19.07.23 11:53 AM By DJ Streicher (Pr.Eng.)
In order to understand the difference between certification and test reporting, it is helpful to understand the Quality Management system and the subtleties of the terms employed in quality procedures.
Quality Management oversees a set of systems that include Quality Assurance (QA), Quality Control, and Testing.

Testing provides data that feeds into the Quality Assurance (QA) process, and it forms an integral part of Quality Control measures. 

Quality Control encompasses a set of activities, including testing, which are undertaken to ensure quality.

Quality Assurance (QA), in turn, results in the issuance of certification
Therefore, testing is a subset of certification and plays a crucial role in the process leading to a product's certification.

Different quality management systems exist. For instance, ISO 9001 is a quality management system implemented to guarantee the consistent quality of a product. ISO 17025 is a quality management system applied in laboratories to ensure that the standard of testing and subsequent reporting is consistent and up to par. Ignis Testing abides by ISO 17025 standards and is managed by ECSA professional engineers w, implying professional liability to ensure correct and genuine reporting. 

Unlike certification bodies, laboratories like Ignis Testing function as testing authorities, issuing test reports rather than certificates. These reports provide a detailed summary of measurements, results, and observations, all obtained in a controlled manner according to prescribed codes and standards. The accuracy and quality of these reports are greatly influenced by the professional conduct, integrity, and competence of our laboratory personnel.

At Ignis Testing, the test report is issued by a registered Professional Engineer. As such, the test report forms part of the supporting documentation submitted by the appointed competent fire engineer, in line with clause A19 of SANS 10400 Part A and form AZ4 in Annexure D of SANS 10400 Part A for certification.

A comprehensive quality management system must be in place for a manufacturer to issue a certificate. This system validates the test report, ensuring that the product, its components, materials, and manufacturing process align precisely with what was tested and detailed in the report.

The responsibility of ensuring the complete and accurate description of the tested product lies with the test laboratory. However, it is the manufacturer's responsibility to guarantee that the test report submitted to the engineer is valid for the delivered product.

For an in-depth explanation on accreditation of Ignis Testing read here.

DJ Streicher (Pr.Eng.)