ISO/IEC 17025:2005 specifies the general requirements for a laboratory management system to carry out tests and/or calibrations, and sampling, using standard, non-standard or laboratory-developed methods. ISO 17025 is applicable to all organizations performing tests and/or calibrations including first-, second- and third-party laboratories, as well as laboratories where testing and/or calibration forms part of inspection and product certification.
Section 4 of the standard outlines the management system elements required to establish a quality management system while Section 5 addresses the proficiency of the organization to perform testing and calibration with respect to competencies, accommodation and environmental conditions, test and calibration methods and method validation, equipment, measurement traceability, sampling and handling of test and calibration items.
As ISO 17025 is the international laboratory management system standard it immediately provides a lab with international recognition while its effective implementation provides quality assurance of activities and processes which translates into better confidence and trust among customers and other interested parties. In addition, as all those requirements of ISO 9001 that are relevant to the scope of testing and calibration services have been incorporated into the standard’s requirements so testing and calibration laboratories that comply with ISO 17025:2005 are also operating in accordance with ISO 9001.
Benefits of ISO 17025 accreditation
Formal recognition of competence of a laboratory by an accreditation body in accordance with international criteria has many advantages:
- Potential increase in business due to enhanced customer confidence and satisfaction,
- Savings in terms of time and money due to reduction or elimination of the need for re-testing of products,
- Better control of laboratory operations and feedback to laboratories as to whether they have a sound Quality Assurance system and are technically competent,
- Increased confidence in testing / calibration data and personnel performing work,
- Customers can search and identify the laboratories accredited by the Irish National Accreditation Board (INAB) for their specific requirements from the Directory of Accredited Laboratories,
- Users of accredited laboratories will enjoy greater access for their products, in both domestic and international markets, when tested by accredited laboratories.
If you need to understand ISO 17025 and how to prepare for laboratory accreditation, you should think about attending our next public course. Read more and book your ISO 17025 course here or just call us on 087 9678 372.