Ensuring technical competence.

About us

About UKAS

The United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) is the sole National Accreditation Body for the United Kingdom. UKAS is recognised by government, to assess against nationally and internationally agreed standards, organisations that provide conformity assessment services such as certification, testing, inspection, calibration and verification.

Accreditation by UKAS demonstrates the competence, impartiality and performance capability of these evaluators. In short, UKAS ‘checks the checkers’.

It is Government policy to recommend the use of UKAS accredited conformity assessment services whenever this is an option. The Conformity assessment and accreditation policy in the UK requires UK conformity assessment bodies seeking accreditation to do so from UKAS as the sole NAB for the UK.

UKAS is appointed as the UK’s national accreditation body under the UK Accreditation Regulations 2009 for the purposes of Article 4(1) of RAMS (Regulation (EC) 765/2008, as amended and has effect in Great Britain), setting out the requirements for accreditation.

UKAS is independent of Government but operates under a Memorandum of Understanding with Government through the Secretary of State for Business and Trade (DBT). UKAS is licensed by DBT to use and confer the national accreditation symbols which symbolise Government recognition of the accreditation process.

UKAS is a non-profit-distributing private company, limited by guarantee. It operates as an independent body providing a public authority activity and operating in the public interest. UKAS is self-financing and charges fees to conformity assessment bodies to cover operational costs and other expenditures.

As UKAS’s sponsor department within government, DBT provides funding to undertake public interest activities (i.e. non-fee earning activities) in representing the UK’s interests in the global accreditation system.

UKAS’ involvement in international accreditation groups such as EA, IAF and ILAC, provides for mutual recognition of accreditation and accredited services. This reduces the need for multiple assessments of suppliers, and as a consequence helps to reduce barriers to trade for organisations who hold UKAS accreditation or certificates issued by a UKAS accredited body.

Video transcript

0:07 Creating trust and confidence in the products and services we all rely upon.

0:12 Standards contribute £8.2bn to the UK economy per year. (CEBR)

0:16 Quality management practices contributed £90bn to the UK economy in 2011 ~ 6% of GDP. (CEBR)

0:22 The National Measurement System (NMS) helps to increase employment by 10%-15%. Total annual sales of new products would decrease by £469m without it.

0:28 Economic impact of accreditation valued at £1bn per year. (University of Birkdeck)

0:35 The European TIC sector is predicted to be worth $85bn by 2024. The UK accounts for 20% of this revenue.

0:42 Over £622bn of goods traded in the UK rely on some measured quantity or specification.

0:47 UKAS Accreditation: Delivering Confidence in the TIC sector. Across all sectors…

  • For example, underpinning the accuracy of over 800 million pathology tests per year, used in 70% of NHS diagnoses.
  • To underpinning the reliability of over 40 million medical images per year. Used to support 80% of clinical pathways.
  • Delivering confidence in the criminal justice system. Accrediting forensic services that carry out 480,819 crime scene examinations and 415,300 fingerprints taken each year.
  • Underpinning the European food assurance market valued over USD 2.5 billion.
  • Supporting the testing of 25 million tonnes of solid fuel. The assuring the performance of renewables which now account for 10% of production and ensuring the safety of a construction industry worth just under £165 billion.

1:42 Over 30,000 assessment days per year, 3,000 accredited organisations, supporting over 30 departments with government policy, 36 new schemes in development.

1:58 Benefit from your accreditation. Demonstrate your competence to win new business. Your services recognised in over 100 economies. Internal efficiencies and less reworking.

2:12 UKAS Academy

  • Maintain your accreditation by building your capability and personal development.
  • Training courses designed to improve operational and technical management.
  • Courses on the latest standards and audit techniques.
  • Book early to ensure availability.

2:29 Looking forward to working together.