If a client is registered to an existing management system, e.g.: Quality, ISO 9001, why do we need to have person certification as well?
In many cases management system certification is enough, as you rightly state in ISO 9001, as with other standards, training is a requirement. However, for some business areas, the work of an individual is so vital to the service and in an area where technical experience MUST be demonstrated, that the individual carries the “bulk” of the service on their individual shoulders. Examples of this are Fire Risk Assessments, Electrical Repairs and as such evidence of independent assurance as to the individual’s competence is vital.

What then is the main difference in the manner in which certification is awarded to that of management system certification?
Given that assessment and eventual award of certification to an individual requires the person to demonstrate his/her technical competence and ability to demonstrate that knowledge in their application field, the focus of the independent assessment is in the testing of the individual’s knowledge within a “real” environment where he/she is working.

Whilst what you have stated sounds great, how does your Assessor performing the evaluation of the person know what he should be looking for to ensure the required competence, especially as you say, individuals that are certified, say in fire assessment, come from a specialized field of knowledge?
Another good question, each scheme that URS Persons runs for person certification is based on sourcing and evaluating experts in the relevant field. The independent experts then set-about producing criteria that the person must know and be tested upon to truly demonstrate their knowledge in a practical environment. The selection of the independent experts can take a good deal of time, as with the production of the scheme requirements.

What does ISO 17024 mean?
Like management system certification, the AB has to also ensure that its monitoring of Registrars, such as URS Persons, is consistent across all Registrars and that the registrars follow the requirements that are clearly stated in the case of persons’ certification, requirements are within ISO 17024 which URS Persons must adopt and the AB must audit URS Persons against and other registrars that have schemes that certify individuals.

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