Inspection bodies sometimes rely more on training and experience of the inspector than on education. Especially for scopes of limited complexity. Can this be acceptable as long as the inspection body supports such persons with relevant training, monitoring, on site-observation and requires a specified level of experience? Can specified education requirements be substituted by e.g. additional training in individual cases?

STANDARD: ISO/IEC 17020  ·  CLAUSE: 6.1.1  ·  TOPIC: Defining competence requirements


It is up to the inspection body to define the competence requirements. These shall include education requirements, but these could be very basic. Once defined the requirements apply until revised, e.g. as a consequence of considerations made at the management review. Note that as competence is a purpose of the standard, there are supposed to be objectives related to competence, and these objectives are to be reviewed as part of the managements review. If the available competence is not enough to guarantee reliable results, inspection services should not be offered.