complies with any requirements that may be prescribed in the certification scheme relating to the use of marks of conformity, and on information related to the product;
  • The client keeps a record of all complaints made known to it relating to compliance with certification requirements and makes these records available to SC when requested, and
    • takes appropriate action with respect to such complaints and any deficiencies found in products that affect compliance with the requirements for certification;
    • documents the actions taken;
  • The client informs SC, without delay, of changes that may affect its ability to conform with the certification requirements.
    • the legal, commercial, organisational status or ownership,
    • organisation and management (e.g. key managerial, decision-making or technical staff),
    • modifications to the product or the production method,
    • contact address and production sites,
    • major changes to the quality management system.

Termination of agreement

Both parties shall have the right to terminate the agreement at any time by giving three months’ notice in writing, or immediately should:

  • The other party breach any of the conditions of certification and fail to remedy that breach within 30 days of being required to do so, or such other period as may be specified in writing.
  • The other party repeat a material breach of the conditions of certification which it has been previously required to remedy.
  • The other party become insolvent or enter into liquidation or has a receiver appointed or suffer any similar action as a consequence of debt.
  • Upon such termination all fees and other payments shall become immediately payable and any certificate of registration issued by us shall be invalidated with effect from the date of termination.
  • Upon withdrawal of certification, the client will discontinue its use of all advertising matter that contains reference to the relevant certification issued by SC.
  • Both the certificate and the rights to use the SC registered symbol remain our property.

Changes to your organisation

The client will inform us in writing, without delay of matters effecting the capability of the managements system to continue to fulfil the requirements of the standard used for certification.

These include, for example

  • Changes relating to the legal, commercial, organisational status or ownership, organisation and management (e.g. key managerial, decision-making, or technical staff).
  • Contact address and additional sites.
  • Scope of operations under the certified management system.
  • Major changes to the management system and processes.
  • Information on incidents such as a serious accident, or a serious breach of legislation necessitating the involvement of the competent regulatory authority.

Circumstance beyond yours/our control

SC shall be relieved of liability should either or both parties become unable to carry out their obligations as a result of any matter beyond their reasonable control and which was not to be reasonably foreseen.

Confidentiality

All information obtained by either party as a result of our mutual involvement in the certification process shall be held as confidential and not disclosed to any other party unless required as part of the certification process and agreed by both parties.

This confidentiality undertaking shall continue for 90 days after termination of this agreement.

Use of mark of certification/registration

Rules governing the use of the SC registration mark and certification icons will be issued with the certificate and must be complied with.

SC have the right to exercise the control the use and display of licenses, certificates, marks of conformity, and any other mechanisms for indicating a product is certified.

Incorrect references to the certification scheme, or misleading use of licenses, certificates, marks, or any other mechanism for indicating a product is certified, found in documentation or other publicity, shall be dealt with by suitable action.

Complaints and feedback

We have a customer compliant policy in place and being a customer focused organisation, your feedback is exceptionally important to us.

Any complaints should be raised immediately with our head office team so they can log your complaint and appropriate actions will be followed up.

We ask that every client completes our short “post service” online feedback form that will be issued to help us identify areas of improvement.

CERTIFICATION

Suspension or withdrawal of certification

The Certificate may be withdrawn or suspended for any of the following reasons

  • Breach of any of these terms.
  • The client’s certified management system has persistently or seriously failed to meet certification requirements
  • Failure to apply corrective action because of non- conformities found at assessment or surveillance visits.
  • Continued logo misuse.
  • Failure of the customer to settle any outstanding invoice’s within the required invoicing term.

In the event of withdrawal or suspension of certification the customer shall discontinue any reference to their certification across their platforms.

The customer shall return all certification documentation to our offices.

SC will make public to all interested parties the status of the certification.

Special Assessment Visit

We reserve the right to make an additional chargeable Special Assessment Visit in the following circumstances:

  • Where assessment is required verify the closure of non-conformances
  • At initial evaluation the condition of the management system or scope of certification is not as described during the application stage
  • Significant modifications to the management system have taken place
  • Significant changes to the organisation, scope or processes have occurred which were not notified to us in sufficient time prior to the standard assessment visit
  • Where we are required to investigate information on serious accidents or a breach of legislation resulting in the involvement of the regulatory authority
  • A series of events such as a high number of non-conformances and complaints raised over a 12 month period
  • If TrustMark registered, a TrustMark notification to us that highlights concern as an Installer of Interest therefore we moving the organisations onto the Installer of Interest Assessment Plan

Installer of Interest Assessment Plan 

We operate an ‘Installer of Interest Assessment Plan’ to businesses that are of interest to us. This may be optional or mandatory depending on the circumstances.

We have designed this programme to provide installers who have been identified as problematic with a chance to improve so that they can retain certification if they demonstrate improvement, rather than move to an immediate removal of their certification and registrations.

The installer organisation will be required to:

  • Attend an assessment with one of our assessors to help identify the root cause of their issues
  • Submit corrective actions through an improvement plan to demonstrate how the business intends to improve moving forward
  • Evidence through further assessment that the improvement plan has been implemented and is working
  • There is an additional fee to be moved onto the plan to cover the additional assessment and administration time required to closely monitor the installer organisation.
    • £995 + VAT (inclusive of expenses) per office assessment
    • £495 + VAT per technical inspection (if required)
  • Certification and registration will be removed where an organisation is:
    • Not willing to move onto the Installer of Interest Assessment Plan when required
    • Fails to comply with the agreed corrective actions from any assessments
    • Becomes uncooperative and unresponsive.

Once we are satisfied that the organisation has demonstrated a change in their procedures to address the root cause to reduce risk, they will be moved back onto our standard surveillance programme.

Customer Complaints about your Organisation

If we receive a complaint about your organisation we have a process in place that will need to be followed:

  1. The complaint will be logged on our system and we will acknowledge receipt of the complaint within 72 hours to the complainant.
  2. We will ask you to provide details around the complaint so we can carry out an investigation.
  3. We will ask that you to make contact with the complainant direct in the first instance to try and resolve the issue.
  4. Within four weeks we would expect in most cases for the complaint to be resolved with the organisation and complainant direct and we will ask you to provide evidence of this.
  5. If within the four weeks the issue is still outstanding the complainant may be given an option to access ADR (Alternative Dispute Resolution)
  6. If you are a TrustMark registered business, and the complainant feels the issue still has not been resolved, then we will provide them with an option to escalate the dispute to the Dispute Resolution Ombudsman (DRO) when all steps above have been exhausted.

As part of your certification agreement, we reserve the right to:

  1. Carry out a special visit to the complainant’s property and/or your head office to investigate the complaint. This will be at cost to the organisation. Failure to comply with this could result in suspension of certification and registration.
  2. Ask for the organisation to provide evidence of how they have dealt with the complaint to demonstrate that process has been followed. Failure to comply with this could result in suspension of certification registration.
  3. Increase risk of the business (resulting in an increase of surveillance inspections) where we find that the organisation has failed to meet their own process.

Appeals

In the event of a dispute or as a result of an unsuccessful application, you have the right of appeal. The appeal must be sent to the SC to review.

SC’s procedure for complaints, disputes and appeals can be made available on request.

Sharing Data

Please refer to our Privacy Policy. This Policy forms part of our Terms and Conditions.

PAS 2030

FEES AND CHARGES

Separate quotations are provided for the various stages of certification which will include:

Initial Certification

  • Processing of your application for certification
  • Head Office Assessment
  • On-site Technical Inspection for each measure applied for
  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am-5pm)
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals
  • Includes first certificate, SC mark of registration to use on your company collateral (there will be a small admin charge for any changes or additional certifications)

Surveillance Visits

  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am-5pm)
  • Each year we will carry out 1 Head Office Assessment and inspection between 1-10% of your installations
  • The % is based on the risk of your business and the risk of the measures installed
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals

Increase of Scope 

  • The processing of your application for certification to increase your scope
  • Head Office Assessment
  • On-site Technical Inspection for each measure applied for
  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am-5pm)
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals
  • Includes first certificate, SC mark of registration to use on your company collateral (there will be a small admin charge for any changes or additional certifications)

Payments and Fees

To progress to certification 100% of the invoice costs should be settled.

Our fees are based on a day rate of £980 + VAT.

The cost for certification is calculated using the following:

  • Application Fee – £129 +VAT
  • TrustMark Registration – £145 + VAT (if required)
  • TrustMark Licence Plus – £199 + VAT (if required)
  • Head office assessment – £9800 + VAT
  • Technical Inspections are priced as the following
    • £495 + VAT per measure or
    • £980 + VAT per day (this is a discounted rate applicable to up to 4 insulation (b) measures that can be inspected on the same day)
  • Additional Evaluation Time is priced as follows:
    • Review of non-conformances – £25 + VAT per non-conformance
    • Additional assessment time – dependant based on type, duration and number of assessments.
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals. Mileage is charged at £0.45 per mile

CERTIFICATION

Application Review 

All applications are subject to an application review prior to any assessments taking place. During the application review, we will carry out background checks on your business to ensure that there is no evidence of ‘Phoenix Companies’. A Phoenix Company suggests there are previous non-compliance issues that have not been addressed and are being avoided by the applicant. These checks include but are not limited to:

  • Identifying companies that have changed their name
  • Identifying company Directors that have set up multiple companies in the same industry
  • Reviewing related companies, dissolved companies and non-trading companies
  • Reviewing companies already certified with us that may have compliance issues
  • Identifying if the company has moved from another certification body

If the evidence suggests the company, related companies and company Directors have previous non-compliance issues with their previous certification body, TrustMark or any other source of intel, the application will not proceed. Monies will be refunded, minus the application review fee.

If the evidence shows that company, related companies and company Directors have current non-compliance issues with ourselves, the application will be put on hold until until issues are satisfactorily resolved.

Certification

Following satisfactory assessments, closure of non-conformances, internal verification of the assessment report and internal certification decision making, we shall issue a certificate, which is valid for 1 year.

Subsequent certificates are issued subject to continued satisfactory performance being achieved through surveillance assessments.

Non-Conformance

Non-conformance is the absence or failure to implement and maintain one or more requirements of the reference standard under assessment. Corrective action, preventative action and supporting evidence must be submitted to us no more than 8 weeks from the inspection date. If your response is not accepted by us within 12 weeks of the assessment date, you will be required to be reassessed in full at a cost to yourself.

Surveillance Visits Agreement

To maintain certification, each year we will carry out 1 Head Office Assessment and inspection between 1-10% of your installations . The % is based on the risk of your business and the risk of the measures installed.

The process is as follows:

  • We will calculate your surveillance visits. As soon as the % of surveillance visits need hits a minimum of 1 days of inspections (i.e. 4 measures), a list of properties will need to be submitted so that technical inspections can be arranged.
  • We will select the addresses we wish to inspect along with a date.
  • You are required to confirm these inspections with the home owner and provide us with paperwork associated to the install.
  • It is a contractual requirement with Green Deal Orb that you submit your weekly installation figures to your Certification Body. Failure to do this could lead to both PAS 2030 Certification and TrustMark to be suspended.

How Long Certification Takes

There are many factors that impact the certification timeline, these are largely on our customer side as we have set timeframes that we work within that ensures we provide the excellent customer service and to manage your expectations.

The time frames are detailed below:

  • Once you have paid, we will contact you within 72 hours to arrange your assessment dates.
  • Assessment Reports will be submitted no more than 48 hours after the event. This is also when you will receive details of any non-conformances found.
  • When you respond to a non-conformance, we will review your evidence no later than 10 working days. Please note we will only review your non-conformances when you have submitted corrective action, preventative action and relevant evidence for ALL non-conformances relating to your report.
  • When all non-conformances are closed, we will send your reports for independent Technical Verification. We will complete this within 5 working days.
  • Once the Technical Verification is complete, we will complete our Certification Decision Making Report. We aim to have this completed within 5 working days.
  • Upon the decision to grant certification, we will produce your certificate which must pass our quality checks. We aim to have this completed within 5 working days.

The above time frames will be longer for the following reasons:

  • Poor evidence is submitted to us against any raised non-conformance resulting in these being rejected and having to be re-submitted.
  • Additional non-conformances are raised during Technical Verification and Certification Decision Making.

FEES AND CHARGES

Separate quotations are provided for the various stages of certification which will include:

Initial Certification

  • Process of your application for certification
  • A document review of your existing system and visit
  • Head office visit
  • Technical inspections for each technology
  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am-5pm)
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals. Milage is charged at £0.45 per mile
  • Includes first certificate, SC mark of registration to use on your company collateral (there will be a small admin charge for any changes or additional certifications)
  • Upon initial certification clients are required to complete a monthly installation log of all measure specific work to enable us to produce accurate surveillance costings for the maintenance of certification
  • Where certification cannot be recommended at an initial Compliance Assessment visit, a Compliance Re-assessment will be considered and may be required at additional cost.
  • Where MCS Contractors do not engage in the design of microgeneration systems but work solely for a client who has already formally agreed a system design; then the MCS Contractor must be competent to review and verify that the design would satisfy the design requirements set out in the appropriate MCS Installation Standards.
  • Where the MCS Contractor uses subcontractors who are not themselves certified MCS Contractors, the SC will audit the verification process used by the MCS Contractor to ensure compliance with MCS 001-1 Clause 4.11. The extent of assessment shall take account of the number of subcontractors and the range of work undertaken by them.
  • Where an MCS Contractor operates from multiple offices then each office shall be subject to an assessment visit within a 3-year period.

Surveillance Visits

  • A technical inspection on each technology will be required once per year
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation, and meals. Milage is charged at £0.45 per mile
  • Assessment of the MCS Contractor’s management systems to satisfy Section 4 may be undertaken remotely for up to 2 out of every 3 years. At least every third year an assessment shall be undertaken during a physical visit to the Contractor’s trading address.
  • Where the MCS Contractor is also certified to ISO 9001 by a Certification Body accredited to certify against that standard by UKAS, then assessment of the MCS Contractor’s management systems can be undertaken remotely for up to 4 out of every 5 years.
  • The option for assessment to be undertaken remotely shall be at the sole discretion of the SC and only where all of the following conditions are met:
    • The MCS Contractor is not running complex management systems to satisfy Section
      4 such as would be the case with larger organisations, wide geographic coverage or significant use of subcontractors
    • There is evidence from an earlier assessment that the MCS Contractor’s management systems are operating effectively.
    • There have been no significant changes in the organisation of the MCS Contractor.
    • There have been no complaints resulting in non-conformities relating to the MCS Contractor’s management systems.
    • There are no unresolved non-conformities.
    • There have been no significant changes.
    • The MCS Contractor agrees to remote assessment.
    • No major non-conformities are found during the on-site assessment.
  • SC will review the information provided and where necessary shall ask for supplementary information.
  • SC will identify any non-conformities and set appropriate improvement actions, and if a number of areas are subject to non-conformity or significant change SC will conduct a physical audit at the MCS Contractors trading address.

Increase of scope 

  • Process of your application for increase of scope
  • A document review of your existing system and visit
  • Assessment for extension to scope must include a site assessment covering all technologies applied for. The office records and systems supporting the extension to scope may be assessed either by remote review or a visit to the MCS Contractor’s office.
  • Technical inspections for each technology
  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am-5pm)
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals. Milage is charged at £0.45 per mile
  • Includes first certificate, SC mark of registration to use on your company collateral (there will be a small admin charge for any changes or additional certifications)

In the event of the client cancelling any planned visits within 30 days of the appointment the full amount will be payable.

A Void Fee of 100% of our fee will be applicable for:

  • Failure to be present or available when the assessor / auditor has attended at the scheduled appointment
  • If a location specific retrofit design for the relevant technology has not been received 24 hours before the technical assessment
  • If the installer is not in possession of all relevant paperwork i.e. the installer pack
  • The site is unsuitable, this includes unsafe conditions, home owner/tenant is uncooperative or has not been informed or can’t access the property
  • The installer/installation team are unreasonably late or not available
  • The installer/installation team are uncooperative
  • The measures booked to inspect are the incorrect measures or the installation is not at the right stage (pre/mid/post) for the inspection
  • The installation materials have not turned up, delaying the installation

CERTIFICATION

Application Review 

All applications are subject to an application review prior to any assessments taking place. During the application review, we will carry out background checks on your business to ensure that there is no evidence of ‘Phoenix Companies’. A Phoenix Company suggests there are previous non-compliance issues that have not been addressed and are being avoided by the applicant. These checks include but are not limited to:

  • Identifying companies that have changed their name
  • Identifying company Directors that have set up multiple companies in the same industry
  • Reviewing related companies, dissolved companies and non-trading companies
  • Reviewing companies already certified with us that may have compliance issues
  • Identifying if the company has moved from another certification body

If the evidence suggests the company, related companies and company Directors have previous non-compliance issues with their previous certification body, TrustMark or any other source of intel, the application will not proceed. Monies will be refunded, minus the application review fee.

If the evidence shows that company, related companies and company Directors have current non-compliance issues with ourselves, the application will be put on hold until until issues are satisfactorily resolved.

Certification

The MCS Contractor shall use the Certification Mark(s) only in accordance with their Accredited Certification Body’s’ instructions. An example of the Certification Mark that can be used for this Scheme.

Following a satisfactory assessment, technical inspections, verification of the assessment report, and completion of any corrective actions, we shall issue a certificate, which is valid for one year.

For each of the MCS technologies for which certification is being sought, a Contractor may use the following process for one installation per technology only.

  • The Contractor applies to SC for certification under MCS.
  • Compliance Assessment of the Contractor is undertaken by SC and includes assessment of an installation for which the Contractor has been fully responsible and has commissioned in accordance with the applicable MCS Installation Standard.
  • At this stage the Contractor is not MCS certificated for that technology. The Contractor proposes corrective actions for any non-conformities raised by SC.
  • SC assesses the corrective actions that have been implemented and, once fully satisfied that the relevant requirements of MCS have been met, certificates the Contractor.
  • The MCS Contractor then re-commissions the installation used for this Compliance Assessment and issues a new commissioning certificate.
  • The MCS Contractor registers the installation on the MCS Installation Database (MID) and generates an MCS certificate which must use the date of re-commissioning.

Subsequent yearly certificates are issued subject to continued satisfactory performance being achieved through surveillance assessments, which shall be carried out one inspection per technology.

If a major non-conformance is found during the initial assessment process a recommendation for certification shall not be made until either corrective action has been verified by a site visit (which may be chargeable) or appropriate documentary evidence of corrective action has been submitted and approved by us.

If a major non-conformance is found during surveillance assessment you shall be required to carry out corrective action within an agreed timescale, which shall normally be no greater than 21 days following the assessment.

Non-Conformance

Where non-conformities cannot be resolved within 6 weeks of the original visit date, certification of the Contractor may be suspended or withdrawn.

  • Observation: A finding from which there is a possibility of moving towards a non-conformity if not correct. We would identify this as a ‘recommendation’. This would not prevent certification from being issued, however we would expect to see this addressed by the next assessment.
  • Minor non-conformity: either a failure to meet one requirement of a clause of the reference standard or a single observed lapse in following one item of a company procedure.
  • Major non conformity: the absence or the total breakdown of a system to meet the requirements of a clause of the reference standard, or a number of minor non-conformities listed against one clause, can represent a systematic breakdown of the requirement and thus be considered a major non-conformity.

Special Assessment Visit

We reserve the right to make an additional chargeable Special Assessment Visit in the following circumstances:

  • Where assessment is required verify the closure of Major non- conformances
  • At initial evaluation the condition of the management system or scope of certification is not as described during the application stage
  • Significant modifications to the management system have taken place
  • Significant changes to the organisation, scope or processes have occurred which were not notified to us in sufficient time prior to the standard assessment visit
  • Where we are required to investigate information on serious accidents or a breach of legislation resulting in the involvement of the regulatory authority
  • If you are a TrustMark registered business, a TrustMark notification to us that highlights concern as an Installer of Interest Assessment Plan

TRUSTMARK

Any applicants wishing to gain TrustMark registration are advised to read their downloadable guidance found via this link to ensure the scheme requirements are fully understood. Please note all applications will be audited against its standards to confirm compliance before registration is granted:

Helpful Information, Guidance & Advice For Work Done Around Your Home (trustmark.org.uk)

Any installer who does not declare their outstanding Technical Monitoring fails during the application process, runs the risk of being automatically removed from the TrustMark scheme.

Installer of Interest Assessment Plan

Where there is an occasion that TrustMark have highlighted a high percentage of fails via their Technical Monitoring we reserve the right to move the organisation onto our “Installer of Interest Assessment Plan”.

We have designed this programme to provide Installers who have been identified as problematic with a chance to improve so that they can retain certification if they demonstrate improvement, rather than move to an immediate removal of their MCS and TrustMark registration

  • This is a short term assessment programme in which the Installation Organisation will have the opportunity to demonstrate their move to reduce TM fails so that they can continue to retain their certification and TrustMark registration.
  • The programme has been designed to ensure that the Installation Organisation is moving towards sustainable improvement and reduce risk of TM fails
  • The installer organisation will be required to:
    • Evidence corrective actions via a Special Assessment Visit to address the route cause of the TM fails
    • Submit corrective actions through an improvement plan to demonstrate how the business intends to improve moving forward as agreed during the Special Assessment Visit
    • Evidence to show an improvement in technical fails
  • There is an additional fee to be moved onto the “Installer of Interest Assessment Plan” to cover the additional assessment and administration time required to closely monitor the installer organisation.
    • £995 + VAT (inclusive of expenses) for a Special Assessment Visit
    • £595 +VAT administration management fee per month
    • Once the improvement plan is in place a technical inspection will be required against each measure. We will offer for Special Assessment Inspections to coincide with your surveillance assessments.
      • If this can’t be coordinated to coincide with surveillance visits each Special Assessment Technical Inspection will be £500 +VAT
    • MCS Certification and TrustMark Registration will be removed where an organisation is
      • Not willing to move onto the Installer of Interest Assessment Plan when required
      • Fails to comply with the agreed corrective actions from the Special Assessment Visit
      • Becomes uncooperative and unresponsive
    • Once we are satisfied that the Installation Organisation has demonstrated a change in their procedures to address the root cause to reduce risk, they will be moved back onto our standard surveillance programme.

MCS Certification Agreement and Surveillance

  • During the Compliance Assessment Process The MCS Contractor will ensure
    • A Nominee and Nominated Technical Person (NTP) must be present or available throughout the Compliance Assessment process
    • The installer has possession and validation of an EEM design identified as being in compliance with PAS 2035, for each specific installation location (PAS 2030, Clause 5)
  • As the client you will always fulfil the certification requirements including implementing appropriate changes when they are communicated by SC
  • If the certification applies to ongoing production, the certified product continues to fulfil the product requirements
  • As our client you will make all necessary arrangements for
    • the conduct of the evaluation and surveillance (if required), including provision for examining documentation and records, and access to the relevant equipment, location(s), area(s), personnel, and subcontractors;
    •  investigation of complaints;
    • the participation of observers, if applicable;
  • The client makes claims regarding certification consistent with the scope of certification;
  • The client does not use its product certification in such a manner as to bring SC into disrepute and does not make any statement regarding its product certification that SC may consider misleading or unauthorised;
  • Upon suspension, withdrawal, or termination of certification, the client discontinues its use of all advertising matter that contains any reference thereto and takes action as required by the certification scheme (e.g. the return of certification documents) and takes any other required measure;
  • If the client provides copies of the certification documents to others, the documents shall be reproduced in their entirety or as specified in the certification scheme;
  • In the event that a non-conformity is raised by SC based on evidence obtained in circumstances other than surveillance activities (e.g. from complaints or third-party feedback), the MCS Contractor will be required to resolve them in a timescale defined by the SC, not normally more than 6 weeks from the date raised with the MCS Contractor.
    • Where such non-conformities cannot be resolved within 6 weeks the MCS certification would be subject to additional surveillance activities (remote, office audit or site visit an appropriate), suspension or withdrawal.
  • In making reference to its product certification in communication media such as documents, brochures or advertising, the client complies with the requirements of SC or as specified by the certification scheme;
  • The client complies with any requirements that may be prescribed in the certification scheme relating to the use of marks of conformity, and on information related to the product;
  • The client keeps a record of all complaints made known to it relating to compliance with certification requirements and makes these records available to SC when requested, and
    • takes appropriate action with respect to such complaints and any deficiencies found in products that affect compliance with the requirements for certification;
    • documents the actions taken;
  • The client informs SC, without delay, of changes that may affect its ability to conform with the certification requirements.
    • the legal, commercial, organisational status or ownership,
    • organisation and management (e.g. key managerial, decision-making or technical staff),
    • modifications to the product or the production method,
    • contact address and production sites,
    • major changes to the quality management system.
  • For surveillance
    • Where the MCS Contractor has completed more than five installations in total:
      a) SC will the MCS Installation Database (MID) to select at least five installations at random that were normally commissioned within the last year.
      b) The list of installations is sent to the MCS Contractor and the MCS Contractor is asked to choose one and arrange the site visit with the consumer.
    • If the MCS Contractor has not carried out installation work for a particular technology during the previous year, the surveillance may proceed on the basis of a desktop review of capability at the MCS Contractor’s office, subject to the MCS Contractor agreeing to inform the SC the next time they accept a contract to carry out an installation of the type concerned. When such an installation goes ahead, an additional site Compliance Assessment shall be required.
    • A desktop review shall not be undertaken for more than one consecutive surveillance. Where the MCS Contractor has not carried out installation work for a particular technology for 2 consecutive years then certification shall be terminated and only reinstated as if Initial Certification (clause 4.1).
    • Where a surveillance programme is via the minimum annual assessment, this should take place during a time period that is between 2 months prior to and 4 months beyond the original date of certification.

CLIENT CHANGES

The client will inform us in writing, without delay of matters effecting the capability of the managements system to continue to fulfil the requirements of the standard used for certification.

These include, for example

  • The MCS Contractor shall give notice in writing to the Accredited Certification Body of any change to any significant particulars. These include but are not limited to
    • Director(s)
    • Trading status, title or address
    • Nominee
    • Nominated Technical Person(s)
    • Changes relating to the legal, commercial, organisational status or ownership, organisation and management (e.g. key managerial, decision-making, or technical staff).
    • Contact address and additional sites.
    • Information on incidents such as a serious accident, or a serious breach of legislation necessitating the involvement of the competent regulatory authority.

Such notice shall be given to the Accredited Certification Body within 30 days of any change becoming effective.

Where the changes are such that the conditions under which certification was granted are significantly affected, the MCS Contractor will be advised of the actions, and any associated fees, that will be required to be completed to maintain certification.

Please note that all details of applicants and certificate holders may be shared by the Certification Body with

MCS Service Company Ltd
The operators of any Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI) ‘code of conduct’ for the purposes of complaints handling and for compiling statistics on this Scheme
UK government departments and their agencies

HEAD OFFICE ASSESSMENT AND TECHNOLOGY INSPECTIONS

For initial certification or a scope extension, technical inspections MUST be conducted on the same day or days following of the head office assessment to ensure that the validity of the assessment is maintained for the chosen technologies.

FEES AND CHARGES

Separate quotations are provided for the various stages of certification which will include:

  • Process of your application for certification
  • Stage one document review of your existing system
  • Stage two assessment a sample of your existing projects
  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am-5pm)
  • All assessments are carried out remotely unless requested to be at site.
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals. Milage is charged at £0.45 per mile
  • Includes first certificate, SC mark of registration to use on your company collateral (there will be a small admin charge for any changes or additional certifications)
  • Three year certification
  • Two years of surveillance assessments

Payments and fees

Quotes and invoices are calculated using the information provided to us on your application form.

To progress to certification 100% of the invoice costs should be settled. Once settled, your application form will be sent to our Technical Team for review. Should the assessment plan change (increase or decrease in the number of days) we will send you an invoice for the additional days, or refund you the additional payment made.

Our fees are based on a day rate of £980 + VAT.

CERTIFICATION

Following a satisfactory assessment, verification of the assessment report, and completion of any corrective actions, we shall issue a certificate, which is valid for three years.

If a major non-conformance is found during the initial assessment process a recommendation for certification shall not be made until either corrective action has been verified by a site visit (which may be chargeable) or appropriate documentary evidence of corrective action has been submitted and approved by us.

If a major non-conformance is found during surveillance assessment you shall be required to carry out corrective action within an agreed timescale, which shall normally be no greater than 21 days following the assessment.

Where there are a high number of non-conformances (i.e. more than 5), there will be additional charges to review these due to the time it takes for additional assessment.

Non-Conformance

Non-conformance is the absence or failure to implement and maintain one or more requirements of the reference standard under assessment.

Types of Non-Conformity

Defined in BS EN ISO/IEC 17021-1 a non-fulfilment of a requirement a non-conformity will be expressed factually and objectively in language that clearly and concisely identifies the nature and extent of the non-fulfilment and the action necessary for its correction.

  • Observation: A finding from which there is a possibility of moving towards a non-conformity if not correct. We would identify this as a ‘recommendation’. This would not prevent certification from being issued, however we would expect to see this addressed by the next assessment.
  • Minor non-conformity: either a failure to meet one requirement of a clause of the reference standard or a single observed lapse in following one item of a company procedure.
  • Major non conformity: the absence or the total breakdown of a system to meet the requirements of a clause of the reference standard, or a number of minor non-conformities listed against one clause, can represent a systematic breakdown of the requirement and thus be considered a major non-conformity.

Special Assessment Visit

We reserve the right to make an additional chargeable Special Assessment Visit in the following circumstances:

  • Where assessment is required verify the closure of major non- conformances
  • At initial evaluation the condition of the management system or scope of certification is not as described during the application stage
  • Significant modifications to the management system have taken place
  • Significant changes to the organisation, scope or processes have occurred which were not notified to us in sufficient time prior to the standard assessment visit
  • Where we are required to investigate information on serious accidents or a breach of legislation resulting in the involvement of the regulatory authority
  • A series of events such as a high number of non-conformances and complaints raised over a 12 month period

ISO 19650 Certification Agreement

  • As the client you will always fulfil the certification requirements including implementing appropriate changes when they are communicated by SC
  • If the certification applies to ongoing production, the certified product continues to fulfil the product requirements
  • As our client you will make all necessary arrangements for
    • the conduct of the evaluation and surveillance (if required), including provision for examining documentation and records, and access to the relevant equipment, location(s), area(s), personnel, and subcontractors;
    • investigation of complaints;
    • the participation of observers, if applicable;
  • The client makes claims regarding certification consistent with the scope of certification;
  • The client does not use its product certification in such a manner as to bring SC into disrepute and does not make any statement regarding its product certification that SC may consider misleading or unauthorised;
  • Upon suspension, withdrawal, or termination of certification, the client discontinues its use of all advertising matter that contains any reference thereto and takes action as required by the certification scheme (e.g. the return of certification documents) and takes any other required measure;
  • If the client provides copies of the certification documents to others, the documents shall be reproduced in their entirety or as specified in the certification scheme;
  • In making reference to its product certification in communication media such as documents, brochures or advertising, the client complies with the requirements of SC or as specified by the certification scheme;
  • The client complies with any requirements that may be prescribed in the certification scheme relating to the use of marks of conformity, and on information related to the product;
  • The client keeps a record of all complaints made known to it relating to compliance with certification requirements and makes these records available to SC when requested, and
    • takes appropriate action with respect to such complaints and any deficiencies found in products that affect compliance with the requirements for certification;
    • documents the actions taken;
  • The client informs SC, without delay, of changes that may affect its ability to conform with the certification requirements.
    • the legal, commercial, organisational status or ownership,
    • organisation and management (e.g. key managerial, decision-making or technical staff),
    • modifications to the product or the production method,
    • contact address and production sites,
    • major changes to the quality management system.

How long certification takes

There are many factors that impact the certification timeline, these are largely on our customer side as we have set timeframes that we work within that ensures we provide the excellent customer service and to manage your expectations.

The time frames are detailed below:

  • Once you have paid, we will contact you within 72 hours to arrange your assessment dates.
  • Assessment Reports will be submitted no more than 48 hours after the event. This is also when you will receive details of any non-conformances found.
  • When you respond to a non-conformance, we will review your evidence no later than 10 working days.
  • When all non-conformances are closed, we will send your reports for independent Verification. We will complete this within 5 working days.
  • Once the Verification is complete, we will complete our Certification Decision Making Report. We aim to have this completed within 5 working days.
  • Upon the decision to grant certification, we will produce your certificate which must pass our quality checks. We aim to have this completed within 5 working days.

The above time frames will be longer for the following reasons:

  • Poor evidence is submitted to us against any raised non-conformance resulting in these being rejected and having to be re-submitted.
  • Additional non-conformances are raised during Technical Verification and Certification Decision Making.

ISO 9001, 45001, 45001

FEES AND CHARGES

Your first quote covers your first certification cycle which includes your Initial Certification, first 2 Surveillance Audits and Recertification. Subsequent quotes will 2 Surveillance Audits and Recertification:

Initial Certification

  • Processing of your application for certification
  • Stage 1 audit
  • Stage 2 audit
  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am-5pm)
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals
  • Includes first certificate, SC mark of registration to use on your company collateral (there will be a small admin charge for any changes or additional certifications)

Surveillance

  • Surveillance audit
  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am-5pm)
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals

Recertification 

  • Recertification audit
  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am-5pm)
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals

Increase of Scope 

  • The processing of your application for certification to increase your scope
  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am-5pm)
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals

Payments and Fees 

To progress to certification 100% of the invoice costs should be settled. Audit dates will not be confirmed until the invoice is paid.

Our fees are based on a day rate of £980 + VAT.

The cost for certification is calculated using the following:

  • Audit Fee Per Day – £980 + VAT
  • Additional audit time if required – dependant based on type, duration and number of audits.
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals. Mileage is charged at £0.45 per mile

CERTIFICATION

Application Review 

All applications are subject to an application review prior to any audits taking place. We use this information to:

  • Confirm we can deliver the audits to your required scope
  • Ensure any differences in understanding are resolved
  • Help us develop your audit programme
  • Ensure all information is taken into account to deliver a well planned audit

Following the application review, we will either:

  • Accept your application and send you a quote for certification or
  • Decline your application and inform you of the reasons why

Audit Programme

You will be provided with an Audit Programme that clearly defines the audit requirements.

Your Initial Certification Audit Programme will include a 2 stage initial audit, surveillance audits for the first and second years and a recertification audit in the third year prior to the expiration of your certification.

Subsequent Audit Programmes will be issued after your recertification and will cover the next three years of certification, i.e. 2 surveillance audits and a recertification audit.

Certification 

Following satisfactory audits, closure of non-conformances and internal certification decision making, we shall issue a certificate, which is valid for 3 years.

Subsequent certificates are issued subject to continued satisfactory performance being achieved through surveillance and recertification audits.

Expired certificates can be restored within 6 months providing outstanding recertification activities are completed.

Stage 1 Audit

This objective of this audit is to:

  • Review your management system and documented information
  • Evaluate your site specific conditions and determine preparedness for stage 2
  • Review your understanding regarding the requirements of the standard
  • Obtain necessary information regarding the scope of the management system
  • Review the allocation of resources and agree the details of stage 2
  • Gain understanding of your management system and site operations in context
  • Evaluate if the internal audits and management reviews are being planned and performed, and the level of implementation substantiates you are ready for stage 2.

After this audit, we will provide you with our conclusion of the fulfilment of the stage 1 objectives and confirm readiness for stage 2. We will also include any areas of concern that could be classified as a non-conformity during stage 2.

The outcome may impact the stage 2 audit. For example, if a major change of the management system is required, a repeat of the stage 1 audit may be appropriate.

The interval between the stage 1 and stage 2 audit should be planned to allow you to resolve any areas of concern identified during the stage 1 audit.

Stage 2 Audit

The purpose of this audit is to evaluate the implementation and effectiveness of your management system, including but not limited to:

  • Information and evidence about conformity to all requirements
  • Performance monitoring, measuring, reporting and reviewing against key performance objectives and targets
  • The management systems ability and performance regarding meeting of applicable statutory, regulatory and contractual requirements
  • Operational control of your processes
  • Internal auditing and management review
  • Management responsibility for your policies.

After this audit, we will analyse all information and audit evidence gathered during stage 1 and stage 2 to review the audit findings and agree on audit conclusions. This will be presented to you in a written audit report identifying your recommendation for certification, opportunities for improvement and areas of non-conformity.

Surveillance Audit

Surveillance Audits will be conducted at least once a calendar year, except in recertification years. The date of the first surveillance audit following initial certification shall not me more than 12 months from the certification decision date.

This audit is designed to show that you are continuing to fulfil the management system requirements. This audit includes:

  • Internal audits and management review
  • A review of actions taken on nonconformities identified during the previous audit
  • Complaints handling
  • Effectiveness of the management system regarding your objective and intended results of the respective management system
  • Progress of planned activities aimed at continual improvement
  • Continual operational control
  • Review of any changes
  • Use of marks and/or any other reference to certification.

Recertification Audit

Recertification Audits must be carried out in a timely manner prior to the certification expiry date.

The purpose of this audit is to confirm continued conformity and effectiveness of the management system as a whole, and its continued relevance and applicability for the scope of certification.

This audit includes:

  • A review of previous surveillance audit reports
  • The effectiveness of the management systems in its entirety in the light of internal and external changes and its continued relevance and applicability to the scope of certification
  • Demonstrated commitment to maintain the effectiveness and improvement of the management system in order to enhance overall performance
  • The effectiveness of the management system, with regards to achieving your objectives and the intended results of the respective management reviews.

If there have been significant changes to the management system, the organisation or the context in which the management system is operating, a stage 1 audit may be required.

If the recertification audit did not happen or we are unable to verify the implementation of corrections and corrective actions for any major non-conformity prior to your certification expiry date, recertification shall not be recommended and certification will not be extended.

Nonconformity 

A nonconformity is a non-fulfilment of a requirement.

Major nonconformity – A nonconformity that affects the capability of the management system to achieve the intended results. Nonconformities could be classified as major in the following circumstances:

  • If there is significant doubt that effective process control is in place, or that products or services will meet specified requirements
  • A number of minor nonconformities associated with the same requirement or issue could demonstrate a systematic failure and thus constitute a major nonconformity

If a major nonconformity is found during the initial assessment process a recommendation for certification shall not be made until either corrective action has been verified by a site visit or appropriate documentary evidence of corrective action has been submitted and approved by us. We must be able to verify the implementation of corrections and corrective action within 6 months of the last day of the stage 2 audit. If this is not achieved then another stage 2 audit must be carried out.

If a major nonconformity is found during a surveillance audit,  corrective action will need to be verified by a site visit or appropriate documentary evidence of corrective action has been submitted and approved by us. We must be able to verify the implementation of corrections and corrective action within 3 months of the last day of the audit. If this is not achieved then certification will be suspended.

If a major nonconformity is found during a recertification audit, the corrective action must be implemented and verified prior to the expiration of certification. If we cannot verify this, certification will not be extended and you will be informed of the consequences.

A major nonconformity would also be raised if the organisation breached a legal requirement.

Minor nonconformity – A nonconformity that does not affect the capability of the management system to achieve the intended results.

If a minor nonconformity is found during the initial assessment process a recommendation for certification shall not be made until a corrective action plan has been submitted, verified by approved by us. We must be able to verify the plan within 6 months of the last day of the stage 2 audit. If this is not achieved then another stage 2 audit must be carried out.

If a minor nonconformity is found during the recertification audit process, a recommendation for certification shall not be made until a corrective action plan has been submitted, verified by approved by us. We must be able to verify the plan before the certification expires.

If a minor nonconformity is found during a surveillance audit,  correct actions will be verified by approved by us during the following audit.

Certification Decision 

Certification Decision is a process we carry out internally to grant, refuse, expand or reduce scope of certification, suspend or restore certification, withdraw certification or renew certification. Certification will not be granted until this process has been successfully carried out.

Certification Transfers

If you already hold a certificate with another Certification Body, you may be eligible to transfer your certification to us, and pick up the Audit Programme where you left off. If you wish to do this, you can apply for a transfer via our application form. You will be required to provide us with your latest audit report, and any information related to your corrective actions. The information will be used to reconfirm or adjust your Audit Programme. We will not accept transfers from:

  • Unaccredited certification bodies
  • If you current certification is suspended

How Long Certification Takes 

There are many factors that impact the certification timeline, these are largely on our customer side as we have set timeframes that we work within that ensures we provide the excellent customer service and to manage your expectations.

The time frames are detailed below:

  • Once you have paid, we will contact you within 72 hours to arrange your audit dates.
  • Audit Reports will be submitted no more than 48 hours after the event. This is also when you will receive details of any non-conformances found.
  • When you respond to a non-conformance, we will review your evidence no later than 10 working days. Please note we will only review your non-conformances when you have submitted corrective action, preventative action, root cause and relevant evidence for ALL non-conformances relating to your report.
  • When all non-conformances are closed, we will complete our Certification Decision Making Report. We aim to have this completed within 5 working days.
  • Upon the decision to grant certification, we will produce your certificate which must pass our quality checks. We aim to have this completed within 5 working days.

The above time frames will be longer for the following reasons:

  • Poor evidence is submitted to us against any raised non-conformance resulting in these being rejected and having to be re-submitted.
  • Additional non-conformances are raised during  Certification Decision Making.

FEES AND CHARGES

Certification and assessment

You will receive a quotation for the initial assessment process and surveillance visits over a three-year period, which will include:

Initial Certification

  • Process of your application for certification
  • A document review of your existing system and visit
  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am-5pm)
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses are subject to costs in relation to travelling, overnight accommodation and meals at a reasonable rate. Milage is charged at £0.45 per mile.
  • Includes first certificate, Simply mark of registration to use on your company collateral (there will be a small admin charge for any changes or additional certifications)

Surveillance Visits

  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am-5pm)
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals. Milage is charged at £0.45 per mile

In the event of the client cancelling any planned visits within 30 days of the appointment the full amount will be payable

CERTIFICATION

We always advise time between Stage one and Stage two assessments to allow the system to become fully operational and resolve any weaknesses identified in Stage one.

Following a satisfactory assessment, verification of the assessment report, and completion of any corrective actions, we shall issue a certificate, which is valid for three years.

The certificate is issued subject to continued satisfactory performance being achieved through surveillance assessments, which shall be carried out at least once a year, with a re-assessment carried out after three years.

Where a system has been only implemented recently, an additional assessment may be required.

If a major non-conformance is found during the initial assessment process a recommendation for certification shall not be made until either corrective action has been verified by a site visit or appropriate documentary evidence of corrective action has been submitted and approved by us.

If a major non-conformance is found during surveillance assessment the client shall be required to carry out corrective action within an agreed timescale, which shall normally be no greater than six weeks following the assessment

Non-Conformance

Non-conformance is the absence or failure to implement and maintain one or more requirements of the reference standard under assessment.

There are two grades of non-conformance, namely major and minor.

Major Non-Conformance

The absence or failure to implement and maintain one or more requirements of the management system reference standard, or a situation which would, based on objective evidence, raise significant doubt as to the capability of the system to achieve the policy and objectives of the system.

A major non-conformance would also be raised if the organisation breached a legal requirement.

Certification shall not be granted or continued to be certified until all major non-conformities have been corrected and the corrective actions verified.

Minor Non-Conformance

A vague or unrevealing element of the management system, which may result in a small discrepancy that could be corrected with minimal organisational, operational, or technical change and within a reasonable time frame, (as opposed to a major non-conformance where the facility has not addressed or adequately addressed the criterion).

Special Assessment Visit

We reserve the right to make an additional Special Assessment Visit in the following circumstances:

  • Where assessment is required verify the closure of Major non- conformances
  • At initial evaluation the condition of the management system or scope of certification is not as described during the application stage
  • Significant modifications to the management system have taken place
  • Significant changes to the organisation, scope or processes have occurred which were not notified to us in sufficient time prior to the standard assessment visit
  • Where we are required to investigate information on serious accidents or a breach of legislation resulting in the involvement of the regulatory authority

TERMS AND CONDITIONS OF CONTRACT FLEXI-ORB (UNACCREDITED)

The Flexi-Orb Scheme Rules

Our terms and conditions also require you to comply with the membership requirements, and scheme rules 

FEES AND CHARGES

Separate quotations are provided for the various stages of certification which will include:

Initial Certification

  • The processing of your application for certification
  • On-site Office Compliance Assessment
  • On-site Technical Inspections for each technology applied for
  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am – 5pm)
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals
  • Includes first certificate, SC mark of registration to use on your company collateral (there will be a small admin charge for any changes or additional certifications)

Surveillance Visits

  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am – 5pm)
  • The number of surveillance visits required is based on the requirements of INS-001 clause 5.5
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals

Increase of Scope 

  • The processing of your application for certification to increase your scope
  • On-site Office Compliance Assessment
  • On-site Technical Inspections for each technology applied for
  • An assessor-day rate based on normal working hours (9am – 5pm)
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals

Payments and Fees

To progress to certification 100% of the invoice costs should be settled.

Our fees are based on a day rate of £980 + VAT.

The cost for certification is calculated using the following:

  • Application Fee – £150 + VAT
  • Office Compliance Assessment – £980 + VAT
  • Up to 3 Technical Inspections – £980 + VAT
  • Desktop Review (if required) – £500 + VAT
  • Quotes do not include assessor expenses which may include travelling, travel time, overnight accommodation and meals. Mileage is charged at £0.45 per mile

CERTIFICATION

Application Review 

All applications are subject to an application review prior to any assessments taking place. During the application review, we will carry out background checks on your business to ensure that there is no evidence of ‘Phoenix Companies’. A Phoenix Company suggests there are previous non-compliance issues that have not been addressed and are being avoided by the applicant. These checks include but are not limited to:

  • Identifying companies that have changed their name
  • Identifying company Directors that have set up multiple companies in the same industry
  • Reviewing related companies, dissolved companies and non-trading companies
  • Reviewing companies already certified with us that may have compliance issues
  • Identifying if the company has moved from another certification body

If the evidence suggests the company, related companies and company Directors have previous non-compliance issues with their previous certification body, TrustMark or any other source of intel, the application will not proceed. Monies will be refunded, minus the application review fee.

If the evidence shows that company, related companies and company Directors have current non-compliance issues with ourselves, the application will be put on hold until until issues are satisfactorily resolved.

Certification

Following satisfactory assessments, closure of non-conformances, internal verification of the assessment report and internal certification decision making, we shall issue a certificate, which is valid for 3 years. Please note, a 6 month certificate may be issued (see Moving Certification Body section for further information).

Subsequent certificates are issued subject to continued satisfactory performance being achieved through surveillance assessments.

We will not allow a certificate to remain valid if you do not provide us with installation to inspect for 2 consecutive years. Your certificate will be removed unless there are extenuating circumstances.

Non-Conformance

Non-conformance is the absence or failure to implement and maintain one or more requirements of the reference standard under assessment. Corrective action, preventative action and supporting evidence must be submitted to us no more than 4 weeks from the inspection date. If your response is not accepted by us within 6 weeks of the assessment date, you will be required to be reassessed in full at a cost to yourself.

Surveillance Visits Agreement

It is part of the Flexi-Orb scheme that Surveillance Visits are carried out in line with INS-001 clause 5.5.

If no installations have been carried out in the preceding year and there are unlikely, from the evidence, that any installations are likely to be carried out within 6 months of the surveillance due date, and you want to continue with certification, we will carry out a Office Assessment only, with the condition that as soon as you starts to install, we are notified and we will then carry out the Technical Inspections within 2 months of the commissioning of the first installation. If you do not inform us of your installs, we will suspend certification until the assessment have be carried out and non-conformities are closed.

We will not allow a certificate to remain valid if you do not provide us with installation to inspect for 2 consecutive years. Your certificate will be removed unless there are extenuating circumstances.

We reserve the right to carry out random sampling in addition to surveillance visits if we have any concerns about your business.

Moving Certification Bodies

Should you be moving to from another Certification Body, we will require you and your previous Certification Body to declare:

  • Why you are moving Certification Bodies
  • If you have any outstanding non-conformities, and if applicable, the reason for them not being closed out
  • If you have any outstanding complaints with your current certification body or an ADR provider, if so, why are they still open
  • That all payments are settled with your previous certification body
  • You have no outstanding CCJ’s with your previous certification body
  • You are not in or about to go into receivership
  • You do not present any reputational risks to the scheme

You and your current Certification Body will also be required to send us copies of your last assessment reports to support the above criteria.

If your current Certification Body does not supply us with the above information, we will only be able to provide you with a 6 month certificate. Should the information not be received within 4 months, we will contact you to arrange a Desktop Review. (Please see the Desktop Review Section for further information).

Desktop Review

If you are moving Certification Bodies and we have not been provided with the requested documentation, we are required to carry out a Desktop Review to review the evidence against the missing information to ensure the integrity of the scheme. This is chargeable (See the Fees section for further information).

Flexi-Orb Certification Agreement

  • As the client you will always fulfil the certification requirements including implementing appropriate changes when they are communicated by SC
  • If the certification applies to ongoing production, the certified product continues to fulfil the product requirements
  • As our client you will make all necessary arrangements for
    • the conduct of the evaluation and surveillance (if required), including provision for examining documentation and records, and access to the relevant equipment, location(s), area(s), personnel, and subcontractors;
    • investigation of complaints;
    • the participation of observers, if applicable;
  • The client makes claims regarding certification consistent with the scope of certification;
  • The client does not use its product certification in such a manner as to bring SC into disrepute and does not make any statement regarding its product certification that SC may consider misleading or unauthorised;
  • Upon suspension, withdrawal, or termination of certification, the client discontinues its use of all advertising matter that contains any reference thereto and takes action as required by the certification scheme (e.g. the return of certification documents) and takes any other required measure;
  • If the client provides copies of the certification documents to others, the documents shall be reproduced in their entirety or as specified in the certification scheme;
  • In making reference to its product certification in communication media such as documents, brochures or advertising, the client complies with the requirements of SC or as specified by the certification scheme;
  • The client complies with any requirements that may be prescribed in the certification scheme relating to the use of marks of conformity, and on information related to the product;
  • The client keeps a record of all complaints made known to it relating to compliance with certification requirements and makes these records available to SC when requested, and
    • takes appropriate action with respect to such complaints and any deficiencies found in products that affect compliance with the requirements for certification;
    • documents the actions taken;
  • The client informs SC, without delay, of changes that may affect its ability to conform with the certification requirements.
    • the legal, commercial, organisational status or ownership,
    • organisation and management (e.g. key managerial, decision-making or technical staff),
    • modifications to the product or the production method,
    • contact address and production sites,
    • major changes to the quality management system.

How Long Certification Takes

There are many factors that impact the certification timeline, these are largely on our customer side as we have set timeframes that we work within that ensures we provide the excellent customer service and to manage your expectations.

The time frames are detailed below:

  • Once you have paid, we will contact you within 72 hours to arrange your assessment dates.
  • Assessment Reports will be submitted no more than 48 hours after the event. This is also when you will receive details of any non-conformances found.
  • When you respond to a non-conformance, we will review your evidence no later than 10 working days. Please note we will only review your non-conformances when you have submitted corrective action, preventative action and relevant evidence for ALL non-conformances relating to your report.
  • When all non-conformances are closed, we will send your reports for independent Technical Verification. We will complete this within 5 working days.
  • Once the Technical Verification is complete, we will complete our Certification Decision Making Report. We aim to have this completed within 5 working days.
  • Upon the decision to grant certification, we will produce your certificate which must pass our quality checks. We aim to have this completed within 5 working days.

The above time frames will be longer for the following reasons:

  • Poor evidence is submitted to us against any raised non-conformance resulting in these being rejected and having to be re-submitted.
  • Additional non-conformances are raised during Technical Verification and Certification Decision Making.

TRUSTMARK

Any applicants wishing to gain TrustMark registration are advised to read their downloadable guidance found via this link to ensure the scheme requirements are fully understood. Please note all applications will be audited against its standards to confirm compliance before registration is granted:

Helpful Information, Guidance & Advice For Work Done Around Your Home (trustmark.org.uk)

Any installer who does not declare their outstanding Technical Monitoring fails during the application process, runs the risk of being automatically removed from the TrustMark scheme.