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Sheffield Assay Office maintains UKAS Accreditation

Published: 6th June 2019

We are pleased to announce that the Sheffield Assay Office has received official confirmation from UKAS (the United Kingdom Accreditation Service) that our accreditation to the internationally recognised standard ISO/IEC 17025 has been achieved and maintained for another year.


What is accreditation and why is it important?

UKAS is the only national accreditation body which has been recognised by the government to assess, against internationally agreed standards, organisations that provide certification, testing and calibration services. This accreditation demonstrates the competency of a laboratory in testing to ensure reliability of the analysis results and delivers confidence in the service of the testing laboratory.

The ISO/IEC 17025 standard is applicable for all laboratories performing calibrations and/or tests. It contains all the requirements that these laboratories have to meet in order to demonstrate that they operate a quality system, they are technically competent and are able to generate technically valid results.

These criteria include:

  • Technical competence of staff
  • Validity and appropriateness of test methods
  • Suitability and maintenance of test equipment
  • Testing environment
  • Sampling, handling and storage of test items
  • Quality assurance of test data

The latest revision of the standard, ISO/IEC 17025:2017 specifically describes the commonalities with it and ISO 9001:2015. This updated standard has also adopted a new structure to align it with the other existing ISO standards. There are several new and updated requirements, such as:

  • A new chapter on risk-based thinking has been added. The employment of this information has enabled some reduction of the standard’s prescriptive idelines and resulted in their replacement by performance-based guidelines.
  • Greater flexibility in the guidelines for processes, procedures, documented information, and organizational responsibilities.
  • Terminology has been updated
  • The standard now recognizes and incorporates the use of computer systems, electronic records, and the production of electronic results and reports. This change results from the greater focus on information technologies, which significantly modernizes the document

The Sheffield Assay Office has now held this accreditation for over 35 years, which is an outstanding achievement in a fiercely competitive marketplace.

For details of our Schedule of Accreditation, visit the download page.

For more information on our Analytical Services, call us on 0114 231 2121 or email

The Sheffield Assay Office was established in 1773, under an Act of Parliament and today the company assays and hallmarks the precious metals - silver, gold, platinum and palladium. Sheffield Assay Office is one of only four UK assay offices who all work to uphold the Hallmarking Act of 1973 and continue to ensure consumer protection for customers purchasing precious metals.

To find out more about the whole range of services offered by Sheffield Assay Office, such as our hallmarking and analytical services, please email us at or complete the contact form on our website at,

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