There are of course several compliance consultancies or certification bodies that you could choose to help your company with achieving product compliance related objectives - so why would you choose ours? What makes us different?
There are several things which differentiate us from other product compliance related companies and consultancies:
1. We are fully independent.
We have no tie-ups with any certification or testing bodies and so we can give completely un-biased opinions and recommendations as part of our advice - for example, we can suggest which compliance route and if applicable, which third-party certification mark we believe may be the best one for your unique circumstances and your target market. We recommend certification bodies and test laboratories based on our knowledge of the market, our experience and feedback, and we monitor the third-party certification compliance market continuously on aspects such as certification costs, timescales and lab abilities.
2. We have a key specialism in facilitating and obtaining third-party product approvals marks and investigating possible approvals routes such as UL approval for the USA, CSA certification for Canada, CB scheme for multiple country market access and other schemes and approvals marks.
We think this alone is a key differentiator from other consultancies. In the UK and other EU countries, many consultancies specialise in providing CE marking assistance for the EU market - and a large number of manufacturers choose to follow a 'self-certification' CE marking compliance route for EU market entry. Consultancies assisting with this do not need to get the product through a third-party certification process, which is much more demanding than a self-certification route because the certification mark can only be awarded at the discretion of the third-party - generally it takes longer and is more costly too. The third-party certification process is demanding, rigorous and challenging - failure at the first attempt is common for companies that are not experienced in the requirements (even those that are can find it challenging!). Whilst we do often provide assistance with the CE marking self-certification route, it really is our experience in obtaining third-party approvals which firmly sets us apart. See towards the bottom of this page for details of some of the projects we have undertaken.
3. How we work together with you.
Another differentiating factor is that we can become a temporary or ongoing extension of your company. You could think of us as your product compliance team - to call on as you need us, to advise as required. Whether on an ad-hoc basis or with a regular ongoing compliance support contract as an increasing number of our clients do. We have a team of consultants that are able to provide the required compliance expertise and support - right through from concept stage design to ongoing support throughout the product life. This 'outsourced' compliance management type of support is popular with small and medium sized companies that often do not employ safety or compliance specialists, but we also find our services are also utilised by large multi-nationals - to supplement or support their compliance departments.
4. The directors are practising consultants and this allows us to understand your unique needs and discuss with you how best to meet your needs both from a technical and commercial standpoint.
Business co-owners and directors John Showell and Mark Lindsay are practising consultants and speak to all prospective and current clients. We don't employee sales people.
We can provide a more comprehensive service and support than a single-person consultancy business can, yet we are small enough that the company directors are directly involved with clients.
5. Adding value to your business.
Compliance is just a cost and a burden and a lot of bureaucracy - right?
Well certainly it can seem that way at times, and some of the rules and regulations we encounter can seem rather opaque, overly bureaucratic, and sometimes there appears to be no discernible reason at all for the rule!
Yes, there can be an element of compliance work that is burdensome and it just has to be done in the most efficient way and at minimal cost. But you can look at compliance another way - as we try to - and turn that burden/cost perception around by looking at opportunities to add value to a business using the compliance process - whether that be by investing in a well recognised and respected third-party certification mark to access a new market - which can help gain extra sales and larger/better customers - or perhaps for example by adding a new safety feature.
Safety features can really help to differentiate your product offering in the marketplace and can add extra profit margin to the sale price.
So - we are not just compliance experts - we can even help with devising new products, new product features and sometimes suggest new markets - that can all add value to your business.
We know what it is like to run a business and understand the commercial drivers behind the compliance process - time to market is key. Yet products must be designed and made to be safe and comply with several other regulations. Release a product too early and it may create customer complaints because of insufficient development, testing or other factors - conversely if the compliance process is not managed well, the product can be too late to market and a big sales opportunity can be lost.
Why not call us to find out more and to discuss how we may assist you?
Give us the chance to be your compliance team!
Examples of third-party approvals we have obtained on behalf of clients:
Examples of general compliance consultancy projects we have undertaken: