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Certification Counseling

As the label issuing authority, IVN counsels and accompanies both member and non-member businesses on the path to certification. Our knowhow simplifies your work with ecological/social textile and leather guidelines.

Initial Counseling

When a business first consi­ders certi­fying itself, its products or its services, several questions tend to arise: which seal is best? Which suppliers can I contract with and must all of their products be certi­fied? What aspects of produc­tion must be consi­dered and what will be inspected? Can I afford certi­fi­ca­tion?  How is consumer demand for quality seals? Where do I start?

We are happy to counsel and support you in your decision process, drawing on our consi­derable experi­ence and realistic approach.  Feel free to contact us directly during office hours at IVN: +49 30 556 160 75.

Analysis of your “as-is” situation

Once the decision has been made to apply for certi­fi­ca­tion, the question arises whether a company is truly „ready“, in other words, whether it is at all possible to meet the requi­re­ments set by and for the standards.

Often the time and effort necessary to reorga­nize internal struc­tures and work flows is less than initi­ally antici­pated. For example, the requi­re­ment for separa­tion of certi­fied from conven­tional products does not necessa­rily require separate wareh­ouse space. However, often minor details are overlooked which are simple to imple­ment but can lead to delays or additional costs during an inspec­tion.  A good example is posting notices for emergency routes and plans. A simple telephone inter­view and your documen­ta­tion enables us to run a syste­matic check to see whether the indivi­dual compon­ents within your business already consti­tute suffi­cient basis for an inspec­tion.

Help selecting the specific quality seal best suited for you

In view of the fact that there are over 100 sustai­na­bi­lity-relevant textile and leather seals on the market, selec­ting the right seal for your specific business can be diffi­cult.  For example, a priority of certi­fi­ca­tion could be to highlight a specific sustai­na­bi­lity aspect (such as toxin-free, organic fiber, eco-electri­city). Or it might be a means for quality control to reliably exclude as many risk sources as possible. Whether an IVN certi­fi­ca­tion fits your business and if so, which one, is a subject we discuss together with you.

Help selecting the „matching“ certifier

To apply for  an IVN certi­fi­ca­tion, you have the choice from among 20 world­wide accredited testing insti­tutes and labora­to­ries. Important factors for your selec­tion can be the location of your company, the certi­fying agency’s specia­li­za­tion or the certi­fying agency used by a supplier.  We can counsel you in your decision of which certi­fier to commis­sion, how to formu­late your request for a quote and can name the contact for this certi­fying agency.

Application for product certification

In order to reliably document within a certi­fi­ca­tion system which enables subse­quent verifi­ca­tion of the flow of goods, our standards (with the excep­tion of Natur­leder) require issuing product or transac­tion certi­fi­cates for all delive­ries within the certi­fied produc­tion process.  We help you achieve a cost-effec­tive bundling of these product certi­fi­cates, explain which documents are necessary and can apply for these in your name, lesse­ning your work load.

Test inspection

For complex product flows or highly diver­si­fied supplier pools, a preli­mi­nary “test” inspec­tion is advis­able within the business to assure that the certi­fi­ca­tion itself runs smoothly.  We can schedule an on-site preli­mi­nary inspec­tion with you during which our certi­fi­ca­tion advisor runs through each produc­tion step within your company with the aim of uncovering and elimi­na­ting possible snafus.

Inspection escort

Especi­ally for that first inspec­tion, it can be helpful to have an experi­enced partner at your side. Diffe­rences in the inter­pre­ta­tion of guide­lines between you and the certi­fier can be clari­fied profes­sio­nally, produc­tion processes and flow of goods better explained.

Counseling for sourcing

An IVN certi­fi­ca­tion requires that compa­nies will either source or commis­sion all inputs, services and half finished goods used for certi­fied products from certi­fied suppliers.  Our large network and exten­sive experi­ence within the trade can be an invalu­able support in finding these suppliers. We can also help should you attempt to convince a conven­tional supplier to become certi­fied himself.