The IRIS certification is ready
Brussels, Belgium – The 18th of May 2006 is an important date for the railway supplier certification in
Europe. From now on, equipment manufacturers will be able to apply for the
International Railway Industry Standard (IRIS) from the certification body of their
choice instead of going through auditing by the different system integrators.
IRIS is a globally recognized standard unique to the railway industry for the evaluation of business management systems.
It is time for a common quality standard
The ISO 9001 standard does not address the specific requirements of the railway
industry. Consequently, each system integrator is running its own audits to evaluate
and approve equipment manufacturers raising and answering almost the same
questions. Hence the urgent need for rationalization. The future is one single,
common and all-encompassing certification scheme for the sector.
IRIS – First steps towards a global quality standard
Under the leadership of independent UNIFE and with sustained support from Alstom
Transport, AnsaldoBreda, Bombardier Transportation and Siemens Transportation
Systems, IRIS intends to complement the internationally recognized ISO 9001
quality standard with the specific requirements of the railway industry.
IRIS has been modelled on similar general, yet verifiable quality standards already in
place in the aerospace, automotive, and the food industries.
Once a supplier is certified IRIS, the Rolling stock system integrators would no
longer require additional business management audits from their side.
Certification bodies ready to start the audits
Up to date, six certification bodies have been approved to perform the audits. In order
to validate the certification process, two IRIS pilot audits have been already
conducted with railway equipment manufacturers.
The standard is available on the IRIS website in English. (German and French will
follow at the end of May) along with the software “IRIS Audit tool” and “IRIS Audit
Portal” which are undergoing the last check by experts from the railway industry.
The IRIS Management Centre in Brussels manages a database which contains all
details on the approved certification bodies, the certificates (list of companies, scope
and validity), plus all the restricted information regarding the auditor performance and
the audit results (reports, scores, corrective action plans, incl. status). This restricted
information will be accessible only with the consensus of the company concerned.
Due to this set-up each client can easily request the authorization to monitor the
certification status of all the suppliers without organizing time-consuming and highlyexpensive
audits all over the world.
The IRIS Management Centre will work in close collaboration with the railway
industry and the certification bodies to ensure the fulfilment of the IRIS requirements.
IRIS is a globally recognized standard unique to the railway industry for the
evaluation of business management systems. The initiative is led by the
Association of European Railway Industries (UNIFE), supported by Alstom
Transport, Ansaldobreda, Bombardier Transportation, Faiveley Transport,
GHH, Harting Technology Group, Knorr-Bremse, Sécheron, Siemens
Transportation Systems, Voith.