ANSI/ISO/IEC 17024 accreditation is the premier personnel certification body accreditation worldwide. Around four million professionals hold a certification from a program accredited by the ANSI National Accreditation Board (ANAB) under ISO/IEC 17024.
The concept of competency requires mastery of technical, interpersonal, and methodological skills that include the ability to learn on one’s own, to pursue lifelong learning, and to cope with risk and change (World Bank, 2003). To prove themselves reliable, and gain the trust of their employers, clients, and partners, people need to demonstrate competency. Personnel certification is not only a way for skill acquisition but also a means to demonstrate competency. While the national workforce has traditionally remained a static portion of the population—in 1948, about 59% of Americans worked, as compared to 2018’s 63% labor force participation rate—population has grown substantially over time. Today, 328 million people reside in the US, over twice as much as the nation’s 1948 population of 147 million.
On a global level, the workforce is growing at an even-more rapid rate. With this intense level of competition, almost all professionals need to prove themselves. Clearly, now more than ever, there is a need to stand out from the crowd, and this is provided by certifications.
Certifications elevate the competencies in any industry in which they are applicable, creating a benchmark by which personnel can demonstrate their skills and knowledge. With this in mind, individuals seeking certification need to consider which programs to pursue amidst the potential surfeit of available credentialing. In some instances, it would be impractical to pursue all certifications; in others, certain certifications might not be as useful. If an employee wants to be distinguished, they need certifications that professionals and experts in their industry can trust.
ISO/IEC 17024:2012 – General Requirements for Bodies Operating Certification of Persons
Trust is not guaranteed simply because a certification body (CB) claims their program to be beneficial for an individual. The competence of a certification program needs to be supported by documented evidence. For this, ISO/IEC 17024:2012 is a dependable benchmark for quality for CB programs. Many government agencies, scheme owners, and suppliers only accept certifications that are accredited by an IAF MLA signatory.
Accreditation for Personnel Certification Bodies
Just as an individual’s attainment of a certification demonstrates their competency, accreditation demonstrates the competence of the certification body. Accreditation by ANAB is an indicator that a certification body has met the requirements of ISO/IEC 17024 thereby demonstrating its competence.
For individuals interested in certification, and for employers seeking the most qualified candidates, it is essential to look for the mark of ANSI/ANAB accreditation on programs offered by CBs that operate under ISO/IEC 17024. ANAB is a signatory to the International Accreditation Forum (IAF) Multilateral Recognition Arrangement (MLA) for ISO/IEC 17024.
The objective of the IAF MLA is to ensure that the personnel certifications granted by signatories of the MLA can be recognized by other signatories, increasing the worldwide employability of the certified professionals. Mutual recognition is based on peer evaluations between signatories to ensure each other’s accredited personnel certifications are equivalent and that each certified professional can perform the required tasks. Being recognized by the IAF provides further confidence that ANAB’s accreditation conforms to global requirements for accreditation bodies (ISO/IEC 17011: Requirements for accreditation bodies accrediting conformity assessment bodies) and that ANAB has successfully demonstrated its competence through a rigorous peer evaluation process.
ANAB Accreditation for Personnel Certification Bodies under ISO/IEC 17024
For anyone pursuing certification, looking for CBs with programs that have received ANSI/ISO/IEC 17024 accreditation provides confidence in the quality of those programs and their global acceptance. ANAB accreditation upholds a level of accountability and confidence that is bestowed upon the CB, which, in turn, is passed down to any individual who receives their certification. It is a level of trust in their competence that is granted from the highest level.
List of Personnel Certification Bodies Accredited by ANSI/ISO/IEC 17024
If you are interested in knowing which personnel certification bodies are accredited by ANSI, please refer to our Directory of Accredited Personnel (ANSI/ISO/IEC 17024) Certification Bodies, Applicants, and Suspended Certification Bodies. Note: If you are a personnel certification body interested in seeking ANSI/ISO/IEC 17024 accreditation, you first need to familiarize yourself with ANSI personnel certification Policies and Procedures. You should also obtain the ISO/IEC 17024:2012 standard, which is available on the ANSI Webstore. Additionally, it is also worthwhile to attend an ANSI Personnel Certification Accreditation Workshop hosted at the Washington, DC office to better understand the standard.