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What is conformity assessment?

Conformity assessment refers to any activity that helps determine if a product, system or service corresponds to the requirements that are contained in a specification. A specification, often a standard, is a technical description of the characteristics that need to be fulfilled. The activity itself can be executed by an individual, a company or a test laboratory.


Find out more about the different types of conformity assessment.


Why do we need conformity assessment?

  • Governments want to protect their populations from unnecessary risks.
  • Insurers want to know that equipment will not cause loss of life or damage.
  • Buyers want proof about a product's or system's safety, performance and reliability.
  • Users of equipment and consumers want to be able to trust the product or service they are purchasing.

The need for conformity assessment is often directly related to the impact of nonconformity. The more severe the consequences, the more likely it is that society requires proof that a product or system performs as it should.


Conformity assessment provides insights into:

  • the safety, quality, efficiency and effectiveness of a product
  • whether a product fits and operates correctly with other products
  • the product's effect upon the environment (pollution, noise)
  • the economic use of materials and energy

Find out more about the IEC CA (Conformity Assessment) Systems.